Proceedings of the 1st Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 10th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations

Derek Wong, Douwe Kiela (Editors)

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Suzhou, China
Association for Computational Linguistics
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Proceedings of the 1st Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 10th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations
Derek Wong | Douwe Kiela

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AMesure: A Web Platform to Assist the Clear Writing of Administrative Texts
Thomas François | Adeline Müller | Eva Rolin | Magali Norré

This article presents the AMesure platform, which aims to assist writers of French administrative texts in simplifying their writing. This platform includes a readability formula specialized for administrative texts and it also uses various natural language processing (NLP) tools to analyze texts and highlight a number of linguistic phenomena considered difficult to read. Finally, based on the difficulties identified, it offers pieces of advice coming from official plain language guides to users. This paper describes the different components of the system and reports an evaluation of these components.

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AutoNLU: An On-demand Cloud-based Natural Language Understanding System for Enterprises
Nham Le | Tuan Lai | Trung Bui | Doo Soon Kim

With the renaissance of deep learning, neural networks have achieved promising results on many natural language understanding (NLU) tasks. Even though the source codes of many neural network models are publicly available, there is still a large gap from open-sourced models to solving real-world problems in enterprises. Therefore, to fill this gap, we introduce AutoNLU, an on-demand cloud-based system with an easy-to-use interface that covers all common use-cases and steps in developing an NLU model. AutoNLU has supported many product teams within Adobe with different use-cases and datasets, quickly delivering them working models. To demonstrate the effectiveness of AutoNLU, we present two case studies. i) We build a practical NLU model for handling various image-editing requests in Photoshop. ii) We build powerful keyphrase extraction models that achieve state-of-the-art results on two public benchmarks. In both cases, end users only need to write a small amount of code to convert their datasets into a common format used by AutoNLU.

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ISA: An Intelligent Shopping Assistant
Tuan Lai | Trung Bui | Nedim Lipka

Despite the growth of e-commerce, brick-and-mortar stores are still the preferred destinations for many people. In this paper, we present ISA, a mobile-based intelligent shopping assistant that is designed to improve shopping experience in physical stores. ISA assists users by leveraging advanced techniques in computer vision, speech processing, and natural language processing. An in-store user only needs to take a picture or scan the barcode of the product of interest, and then the user can talk to the assistant about the product. The assistant can also guide the user through the purchase process or recommend other similar products to the user. We take a data-driven approach in building the engines of ISA’s natural language processing component, and the engines achieve good performance.

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metaCAT: A Metadata-based Task-oriented Chatbot Annotation Tool
Ximing Liu | Wei Xue | Qi Su | Weiran Nie | Wei Peng

Creating high-quality annotated dialogue corpora is challenging. It is essential to develop practical annotation tools to support humans in this time-consuming and error-prone task. We present metaCAT, which is an open-source web-based annotation tool designed specifically for developing task-oriented dialogue data. To the best of our knowledge, metaCAT is the first annotation tool that provides comprehensive metadata annotation coverage to the domain, intent, and span information. The data annotation quality is enhanced by a real-time annotation constraint-checking mechanism. An Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) function is implemented to allow users to paraphrase and create more diversified annotated utterances. metaCAT is publicly available for the community.

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NLP Tools for Predictive Maintenance Records in MaintNet
Farhad Akhbardeh | Travis Desell | Marcos Zampieri

Processing maintenance logbook records is an important step in the development of predictive maintenance systems. Logbooks often include free text fields with domain specific terms, abbreviations, and non-standard spelling posing challenges to off-the-shelf NLP pipelines trained on standard contemporary corpora. Despite the importance of this data type, processing predictive maintenance data is still an under-explored topic in NLP. With the goal of providing more datasets and resources to the community, in this paper we present a number of new resources available in MaintNet, a collaborative open-source library and data repository of predictive maintenance language datasets. We describe novel annotated datasets from multiple domains such as aviation, automotive, and facility maintenance domains and new tools for segmentation, spell checking, POS tagging, clustering, and classification.

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Fairseq S2T: Fast Speech-to-Text Modeling with Fairseq
Changhan Wang | Yun Tang | Xutai Ma | Anne Wu | Dmytro Okhonko | Juan Pino

We introduce fairseq S2T, a fairseq extension for speech-to-text (S2T) modeling tasks such as end-to-end speech recognition and speech-to-text translation. It follows fairseq’s careful design for scalability and extensibility. We provide end-to-end workflows from data pre-processing, model training to offline (online) inference. We implement state-of-the-art RNN-based as well as Transformer-based models and open-source detailed training recipes. Fairseq’s machine translation models and language models can be seamlessly integrated into S2T workflows for multi-task learning or transfer learning. Fairseq S2T is available at

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NLPStatTest: A Toolkit for Comparing NLP System Performance
Haotian Zhu | Denise Mak | Jesse Gioannini | Fei Xia

Statistical significance testing centered on p-values is commonly used to compare NLP system performance, but p-values alone are insufficient because statistical significance differs from practical significance. The latter can be measured by estimating effect size. In this pa-per, we propose a three-stage procedure for comparing NLP system performance and provide a toolkit, NLPStatTest, that automates the process. Users can upload NLP system evaluation scores and the toolkit will analyze these scores, run appropriate significance tests, estimate effect size, and conduct power analysis to estimate Type II error. The toolkit provides a convenient and systematic way to compare NLP system performance that goes beyond statistical significance testing.