Yu Wu


2022

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SpeechT5: Unified-Modal Encoder-Decoder Pre-Training for Spoken Language Processing
Junyi Ao | Rui Wang | Long Zhou | Chengyi Wang | Shuo Ren | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Tom Ko | Qing Li | Yu Zhang | Zhihua Wei | Yao Qian | Jinyu Li | Furu Wei
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Motivated by the success of T5 (Text-To-Text Transfer Transformer) in pre-trained natural language processing models, we propose a unified-modal SpeechT5 framework that explores the encoder-decoder pre-training for self-supervised speech/text representation learning. The SpeechT5 framework consists of a shared encoder-decoder network and six modal-specific (speech/text) pre/post-nets. After preprocessing the input speech/text through the pre-nets, the shared encoder-decoder network models the sequence-to-sequence transformation, and then the post-nets generate the output in the speech/text modality based on the output of the decoder. Leveraging large-scale unlabeled speech and text data, we pre-train SpeechT5 to learn a unified-modal representation, hoping to improve the modeling capability for both speech and text. To align the textual and speech information into this unified semantic space, we propose a cross-modal vector quantization approach that randomly mixes up speech/text states with latent units as the interface between encoder and decoder. Extensive evaluations show the superiority of the proposed SpeechT5 framework on a wide variety of spoken language processing tasks, including automatic speech recognition, speech synthesis, speech translation, voice conversion, speech enhancement, and speaker identification.

2021

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On Commonsense Cues in BERT for Solving Commonsense Tasks
Leyang Cui | Sijie Cheng | Yu Wu | Yue Zhang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL-IJCNLP 2021

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Template-Based Named Entity Recognition Using BART
Leyang Cui | Yu Wu | Jian Liu | Sen Yang | Yue Zhang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL-IJCNLP 2021

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Detecting Speaker Personas from Conversational Texts
Jia-Chen Gu | Zhenhua Ling | Yu Wu | Quan Liu | Zhigang Chen | Xiaodan Zhu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Personas are useful for dialogue response prediction. However, the personas used in current studies are pre-defined and hard to obtain before a conversation. To tackle this issue, we study a new task, named Speaker Persona Detection (SPD), which aims to detect speaker personas based on the plain conversational text. In this task, a best-matched persona is searched out from candidates given the conversational text. This is a many-to-many semantic matching task because both contexts and personas in SPD are composed of multiple sentences. The long-term dependency and the dynamic redundancy among these sentences increase the difficulty of this task. We build a dataset for SPD, dubbed as Persona Match on Persona-Chat (PMPC). Furthermore, we evaluate several baseline models and propose utterance-to-profile (U2P) matching networks for this task. The U2P models operate at a fine granularity which treat both contexts and personas as sets of multiple sequences. Then, each sequence pair is scored and an interpretable overall score is obtained for a context-persona pair through aggregation. Evaluation results show that the U2P models outperform their baseline counterparts significantly.

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Knowledge Enhanced Fine-Tuning for Better Handling Unseen Entities in Dialogue Generation
Leyang Cui | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Yue Zhang
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Although pre-training models have achieved great success in dialogue generation, their performance drops dramatically when the input contains an entity that does not appear in pre-training and fine-tuning datasets (unseen entity). To address this issue, existing methods leverage an external knowledge base to generate appropriate responses. In real-world practical, the entity may not be included by the knowledge base or suffer from the precision of knowledge retrieval. To deal with this problem, instead of introducing knowledge base as the input, we force the model to learn a better semantic representation by predicting the information in the knowledge base, only based on the input context. Specifically, with the help of a knowledge base, we introduce two auxiliary training objectives: 1) Interpret Masked Word, which conjectures the meaning of the masked entity given the context; 2) Hypernym Generation, which predicts the hypernym of the entity based on the context. Experiment results on two dialogue corpus verify the effectiveness of our methods under both knowledge available and unavailable settings.

2020

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MuTual: A Dataset for Multi-Turn Dialogue Reasoning
Leyang Cui | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Yue Zhang | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Non-task oriented dialogue systems have achieved great success in recent years due to largely accessible conversation data and the development of deep learning techniques. Given a context, current systems are able to yield a relevant and fluent response, but sometimes make logical mistakes because of weak reasoning capabilities. To facilitate the conversation reasoning research, we introduce MuTual, a novel dataset for Multi-Turn dialogue Reasoning, consisting of 8,860 manually annotated dialogues based on Chinese student English listening comprehension exams. Compared to previous benchmarks for non-task oriented dialogue systems, MuTual is much more challenging since it requires a model that be able to handle various reasoning problems. Empirical results show that state-of-the-art methods only reach 71%, which is far behind human performance of 94%, indicating that there is ample room for improving reasoning ability.

