Charles Ollion


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Learning Natural Language Generation with Truncated Reinforcement Learning
Alice Martin | Guillaume Quispe | Charles Ollion | Sylvain Le Corff | Florian Strub | Olivier Pietquin
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

This paper introduces TRUncated ReinForcement Learning for Language (TrufLL), an original approach to train conditional languagemodels without a supervised learning phase, by only using reinforcement learning (RL). As RL methods unsuccessfully scale to large action spaces, we dynamically truncate the vocabulary space using a generic language model. TrufLL thus enables to train a language agent by solely interacting with its environment without any task-specific prior knowledge; it is only guided with a task-agnostic language model. Interestingly, this approach avoids the dependency to labelled datasets and inherently reduces pretrained policy flaws such as language or exposure biases. We evaluate TrufLL on two visual question generation tasks, for which we report positive results over performance and language metrics, which we then corroborate with a human evaluation. To our knowledge, it is the first approach that successfully learns a language generation policy without pre-training, using only reinforcement learning.