Zhengzhong Liu


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Compression, Transduction, and Creation: A Unified Framework for Evaluating Natural Language Generation
Mingkai Deng | Bowen Tan | Zhengzhong Liu | Eric Xing | Zhiting Hu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Natural language generation (NLG) spans a broad range of tasks, each of which serves for specific objectives and desires different properties of generated text. The complexity makes automatic evaluation of NLG particularly challenging. Previous work has typically focused on a single task and developed individual evaluation metrics based on specific intuitions. In this paper, we propose a unifying perspective based on the nature of information change in NLG tasks, including compression (e.g., summarization), transduction (e.g., text rewriting), and creation (e.g., dialog). _Information alignment_ between input, context, and output text plays a common central role in characterizing the generation. With automatic alignment prediction models, we develop a family of interpretable metrics that are suitable for evaluating key aspects of different NLG tasks, often without need of gold reference data. Experiments show the uniformly designed metrics achieve stronger or comparable correlations with human judgement compared to state-of-the-art metrics in each of diverse tasks, including text summarization, style transfer, and knowledge-grounded dialog.

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Cross-document Event Identity via Dense Annotation
Adithya Pratapa | Zhengzhong Liu | Kimihiro Hasegawa | Linwei Li | Yukari Yamakawa | Shikun Zhang | Teruko Mitamura
Proceedings of the 25th Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning

In this paper, we study the identity of textual events from different documents. While the complex nature of event identity is previously studied (Hovy et al., 2013), the case of events across documents is unclear. Prior work on cross-document event coreference has two main drawbacks. First, they restrict the annotations to a limited set of event types. Second, they insufficiently tackle the concept of event identity. Such annotation setup reduces the pool of event mentions and prevents one from considering the possibility of quasi-identity relations. We propose a dense annotation approach for cross-document event coreference, comprising a rich source of event mentions and a dense annotation effort between related document pairs. To this end, we design a new annotation workflow with careful quality control and an easy-to-use annotation interface. In addition to the links, we further collect overlapping event contexts, including time, location, and participants, to shed some light on the relation between identity decisions and context. We present an open-access dataset for cross-document event coreference, CDEC-WN, collected from English Wikinews and open-source our annotation toolkit to encourage further research on cross-document tasks.


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A Two-Step Approach for Implicit Event Argument Detection
Zhisong Zhang | Xiang Kong | Zhengzhong Liu | Xuezhe Ma | Eduard Hovy
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

In this work, we explore the implicit event argument detection task, which studies event arguments beyond sentence boundaries. The addition of cross-sentence argument candidates imposes great challenges for modeling. To reduce the number of candidates, we adopt a two-step approach, decomposing the problem into two sub-problems: argument head-word detection and head-to-span expansion. Evaluated on the recent RAMS dataset (Ebner et al., 2020), our model achieves overall better performance than a strong sequence labeling baseline. We further provide detailed error analysis, presenting where the model mainly makes errors and indicating directions for future improvements. It remains a challenge to detect implicit arguments, calling for more future work of document-level modeling for this task.

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A Data-Centric Framework for Composable NLP Workflows
Zhengzhong Liu | Guanxiong Ding | Avinash Bukkittu | Mansi Gupta | Pengzhi Gao | Atif Ahmed | Shikun Zhang | Xin Gao | Swapnil Singhavi | Linwei Li | Wei Wei | Zecong Hu | Haoran Shi | Xiaodan Liang | Teruko Mitamura | Eric Xing | Zhiting Hu
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations

Empirical natural language processing (NLP) systems in application domains (e.g., healthcare, finance, education) involve interoperation among multiple components, ranging from data ingestion, human annotation, to text retrieval, analysis, generation, and visualization. We establish a unified open-source framework to support fast development of such sophisticated NLP workflows in a composable manner. The framework introduces a uniform data representation to encode heterogeneous results by a wide range of NLP tasks. It offers a large repository of processors for NLP tasks, visualization, and annotation, which can be easily assembled with full interoperability under the unified representation. The highly extensible framework allows plugging in custom processors from external off-the-shelf NLP and deep learning libraries. The whole framework is delivered through two modularized yet integratable open-source projects, namely Forte (for workflow infrastructure and NLP function processors) and Stave (for user interaction, visualization, and annotation).


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Texar: A Modularized, Versatile, and Extensible Toolkit for Text Generation
Zhiting Hu | Haoran Shi | Bowen Tan | Wentao Wang | Zichao Yang | Tiancheng Zhao | Junxian He | Lianhui Qin | Di Wang | Xuezhe Ma | Zhengzhong Liu | Xiaodan Liang | Wanrong Zhu | Devendra Sachan | Eric Xing
Proceedings of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics: System Demonstrations

We introduce Texar, an open-source toolkit aiming to support the broad set of text generation tasks that transform any inputs into natural language, such as machine translation, summarization, dialog, content manipulation, and so forth. With the design goals of modularity, versatility, and extensibility in mind, Texar extracts common patterns underlying the diverse tasks and methodologies, creates a library of highly reusable modules and functionalities, and allows arbitrary model architectures and algorithmic paradigms. In Texar, model architecture, inference, and learning processes are properly decomposed. Modules at a high concept level can be freely assembled or plugged in/swapped out. Texar is thus particularly suitable for researchers and practitioners to do fast prototyping and experimentation. The versatile toolkit also fosters technique sharing across different text generation tasks. Texar supports both TensorFlow and PyTorch, and is released under Apache License 2.0 at https://www.texar.io.


