Yuan Yao


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Prompt Tuning for Discriminative Pre-trained Language Models
Yuan Yao | Bowen Dong | Ao Zhang | Zhengyan Zhang | Ruobing Xie | Zhiyuan Liu | Leyu Lin | Maosong Sun | Jianyong Wang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2022

Recent works have shown promising results of prompt tuning in stimulating pre-trained language models (PLMs) for natural language processing (NLP) tasks. However, to the best of our knowledge, existing works focus on prompt-tuning generative PLMs that are pre-trained to generate target tokens, such as BERT. It is still unknown whether and how discriminative PLMs, e.g., ELECTRA, can be effectively prompt-tuned. In this work, we present DPT, the first prompt tuning framework for discriminative PLMs, which reformulates NLP tasks into a discriminative language modeling problem. Comprehensive experiments on text classification and question answering show that, compared with vanilla fine-tuning, DPT achieves significantly higher performance, and also prevents the unstable problem in tuning large PLMs in both full-set and low-resource settings.

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PEVL: Position-enhanced Pre-training and Prompt Tuning for Vision-language Models
Yuan Yao | Qianyu Chen | Ao Zhang | Wei Ji | Zhiyuan Liu | Tat-Seng Chua | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Vision-language pre-training (VLP) has shown impressive performance on a wide range of cross-modal tasks, where VLP models without reliance on object detectors are becoming the mainstream due to their superior computation efficiency and competitive performance. However, the removal of object detectors also deprives the capability of VLP models in explicit object modeling, which is essential to various position-sensitive vision-language (VL) tasks, such as referring expression comprehension and visual commonsense reasoning. To address the challenge, we introduce PEVL that enhances the pre-training and prompt tuning of VLP models with explicit object position modeling. Specifically, PEVL reformulates discretized object positions and language in a unified language modeling framework, which facilitates explicit VL alignment during pre-training, and also enables flexible prompt tuning for various downstream tasks. We show that PEVL enables state-of-the-art performance of detector-free VLP models on position-sensitive tasks such as referring expression comprehension and phrase grounding, and also improves the performance on position-insensitive tasks with grounded inputs. We make the data and code for this paper publicly available at https://github.com/thunlp/PEVL.


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Turn the Combination Lock: Learnable Textual Backdoor Attacks via Word Substitution
Fanchao Qi | Yuan Yao | Sophia Xu | Zhiyuan Liu | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Recent studies show that neural natural language processing (NLP) models are vulnerable to backdoor attacks. Injected with backdoors, models perform normally on benign examples but produce attacker-specified predictions when the backdoor is activated, presenting serious security threats to real-world applications. Since existing textual backdoor attacks pay little attention to the invisibility of backdoors, they can be easily detected and blocked. In this work, we present invisible backdoors that are activated by a learnable combination of word substitution. We show that NLP models can be injected with backdoors that lead to a nearly 100% attack success rate, whereas being highly invisible to existing defense strategies and even human inspections. The results raise a serious alarm to the security of NLP models, which requires further research to be resolved. All the data and code of this paper are released at https://github.com/thunlp/BkdAtk-LWS.

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CodRED: A Cross-Document Relation Extraction Dataset for Acquiring Knowledge in the Wild
Yuan Yao | Jiaju Du | Yankai Lin | Peng Li | Zhiyuan Liu | Jie Zhou | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Existing relation extraction (RE) methods typically focus on extracting relational facts between entity pairs within single sentences or documents. However, a large quantity of relational facts in knowledge bases can only be inferred across documents in practice. In this work, we present the problem of cross-document RE, making an initial step towards knowledge acquisition in the wild. To facilitate the research, we construct the first human-annotated cross-document RE dataset CodRED. Compared to existing RE datasets, CodRED presents two key challenges: Given two entities, (1) it requires finding the relevant documents that can provide clues for identifying their relations; (2) it requires reasoning over multiple documents to extract the relational facts. We conduct comprehensive experiments to show that CodRED is challenging to existing RE methods including strong BERT-based models.

