Yinqiao Li


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RankNAS: Efficient Neural Architecture Search by Pairwise Ranking
Chi Hu | Chenglong Wang | Xiangnan Ma | Xia Meng | Yinqiao Li | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu | Changliang Li
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

This paper addresses the efficiency challenge of Neural Architecture Search (NAS) by formulating the task as a ranking problem. Previous methods require numerous training examples to estimate the accurate performance of architectures, although the actual goal is to find the distinction between “good” and “bad” candidates. Here we do not resort to performance predictors. Instead, we propose a performance ranking method (RankNAS) via pairwise ranking. It enables efficient architecture search using much fewer training examples. Moreover, we develop an architecture selection method to prune the search space and concentrate on more promising candidates. Extensive experiments on machine translation and language modeling tasks show that RankNAS can design high-performance architectures while being orders of magnitude faster than state-of-the-art NAS systems.


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The NiuTrans System for WNGT 2020 Efficiency Task
Chi Hu | Bei Li | Yinqiao Li | Ye Lin | Yanyang Li | Chenglong Wang | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the Fourth Workshop on Neural Generation and Translation

This paper describes the submissions of the NiuTrans Team to the WNGT 2020 Efficiency Shared Task. We focus on the efficient implementation of deep Transformer models (Wang et al., 2019; Li et al., 2019) using NiuTensor, a flexible toolkit for NLP tasks. We explored the combination of deep encoder and shallow decoder in Transformer models via model compression and knowledge distillation. The neural machine translation decoding also benefits from FP16 inference, attention caching, dynamic batching, and batch pruning. Our systems achieve promising results in both translation quality and efficiency, e.g., our fastest system can translate more than 40,000 tokens per second with an RTX 2080 Ti while maintaining 42.9 BLEU on newstest2018.

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Learning Architectures from an Extended Search Space for Language Modeling
Yinqiao Li | Chi Hu | Yuhao Zhang | Nuo Xu | Yufan Jiang | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu | Tongran Liu | Changliang Li
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Neural architecture search (NAS) has advanced significantly in recent years but most NAS systems restrict search to learning architectures of a recurrent or convolutional cell. In this paper, we extend the search space of NAS. In particular, we present a general approach to learn both intra-cell and inter-cell architectures (call it ESS). For a better search result, we design a joint learning method to perform intra-cell and inter-cell NAS simultaneously. We implement our model in a differentiable architecture search system. For recurrent neural language modeling, it outperforms a strong baseline significantly on the PTB and WikiText data, with a new state-of-the-art on PTB. Moreover, the learned architectures show good transferability to other systems. E.g., they improve state-of-the-art systems on the CoNLL and WNUT named entity recognition (NER) tasks and CoNLL chunking task, indicating a promising line of research on large-scale pre-learned architectures.

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The NiuTrans Machine Translation Systems for WMT20
Yuhao Zhang | Ziyang Wang | Runzhe Cao | Binghao Wei | Weiqiao Shan | Shuhan Zhou | Abudurexiti Reheman | Tao Zhou | Xin Zeng | Laohu Wang | Yongyu Mu | Jingnan Zhang | Xiaoqian Liu | Xuanjun Zhou | Yinqiao Li | Bei Li | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the Fifth Conference on Machine Translation

This paper describes NiuTrans neural machine translation systems of the WMT20 news translation tasks. We participated in Japanese<->English, English->Chinese, Inuktitut->English and Tamil->English total five tasks and rank first in Japanese<->English both sides. We mainly utilized iterative back-translation, different depth and widen model architectures, iterative knowledge distillation and iterative fine-tuning. And we find that adequately widened and deepened the model simultaneously, the performance will significantly improve. Also, iterative fine-tuning strategy we implemented is effective during adapting domain. For Inuktitut->English and Tamil->English tasks, we built multilingual models separately and employed pretraining word embedding to obtain better performance.


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The NiuTrans Machine Translation Systems for WMT19
Bei Li | Yinqiao Li | Chen Xu | Ye Lin | Jiqiang Liu | Hui Liu | Ziyang Wang | Yuhao Zhang | Nuo Xu | Zeyang Wang | Kai Feng | Hexuan Chen | Tengbo Liu | Yanyang Li | Qiang Wang | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the Fourth Conference on Machine Translation (Volume 2: Shared Task Papers, Day 1)

This paper described NiuTrans neural machine translation systems for the WMT 2019 news translation tasks. We participated in 13 translation directions, including 11 supervised tasks, namely EN↔{ZH, DE, RU, KK, LT}, GU→EN and the unsupervised DE↔CS sub-track. Our systems were built on Deep Transformer and several back-translation methods. Iterative knowledge distillation and ensemble+reranking were also employed to obtain stronger models. Our unsupervised submissions were based on NMT enhanced by SMT. As a result, we achieved the highest BLEU scores in {KK↔EN, GU→EN} directions, ranking 2nd in {RU→EN, DE↔CS} and 3rd in {ZH→EN, LT→EN, EN→RU, EN↔DE} among all constrained submissions.


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The NiuTrans Machine Translation System for WMT18
Qiang Wang | Bei Li | Jiqiang Liu | Bojian Jiang | Zheyang Zhang | Yinqiao Li | Ye Lin | Tong Xiao | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the Third Conference on Machine Translation: Shared Task Papers

This paper describes the submission of the NiuTrans neural machine translation system for the WMT 2018 Chinese ↔ English news translation tasks. Our baseline systems are based on the Transformer architecture. We further improve the translation performance 2.4-2.6 BLEU points from four aspects, including architectural improvements, diverse ensemble decoding, reranking, and post-processing. Among constrained submissions, we rank 2nd out of 16 submitted systems on Chinese → English task and 3rd out of 16 on English → Chinese task, respectively.

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A Simple and Effective Approach to Coverage-Aware Neural Machine Translation
Yanyang Li | Tong Xiao | Yinqiao Li | Qiang Wang | Changming Xu | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

We offer a simple and effective method to seek a better balance between model confidence and length preference for Neural Machine Translation (NMT). Unlike the popular length normalization and coverage models, our model does not require training nor reranking the limited n-best outputs. Moreover, it is robust to large beam sizes, which is not well studied in previous work. On the Chinese-English and English-German translation tasks, our approach yields +0.4 1.5 BLEU improvements over the state-of-the-art baselines.

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Multi-layer Representation Fusion for Neural Machine Translation
Qiang Wang | Fuxue Li | Tong Xiao | Yanyang Li | Yinqiao Li | Jingbo Zhu
Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Neural machine translation systems require a number of stacked layers for deep models. But the prediction depends on the sentence representation of the top-most layer with no access to low-level representations. This makes it more difficult to train the model and poses a risk of information loss to prediction. In this paper, we propose a multi-layer representation fusion (MLRF) approach to fusing stacked layers. In particular, we design three fusion functions to learn a better representation from the stack. Experimental results show that our approach yields improvements of 0.92 and 0.56 BLEU points over the strong Transformer baseline on IWSLT German-English and NIST Chinese-English MT tasks respectively. The result is new state-of-the-art in German-English translation.