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A Retrieve-and-Rewrite Initialization Method for Unsupervised Machine Translation
Shuo Ren | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Ming Zhou | Shuai Ma
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

The commonly used framework for unsupervised machine translation builds initial translation models of both translation directions, and then performs iterative back-translation to jointly boost their translation performance. The initialization stage is very important since bad initialization may wrongly squeeze the search space, and too much noise introduced in this stage may hurt the final performance. In this paper, we propose a novel retrieval and rewriting based method to better initialize unsupervised translation models. We first retrieve semantically comparable sentences from monolingual corpora of two languages and then rewrite the target side to minimize the semantic gap between the source and retrieved targets with a designed rewriting model. The rewritten sentence pairs are used to initialize SMT models which are used to generate pseudo data for two NMT models, followed by the iterative back-translation. Experiments show that our method can build better initial unsupervised translation models and improve the final translation performance by over 4 BLEU scores. Our code is released at https://github.com/Imagist-Shuo/RRforUNMT.git.

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Curriculum Pre-training for End-to-End Speech Translation
Chengyi Wang | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Ming Zhou | Zhenglu Yang
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

End-to-end speech translation poses a heavy burden on the encoder because it has to transcribe, understand, and learn cross-lingual semantics simultaneously. To obtain a powerful encoder, traditional methods pre-train it on ASR data to capture speech features. However, we argue that pre-training the encoder only through simple speech recognition is not enough, and high-level linguistic knowledge should be considered. Inspired by this, we propose a curriculum pre-training method that includes an elementary course for transcription learning and two advanced courses for understanding the utterance and mapping words in two languages. The difficulty of these courses is gradually increasing. Experiments show that our curriculum pre-training method leads to significant improvements on En-De and En-Fr speech translation benchmarks.

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Formality Style Transfer with Shared Latent Space
Yunli Wang | Yu Wu | Lili Mou | Zhoujun Li | WenHan Chao
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Conventional approaches for formality style transfer borrow models from neural machine translation, which typically requires massive parallel data for training. However, the dataset for formality style transfer is considerably smaller than translation corpora. Moreover, we observe that informal and formal sentences closely resemble each other, which is different from the translation task where two languages have different vocabularies and grammars. In this paper, we present a new approach, Sequence-to-Sequence with Shared Latent Space (S2S-SLS), for formality style transfer, where we propose two auxiliary losses and adopt joint training of bi-directional transfer and auto-encoding. Experimental results show that S2S-SLS (with either RNN or Transformer architectures) consistently outperforms baselines in various settings, especially when we have limited data.

2019

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A Sequential Matching Framework for Multi-Turn Response Selection in Retrieval-Based Chatbots
Yu Wu | Wei Wu | Chen Xing | Can Xu | Zhoujun Li | Ming Zhou
Computational Linguistics, Volume 45, Issue 1 - March 2019

We study the problem of response selection for multi-turn conversation in retrieval-based chatbots. The task involves matching a response candidate with a conversation context, the challenges for which include how to recognize important parts of the context, and how to model the relationships among utterances in the context. Existing matching methods may lose important information in contexts as we can interpret them with a unified framework in which contexts are transformed to fixed-length vectors without any interaction with responses before matching. This motivates us to propose a new matching framework that can sufficiently carry important information in contexts to matching and model relationships among utterances at the same time. The new framework, which we call a sequential matching framework (SMF), lets each utterance in a context interact with a response candidate at the first step and transforms the pair to a matching vector. The matching vectors are then accumulated following the order of the utterances in the context with a recurrent neural network (RNN) that models relationships among utterances. Context-response matching is then calculated with the hidden states of the RNN. Under SMF, we propose a sequential convolutional network and sequential attention network and conduct experiments on two public data sets to test their performance. Experiment results show that both models can significantly outperform state-of-the-art matching methods. We also show that the models are interpretable with visualizations that provide us insights on how they capture and leverage important information in contexts for matching.

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Explicit Cross-lingual Pre-training for Unsupervised Machine Translation
Shuo Ren | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Ming Zhou | Shuai Ma
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Pre-training has proven to be effective in unsupervised machine translation due to its ability to model deep context information in cross-lingual scenarios. However, the cross-lingual information obtained from shared BPE spaces is inexplicit and limited. In this paper, we propose a novel cross-lingual pre-training method for unsupervised machine translation by incorporating explicit cross-lingual training signals. Specifically, we first calculate cross-lingual n-gram embeddings and infer an n-gram translation table from them. With those n-gram translation pairs, we propose a new pre-training model called Cross-lingual Masked Language Model (CMLM), which randomly chooses source n-grams in the input text stream and predicts their translation candidates at each time step. Experiments show that our method can incorporate beneficial cross-lingual information into pre-trained models. Taking pre-trained CMLM models as the encoder and decoder, we significantly improve the performance of unsupervised machine translation.