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ONION: A Simple and Effective Defense Against Textual Backdoor Attacks
Fanchao Qi | Yangyi Chen | Mukai Li | Yuan Yao | Zhiyuan Liu | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Backdoor attacks are a kind of emergent training-time threat to deep neural networks (DNNs). They can manipulate the output of DNNs and possess high insidiousness. In the field of natural language processing, some attack methods have been proposed and achieve very high attack success rates on multiple popular models. Nevertheless, there are few studies on defending against textual backdoor attacks. In this paper, we propose a simple and effective textual backdoor defense named ONION, which is based on outlier word detection and, to the best of our knowledge, is the first method that can handle all the textual backdoor attack situations. Experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of our model in defending BiLSTM and BERT against five different backdoor attacks. All the code and data of this paper can be obtained at https://github.com/thunlp/ONION.

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Open Hierarchical Relation Extraction
Kai Zhang | Yuan Yao | Ruobing Xie | Xu Han | Zhiyuan Liu | Fen Lin | Leyu Lin | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Open relation extraction (OpenRE) aims to extract novel relation types from open-domain corpora, which plays an important role in completing the relation schemes of knowledge bases (KBs). Most OpenRE methods cast different relation types in isolation without considering their hierarchical dependency. We argue that OpenRE is inherently in close connection with relation hierarchies. To establish the bidirectional connections between OpenRE and relation hierarchy, we propose the task of open hierarchical relation extraction and present a novel OHRE framework for the task. We propose a dynamic hierarchical triplet objective and hierarchical curriculum training paradigm, to effectively integrate hierarchy information into relation representations for better novel relation extraction. We also present a top-down hierarchy expansion algorithm to add the extracted relations into existing hierarchies with reasonable interpretability. Comprehensive experiments show that OHRE outperforms state-of-the-art models by a large margin on both relation clustering and hierarchy expansion.


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Denoising Relation Extraction from Document-level Distant Supervision
Chaojun Xiao | Yuan Yao | Ruobing Xie | Xu Han | Zhiyuan Liu | Maosong Sun | Fen Lin | Leyu Lin
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Distant supervision (DS) has been widely adopted to generate auto-labeled data for sentence-level relation extraction (RE) and achieved great results. However, the existing success of DS cannot be directly transferred to more challenging document-level relation extraction (DocRE), as the inevitable noise caused by DS may be even multiplied in documents and significantly harm the performance of RE. To alleviate this issue, we propose a novel pre-trained model for DocRE, which de-emphasize noisy DS data via multiple pre-training tasks. The experimental results on the large-scale DocRE benchmark show that our model can capture useful information from noisy data and achieve promising results.

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Meta-Information Guided Meta-Learning for Few-Shot Relation Classification
Bowen Dong | Yuan Yao | Ruobing Xie | Tianyu Gao | Xu Han | Zhiyuan Liu | Fen Lin | Leyu Lin | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Few-shot classification requires classifiers to adapt to new classes with only a few training instances. State-of-the-art meta-learning approaches such as MAML learn how to initialize and fast adapt parameters from limited instances, which have shown promising results in few-shot classification. However, existing meta-learning models solely rely on implicit instance-based statistics, and thus suffer from instance unreliability and weak interpretability. To solve this problem, we propose a novel meta-information guided meta-learning (MIML) framework, where semantic concepts of classes provide strong guidance for meta-learning in both initialization and adaptation. In effect, our model can establish connections between instance-based information and semantic-based information, which enables more effective initialization and faster adaptation. Comprehensive experimental results on few-shot relation classification demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed framework. Notably, MIML achieves comparable or superior performance to humans with only one shot on FewRel evaluation.