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Automatic Event Salience Identification
Zhengzhong Liu | Chenyan Xiong | Teruko Mitamura | Eduard Hovy
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Identifying the salience (i.e. importance) of discourse units is an important task in language understanding. While events play important roles in text documents, little research exists on analyzing their saliency status. This paper empirically studies Event Salience and proposes two salience detection models based on discourse relations. The first is a feature based salience model that incorporates cohesion among discourse units. The second is a neural model that captures more complex interactions between discourse units. In our new large-scale event salience corpus, both methods significantly outperform the strong frequency baseline, while our neural model further improves the feature based one by a large margin. Our analyses demonstrate that our neural model captures interesting connections between salience and discourse unit relations (e.g., scripts and frame structures).

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Texar: A Modularized, Versatile, and Extensible Toolbox for Text Generation
Zhiting Hu | Zichao Yang | Tiancheng Zhao | Haoran Shi | Junxian He | Di Wang | Xuezhe Ma | Zhengzhong Liu | Xiaodan Liang | Lianhui Qin | Devendra Singh Chaplot | Bowen Tan | Xingjiang Yu | Eric Xing
Proceedings of Workshop for NLP Open Source Software (NLP-OSS)

We introduce Texar, an open-source toolkit aiming to support the broad set of text generation tasks. Different from many existing toolkits that are specialized for specific applications (e.g., neural machine translation), Texar is designed to be highly flexible and versatile. This is achieved by abstracting the common patterns underlying the diverse tasks and methodologies, creating a library of highly reusable modules and functionalities, and enabling arbitrary model architectures and various algorithmic paradigms. The features make Texar particularly suitable for technique sharing and generalization across different text generation applications. The toolkit emphasizes heavily on extensibility and modularized system design, so that components can be freely plugged in or swapped out. We conduct extensive experiments and case studies to demonstrate the use and advantage of the toolkit.

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Graph Based Decoding for Event Sequencing and Coreference Resolution
Zhengzhong Liu | Teruko Mitamura | Eduard Hovy
Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Events in text documents are interrelated in complex ways. In this paper, we study two types of relation: Event Coreference and Event Sequencing. We show that the popular tree-like decoding structure for automated Event Coreference is not suitable for Event Sequencing. To this end, we propose a graph-based decoding algorithm that is applicable to both tasks. The new decoding algorithm supports flexible feature sets for both tasks. Empirically, our event coreference system has achieved state-of-the-art performance on the TAC-KBP 2015 event coreference task and our event sequencing system beats a strong temporal-based, oracle-informed baseline. We discuss the challenges of studying these event relations.


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Exploring the steps of Verb Phrase Ellipsis
Zhengzhong Liu | Edgar Gonzàlez Pellicer | Daniel Gillick
Proceedings of the Workshop on Coreference Resolution Beyond OntoNotes (CORBON 2016)

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Unsupervised Ranking Model for Entity Coreference Resolution
Xuezhe Ma | Zhengzhong Liu | Eduard Hovy
Proceedings of the 2016 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

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Harnessing Deep Neural Networks with Logic Rules
Zhiting Hu | Xuezhe Ma | Zhengzhong Liu | Eduard Hovy | Eric Xing
Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)


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Evaluation Algorithms for Event Nugget Detection : A Pilot Study
Zhengzhong Liu | Teruko Mitamura | Eduard Hovy
Proceedings of the The 3rd Workshop on EVENTS: Definition, Detection, Coreference, and Representation


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Supervised Within-Document Event Coreference using Information Propagation
Zhengzhong Liu | Jun Araki | Eduard Hovy | Teruko Mitamura
Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC'14)

Event coreference is an important task for full text analysis. However, previous work uses a variety of approaches, sources and evaluation, making the literature confusing and the results incommensurate. We provide a description of the differences to facilitate future research. Second, we present a supervised method for event coreference resolution that uses a rich feature set and propagates information alternatively between events and their arguments, adapting appropriately for each type of argument.

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Detecting Subevent Structure for Event Coreference Resolution
Jun Araki | Zhengzhong Liu | Eduard Hovy | Teruko Mitamura
Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC'14)

In the task of event coreference resolution, recent work has shown the need to perform not only full coreference but also partial coreference of events. We show that subevents can form a particular hierarchical event structure. This paper examines a novel two-stage approach to finding and improving subevent structures. First, we introduce a multiclass logistic regression model that can detect subevent relations in addition to full coreference. Second, we propose a method to improve subevent structure based on subevent clusters detected by the model. Using a corpus in the Intelligence Community domain, we show that the method achieves over 3.2 BLANC F1 gain in detecting subevent relations against the logistic regression model.


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PolyUCOMP: Combining Semantic Vectors with Skip bigrams for Semantic Textual Similarity
Jian Xu | Qin Lu | Zhengzhong Liu
*SEM 2012: The First Joint Conference on Lexical and Computational Semantics – Volume 1: Proceedings of the main conference and the shared task, and Volume 2: Proceedings of the Sixth International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval 2012)