Ajay Nagesh


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Findings of the 2021 Conference on Machine Translation (WMT21)
Farhad Akhbardeh | Arkady Arkhangorodsky | Magdalena Biesialska | Ondřej Bojar | Rajen Chatterjee | Vishrav Chaudhary | Marta R. Costa-jussa | Cristina España-Bonet | Angela Fan | Christian Federmann | Markus Freitag | Yvette Graham | Roman Grundkiewicz | Barry Haddow | Leonie Harter | Kenneth Heafield | Christopher Homan | Matthias Huck | Kwabena Amponsah-Kaakyire | Jungo Kasai | Daniel Khashabi | Kevin Knight | Tom Kocmi | Philipp Koehn | Nicholas Lourie | Christof Monz | Makoto Morishita | Masaaki Nagata | Ajay Nagesh | Toshiaki Nakazawa | Matteo Negri | Santanu Pal | Allahsera Auguste Tapo | Marco Turchi | Valentin Vydrin | Marcos Zampieri
Proceedings of the Sixth Conference on Machine Translation

This paper presents the results of the newstranslation task, the multilingual low-resourcetranslation for Indo-European languages, thetriangular translation task, and the automaticpost-editing task organised as part of the Con-ference on Machine Translation (WMT) 2021.In the news task, participants were asked tobuild machine translation systems for any of10 language pairs, to be evaluated on test setsconsisting mainly of news stories. The taskwas also opened up to additional test suites toprobe specific aspects of translation.

MeetDot: Videoconferencing with Live Translation Captions
Arkady Arkhangorodsky | Christopher Chu | Scot Fang | Yiqi Huang | Denglin Jiang | Ajay Nagesh | Boliang Zhang | Kevin Knight
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations

We present MeetDot, a videoconferencing system with live translation captions overlaid on screen. The system aims to facilitate conversation between people who speak different languages, thereby reducing communication barriers between multilingual participants. Currently, our system supports speech and captions in 4 languages and combines automatic speech recognition (ASR) and machine translation (MT) in a cascade. We use the re-translation strategy to translate the streamed speech, resulting in caption flicker. Additionally, our system has very strict latency requirements to have acceptable call quality. We implement several features to enhance user experience and reduce their cognitive load, such as smooth scrolling captions and reducing caption flicker. The modular architecture allows us to integrate different ASR and MT services in our backend. Our system provides an integrated evaluation suite to optimize key intrinsic evaluation metrics such as accuracy, latency and erasure. Finally, we present an innovative cross-lingual word-guessing game as an extrinsic evaluation metric to measure end-to-end system performance. We plan to make our system open-source for research purposes.


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Ebrahim Ansari | Amittai Axelrod | Nguyen Bach | Ondřej Bojar | Roldano Cattoni | Fahim Dalvi | Nadir Durrani | Marcello Federico | Christian Federmann | Jiatao Gu | Fei Huang | Kevin Knight | Xutai Ma | Ajay Nagesh | Matteo Negri | Jan Niehues | Juan Pino | Elizabeth Salesky | Xing Shi | Sebastian Stüker | Marco Turchi | Alexander Waibel | Changhan Wang
Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Spoken Language Translation

The evaluation campaign of the International Conference on Spoken Language Translation (IWSLT 2020) featured this year six challenge tracks: (i) Simultaneous speech translation, (ii) Video speech translation, (iii) Offline speech translation, (iv) Conversational speech translation, (v) Open domain translation, and (vi) Non-native speech translation. A total of teams participated in at least one of the tracks. This paper introduces each track’s goal, data and evaluation metrics, and reports the results of the received submissions.

Parallel Corpus Filtering via Pre-trained Language Models
Boliang Zhang | Ajay Nagesh | Kevin Knight
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Web-crawled data provides a good source of parallel corpora for training machine translation models. It is automatically obtained, but extremely noisy, and recent work shows that neural machine translation systems are more sensitive to noise than traditional statistical machine translation methods. In this paper, we propose a novel approach to filter out noisy sentence pairs from web-crawled corpora via pre-trained language models. We measure sentence parallelism by leveraging the multilingual capability of BERT and use the Generative Pre-training (GPT) language model as a domain filter to balance data domains. We evaluate the proposed method on the WMT 2018 Parallel Corpus Filtering shared task, and on our own web-crawled Japanese-Chinese parallel corpus. Our method significantly outperforms baselines and achieves a new state-of-the-art. In an unsupervised setting, our method achieves comparable performance to the top-1 supervised method. We also evaluate on a web-crawled Japanese-Chinese parallel corpus that we make publicly available.