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Open Relation Extraction: Relational Knowledge Transfer from Supervised Data to Unsupervised Data
Ruidong Wu | Yuan Yao | Xu Han | Ruobing Xie | Zhiyuan Liu | Fen Lin | Leyu Lin | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Open relation extraction (OpenRE) aims to extract relational facts from the open-domain corpus. To this end, it discovers relation patterns between named entities and then clusters those semantically equivalent patterns into a united relation cluster. Most OpenRE methods typically confine themselves to unsupervised paradigms, without taking advantage of existing relational facts in knowledge bases (KBs) and their high-quality labeled instances. To address this issue, we propose Relational Siamese Networks (RSNs) to learn similarity metrics of relations from labeled data of pre-defined relations, and then transfer the relational knowledge to identify novel relations in unlabeled data. Experiment results on two real-world datasets show that our framework can achieve significant improvements as compared with other state-of-the-art methods. Our code is available at https://github.com/thunlp/RSN.

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OpenNRE: An Open and Extensible Toolkit for Neural Relation Extraction
Xu Han | Tianyu Gao | Yuan Yao | Deming Ye | Zhiyuan Liu | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP): System Demonstrations

OpenNRE is an open-source and extensible toolkit that provides a unified framework to implement neural models for relation extraction (RE). Specifically, by implementing typical RE methods, OpenNRE not only allows developers to train custom models to extract structured relational facts from the plain text but also supports quick model validation for researchers. Besides, OpenNRE provides various functional RE modules based on both TensorFlow and PyTorch to maintain sufficient modularity and extensibility, making it becomes easy to incorporate new models into the framework. Besides the toolkit, we also release an online system to meet real-time extraction without any training and deploying. Meanwhile, the online system can extract facts in various scenarios as well as aligning the extracted facts to Wikidata, which may benefit various downstream knowledge-driven applications (e.g., information retrieval and question answering). More details of the toolkit and online system can be obtained from http://github.com/thunlp/OpenNRE.

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DocRED: A Large-Scale Document-Level Relation Extraction Dataset
Yuan Yao | Deming Ye | Peng Li | Xu Han | Yankai Lin | Zhenghao Liu | Zhiyuan Liu | Lixin Huang | Jie Zhou | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Multiple entities in a document generally exhibit complex inter-sentence relations, and cannot be well handled by existing relation extraction (RE) methods that typically focus on extracting intra-sentence relations for single entity pairs. In order to accelerate the research on document-level RE, we introduce DocRED, a new dataset constructed from Wikipedia and Wikidata with three features: (1) DocRED annotates both named entities and relations, and is the largest human-annotated dataset for document-level RE from plain text; (2) DocRED requires reading multiple sentences in a document to extract entities and infer their relations by synthesizing all information of the document; (3) along with the human-annotated data, we also offer large-scale distantly supervised data, which enables DocRED to be adopted for both supervised and weakly supervised scenarios. In order to verify the challenges of document-level RE, we implement recent state-of-the-art methods for RE and conduct a thorough evaluation of these methods on DocRED. Empirical results show that DocRED is challenging for existing RE methods, which indicates that document-level RE remains an open problem and requires further efforts. Based on the detailed analysis on the experiments, we discuss multiple promising directions for future research. We make DocRED and the code for our baselines publicly available at https://github.com/thunlp/DocRED.


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FewRel: A Large-Scale Supervised Few-Shot Relation Classification Dataset with State-of-the-Art Evaluation
Xu Han | Hao Zhu | Pengfei Yu | Ziyun Wang | Yuan Yao | Zhiyuan Liu | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

We present a Few-Shot Relation Classification Dataset (dataset), consisting of 70, 000 sentences on 100 relations derived from Wikipedia and annotated by crowdworkers. The relation of each sentence is first recognized by distant supervision methods, and then filtered by crowdworkers. We adapt the most recent state-of-the-art few-shot learning methods for relation classification and conduct thorough evaluation of these methods. Empirical results show that even the most competitive few-shot learning models struggle on this task, especially as compared with humans. We also show that a range of different reasoning skills are needed to solve our task. These results indicate that few-shot relation classification remains an open problem and still requires further research. Our detailed analysis points multiple directions for future research.