Zheng Cao


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CGoDial: A Large-Scale Benchmark for Chinese Goal-oriented Dialog Evaluation
Yinpei Dai | Wanwei He | Bowen Li | Yuchuan Wu | Zheng Cao | Zhongqi An | Jian Sun | Yongbin Li
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Practical dialog systems need to deal with various knowledge sources, noisy user expressions, and the shortage of annotated data. To better solve the above problems, we propose CGoDial, a new challenging and comprehensive Chinese benchmark for multi-domain Goal-oriented Dialog evaluation. It contains 96,763 dialog sessions, and 574,949 dialog turns totally, covering three datasets with different knowledge sources: 1) a slot-based dialog (SBD) dataset with table-formed knowledge, 2) a flow-based dialog (FBD) dataset with tree-formed knowledge, and a retrieval-based dialog (RBD) dataset with candidate-formed knowledge. To bridge the gap between academic benchmarks and spoken dialog scenarios, we either collect data from real conversations or add spoken features to existing datasets via crowd-sourcing. The proposed experimental settings include the combinations of training with either the entire training set or a few-shot training set, and testing with either the standard test set or a hard test subset, which can assess model capabilities in terms of general prediction, fast adaptability and reliable robustness.

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mPLUG: Effective and Efficient Vision-Language Learning by Cross-modal Skip-connections
Chenliang Li | Haiyang Xu | Junfeng Tian | Wei Wang | Ming Yan | Bin Bi | Jiabo Ye | He Chen | Guohai Xu | Zheng Cao | Ji Zhang | Songfang Huang | Fei Huang | Jingren Zhou | Luo Si
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Large-scale pre-trained foundation models have been an emerging paradigm for building artificial intelligence (AI) systems, which can be quickly adapted to a wide range of downstream tasks. This paper presents mPLUG, a new vision-language foundation model for both cross-modal understanding and generation. Most existing pre-trained models suffer from inefficiency and linguistic signal overwhelmed by long visual sequences in cross-modal alignment. To address both problems, mPLUG introduces an effective and efficient vision-language architecture with novel cross-modal skip-connections.mPLUG is pre-trained end-to-end on large-scale image-text pairs with both discriminative and generative objectives. It achieves state-of-the-art results on a wide range of vision-language downstream tasks, including image captioning, image-text retrieval, visual grounding and visual question answering. mPLUG also demonstrates strong zero-shot transferability on vision-language and video-language tasks. The code and pre-trained models are available at https://github.com/alibaba/AliceMind

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STAR: SQL Guided Pre-Training for Context-dependent Text-to-SQL Parsing
Zefeng Cai | Xiangyu Li | Binyuan Hui | Min Yang | Bowen Li | Binhua Li | Zheng Cao | Weijie Li | Fei Huang | Luo Si | Yongbin Li
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

In this paper, we propose a novel SQL guided pre-training framework STAR for context-dependent text-to-SQL parsing, which leverages contextual information to enrich natural language (NL) utterance and table schema representations for text-to-SQL conversations. Concretely, we propose two novel pre-training objectives which respectively explore the context-dependent interactions of NL utterances and SQL queries within each text-to-SQL conversation: (i) schema state tracking (SST) objective that tracks and explores the schema states of context-dependent SQL queries in the form of schema-states by predicting and updating the value of each schema slot during interaction; (ii) utterance dependency tracking (UDT) objective that employs weighted contrastive learning to pull together two semantically similar NL utterances and push away the representations of semantically dissimilar NL utterances within each conversation. In addition, we construct a high-quality large-scale context-dependent text-to-SQL conversation corpus to pre-train STAR. Extensive experiments show that STAR achieves new state-of-the-art performance on two downstream benchmarks (SParC and CoSQL), significantly outperforming previous pre-training methods and ranking first on the leaderboard. We believe the release of the constructed corpus, codebase and pre-trained STAR checkpoints would push forward the research in this area.

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SPACE-2: Tree-Structured Semi-Supervised Contrastive Pre-training for Task-Oriented Dialog Understanding
Wanwei He | Yinpei Dai | Binyuan Hui | Min Yang | Zheng Cao | Jianbo Dong | Fei Huang | Luo Si | Yongbin Li
Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Pre-training methods with contrastive learning objectives have shown remarkable success in dialog understanding tasks. However, current contrastive learning solely considers the self-augmented dialog samples as positive samples and treats all other dialog samples as negative ones, which enforces dissimilar representations even for dialogs that are semantically related. In this paper, we propose SPACE-2, a tree-structured pre-trained conversation model, which learns dialog representations from limited labeled dialogs and large-scale unlabeled dialog corpora via semi-supervised contrastive pre-training. Concretely, we first define a general semantic tree structure (STS) to unify the inconsistent annotation schema across different dialog datasets, so that the rich structural information stored in all labeled data can be exploited. Then we propose a novel multi-view score function to increase the relevance of all possible dialogs that share similar STSs and only push away other completely different dialogs during supervised contrastive pre-training. To fully exploit unlabeled dialogs, a basic self-supervised contrastive loss is also added to refine the learned representations. Experiments show that our method can achieve new state-of-the-art results on the DialoGLUE benchmark consisting of seven datasets and four popular dialog understanding tasks.