Lightly-supervised Representation Learning with Global Interpretability
Andrew Zupon | Maria Alexeeva | Marco Valenzuela-Escárcega | Ajay Nagesh | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the Third Workshop on Structured Prediction for NLP

We propose a lightly-supervised approach for information extraction, in particular named entity classification, which combines the benefits of traditional bootstrapping, i.e., use of limited annotations and interpretability of extraction patterns, with the robust learning approaches proposed in representation learning. Our algorithm iteratively learns custom embeddings for both the multi-word entities to be extracted and the patterns that match them from a few example entities per category. We demonstrate that this representation-based approach outperforms three other state-of-the-art bootstrapping approaches on two datasets: CoNLL-2003 and OntoNotes. Additionally, using these embeddings, our approach outputs a globally-interpretable model consisting of a decision list, by ranking patterns based on their proximity to the average entity embedding in a given class. We show that this interpretable model performs close to our complete bootstrapping model, proving that representation learning can be used to produce interpretable models with small loss in performance. This decision list can be edited by human experts to mitigate some of that loss and in some cases outperform the original model.

Semi-Supervised Teacher-Student Architecture for Relation Extraction
Fan Luo | Ajay Nagesh | Rebecca Sharp | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the Third Workshop on Structured Prediction for NLP

Generating a large amount of training data for information extraction (IE) is either costly (if annotations are created manually), or runs the risk of introducing noisy instances (if distant supervision is used). On the other hand, semi-supervised learning (SSL) is a cost-efficient solution to combat lack of training data. In this paper, we adapt Mean Teacher (Tarvainen and Valpola, 2017), a denoising SSL framework to extract semantic relations between pairs of entities. We explore the sweet spot of amount of supervision required for good performance on this binary relation extraction task. Additionally, different syntax representations are incorporated into our models to enhance the learned representation of sentences. We evaluate our approach on the Google-IISc Distant Supervision (GDS) dataset, which removes test data noise present in all previous distance supervision datasets, which makes it a reliable evaluation benchmark (Jat et al., 2017). Our results show that the SSL Mean Teacher approach nears the performance of fully-supervised approaches even with only 10% of the labeled corpus. Further, the syntax-aware model outperforms other syntax-free approaches across all levels of supervision.

Eidos, INDRA, & Delphi: From Free Text to Executable Causal Models
Rebecca Sharp | Adarsh Pyarelal | Benjamin Gyori | Keith Alcock | Egoitz Laparra | Marco A. Valenzuela-Escárcega | Ajay Nagesh | Vikas Yadav | John Bachman | Zheng Tang | Heather Lent | Fan Luo | Mithun Paul | Steven Bethard | Kobus Barnard | Clayton Morrison | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Demonstrations)

Building causal models of complicated phenomena such as food insecurity is currently a slow and labor-intensive manual process. In this paper, we introduce an approach that builds executable probabilistic models from raw, free text. The proposed approach is implemented through three systems: Eidos, INDRA, and Delphi. Eidos is an open-domain machine reading system designed to extract causal relations from natural language. It is rule-based, allowing for rapid domain transfer, customizability, and interpretability. INDRA aggregates multiple sources of causal information and performs assembly to create a coherent knowledge base and assess its reliability. This assembled knowledge serves as the starting point for modeling. Delphi is a modeling framework that assembles quantified causal fragments and their contexts into executable probabilistic models that respect the semantics of the original text, and can be used to support decision making.

Exploration of Noise Strategies in Semi-supervised Named Entity Classification
Pooja Lakshmi Narayan | Ajay Nagesh | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the Eighth Joint Conference on Lexical and Computational Semantics (*SEM 2019)

Noise is inherent in real world datasets and modeling noise is critical during training as it is effective in regularization. Recently, novel semi-supervised deep learning techniques have demonstrated tremendous potential when learning with very limited labeled training data in image processing tasks. A critical aspect of these semi-supervised learning techniques is augmenting the input or the network with noise to be able to learn robust models. While modeling noise is relatively straightforward in continuous domains such as image classification, it is not immediately apparent how noise can be modeled in discrete domains such as language. Our work aims to address this gap by exploring different noise strategies for the semi-supervised named entity classification task, including statistical methods such as adding Gaussian noise to input embeddings, and linguistically-inspired ones such as dropping words and replacing words with their synonyms. We compare their performance on two benchmark datasets (OntoNotes and CoNLL) for named entity classification. Our results indicate that noise strategies that are linguistically informed perform at least as well as statistical approaches, while being simpler and requiring minimal tuning.