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Unsupervised Context Rewriting for Open Domain Conversation
Kun Zhou | Kai Zhang | Yu Wu | Shujie Liu | Jingsong Yu
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Context modeling has a pivotal role in open domain conversation. Existing works either use heuristic methods or jointly learn context modeling and response generation with an encoder-decoder framework. This paper proposes an explicit context rewriting method, which rewrites the last utterance by considering context history. We leverage pseudo-parallel data and elaborate a context rewriting network, which is built upon the CopyNet with the reinforcement learning method. The rewritten utterance is beneficial to candidate retrieval, explainable context modeling, as well as enabling to employ a single-turn framework to the multi-turn scenario. The empirical results show that our model outperforms baselines in terms of the rewriting quality, the multi-turn response generation, and the end-to-end retrieval-based chatbots.

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Harnessing Pre-Trained Neural Networks with Rules for Formality Style Transfer
Yunli Wang | Yu Wu | Lili Mou | Zhoujun Li | Wenhan Chao
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Formality text style transfer plays an important role in various NLP applications, such as non-native speaker assistants and child education. Early studies normalize informal sentences with rules, before statistical and neural models become a prevailing method in the field. While a rule-based system is still a common preprocessing step for formality style transfer in the neural era, it could introduce noise if we use the rules in a naive way such as data preprocessing. To mitigate this problem, we study how to harness rules into a state-of-the-art neural network that is typically pretrained on massive corpora. We propose three fine-tuning methods in this paper and achieve a new state-of-the-art on benchmark datasets

2018

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Keyphrase Generation with Correlation Constraints
Jun Chen | Xiaoming Zhang | Yu Wu | Zhao Yan | Zhoujun Li
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

In this paper, we study automatic keyphrase generation. Although conventional approaches to this task show promising results, they neglect correlation among keyphrases, resulting in duplication and coverage issues. To solve these problems, we propose a new sequence-to-sequence architecture for keyphrase generation named CorrRNN, which captures correlation among multiple keyphrases in two ways. First, we employ a coverage vector to indicate whether the word in the source document has been summarized by previous phrases to improve the coverage for keyphrases. Second, preceding phrases are taken into account to eliminate duplicate phrases and improve result coherence. Experiment results show that our model significantly outperforms the state-of-the-art method on benchmark datasets in terms of both accuracy and diversity.

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Learning Matching Models with Weak Supervision for Response Selection in Retrieval-based Chatbots
Yu Wu | Wei Wu | Zhoujun Li | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

We propose a method that can leverage unlabeled data to learn a matching model for response selection in retrieval-based chatbots. The method employs a sequence-to-sequence architecture (Seq2Seq) model as a weak annotator to judge the matching degree of unlabeled pairs, and then performs learning with both the weak signals and the unlabeled data. Experimental results on two public data sets indicate that matching models get significant improvements when they are learned with the proposed method.

2017

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Sequential Matching Network: A New Architecture for Multi-turn Response Selection in Retrieval-Based Chatbots
Yu Wu | Wei Wu | Chen Xing | Ming Zhou | Zhoujun Li
Proceedings of the 55th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

We study response selection for multi-turn conversation in retrieval based chatbots. Existing work either concatenates utterances in context or matches a response with a highly abstract context vector finally, which may lose relationships among the utterances or important information in the context. We propose a sequential matching network (SMN) to address both problems. SMN first matches a response with each utterance in the context on multiple levels of granularity, and distills important matching information from each pair as a vector with convolution and pooling operations. The vectors are then accumulated in a chronological order through a recurrent neural network (RNN) which models relationships among the utterances. The final matching score is calculated with the hidden states of the RNN. Empirical study on two public data sets shows that SMN can significantly outperform state-of-the-art methods for response selection in multi-turn conversation.

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Beihang-MSRA at SemEval-2017 Task 3: A Ranking System with Neural Matching Features for Community Question Answering
Wenzheng Feng | Yu Wu | Wei Wu | Zhoujun Li | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of the 11th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval-2017)

This paper presents the system in SemEval-2017 Task 3, Community Question Answering (CQA). We develop a ranking system that is capable of capturing semantic relations between text pairs with little word overlap. In addition to traditional NLP features, we introduce several neural network based matching features which enable our system to measure text similarity beyond lexicons. Our system significantly outperforms baseline methods and holds the second place in Subtask A and the fifth place in Subtask B, which demonstrates its efficacy on answer selection and question retrieval.

2016

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Detecting Context Dependent Messages in a Conversational Environment
Chaozhuo Li | Yu Wu | Wei Wu | Chen Xing | Zhoujun Li | Ming Zhou
Proceedings of COLING 2016, the 26th International Conference on Computational Linguistics: Technical Papers

While automatic response generation for building chatbot systems has drawn a lot of attention recently, there is limited understanding on when we need to consider the linguistic context of an input text in the generation process. The task is challenging, as messages in a conversational environment are short and informal, and evidence that can indicate a message is context dependent is scarce. After a study of social conversation data crawled from the web, we observed that some characteristics estimated from the responses of messages are discriminative for identifying context dependent messages. With the characteristics as weak supervision, we propose using a Long Short Term Memory (LSTM) network to learn a classifier. Our method carries out text representation and classifier learning in a unified framework. Experimental results show that the proposed method can significantly outperform baseline methods on accuracy of classification.