Grounding Gradable Adjectives through Crowdsourcing
Rebecca Sharp | Mithun Paul | Ajay Nagesh | Dane Bell | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the Eleventh International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC 2018)

Keep Your Bearings: Lightly-Supervised Information Extraction with Ladder Networks That Avoids Semantic Drift
Ajay Nagesh | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 2 (Short Papers)

We propose a novel approach to semi-supervised learning for information extraction that uses ladder networks (Rasmus et al., 2015). In particular, we focus on the task of named entity classification, defined as identifying the correct label (e.g., person or organization name) of an entity mention in a given context. Our approach is simple, efficient and has the benefit of being robust to semantic drift, a dominant problem in most semi-supervised learning systems. We empirically demonstrate the superior performance of our system compared to the state-of-the-art on two standard datasets for named entity classification. We obtain between 62% and 200% improvement over the state-of-art baseline on these two datasets.

Visual Supervision in Bootstrapped Information Extraction
Matthew Berger | Ajay Nagesh | Joshua Levine | Mihai Surdeanu | Helen Zhang
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

We challenge a common assumption in active learning, that a list-based interface populated by informative samples provides for efficient and effective data annotation. We show how a 2D scatterplot populated with diverse and representative samples can yield improved models given the same time budget. We consider this for bootstrapping-based information extraction, in particular named entity classification, where human and machine jointly label data. To enable effective data annotation in a scatterplot, we have developed an embedding-based bootstrapping model that learns the distributional similarity of entities through the patterns that match them in a large data corpus, while being discriminative with respect to human-labeled and machine-promoted entities. We conducted a user study to assess the effectiveness of these different interfaces, and analyze bootstrapping performance in terms of human labeling accuracy, label quantity, and labeling consensus across multiple users. Our results suggest that supervision acquired from the scatterplot interface, despite being noisier, yields improvements in classification performance compared with the list interface, due to a larger quantity of supervision acquired.

An Exploration of Three Lightly-supervised Representation Learning Approaches for Named Entity Classification
Ajay Nagesh | Mihai Surdeanu
Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Several semi-supervised representation learning methods have been proposed recently that mitigate the drawbacks of traditional bootstrapping: they reduce the amount of semantic drift introduced by iterative approaches through one-shot learning; others address the sparsity of data through the learning of custom, dense representation for the information modeled. In this work, we are the first to adapt three of these methods, most of which have been originally proposed for image processing, to an information extraction task, specifically, named entity classification. Further, we perform a rigorous comparative analysis on two distinct datasets. Our analysis yields several important observations. First, all representation learning methods outperform state-of-the-art semi-supervised methods that do not rely on representation learning. To the best of our knowledge, we report the latest state-of-the-art results on the semi-supervised named entity classification task. Second, one-shot learning methods clearly outperform iterative representation learning approaches. Lastly, one of the best performers relies on the mean teacher framework (Tarvainen and Valpola, 2017), a simple teacher/student approach that is independent of the underlying task-specific model.


Call for Discussion: Building a New Standard Dataset for Relation Extraction Tasks
Teresa Martin | Fiete Botschen | Ajay Nagesh | Andrew McCallum
Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Automated Knowledge Base Construction

Wisdom of Students: A Consistent Automatic Short Answer Grading Technique
Shourya Roy | Sandipan Dandapat | Ajay Nagesh | Y. Narahari
Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Natural Language Processing


Optimizing Multivariate Performance Measures for Learning Relation Extraction Models
Gholamreza Haffari | Ajay Nagesh | Ganesh Ramakrishnan
Proceedings of the 2015 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Exploring Relational Features and Learning under Distant Supervision for Information Extraction Tasks
Ajay Nagesh
Proceedings of the 2015 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Student Research Workshop


Noisy Or-based model for Relation Extraction using Distant Supervision
Ajay Nagesh | Gholamreza Haffari | Ganesh Ramakrishnan
Proceedings of the 2014 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)


Towards Efficient Named-Entity Rule Induction for Customizability
Ajay Nagesh | Ganesh Ramakrishnan | Laura Chiticariu | Rajasekar Krishnamurthy | Ankush Dharkar | Pushpak Bhattacharyya
Proceedings of the 2012 Joint Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and Computational Natural Language Learning