Transformer models have been used in automatic speech recognition (ASR) successfully and yields state-of-the-art results. However, its performance is still affected by speaker mismatch between training and test data. Further finetuning a trained model with target speaker data is the most natural approach for adaptation, but it takes a lot of compute and may cause catastrophic forgetting to the existing speakers. In this work, we propose a unified speaker adaptation approach consisting of feature adaptation and model adaptation. For feature adaptation, we employ a speaker-aware persistent memory model which generalizes better to unseen test speakers by making use of speaker i-vectors to form a persistent memory. For model adaptation, we use a novel gradual pruning method to adapt to target speakers without changing the model architecture, which to the best of our knowledge, has never been explored in ASR. Specifically, we gradually prune less contributing parameters on model encoder to a certain sparsity level, and use the pruned parameters for adaptation, while freezing the unpruned parameters to keep the original model performance. We conduct experiments on the Librispeech dataset. Our proposed approach brings relative 2.74-6.52% word error rate (WER) reduction on general speaker adaptation. On target speaker adaptation, our method outperforms the baseline with up to 20.58% relative WER reduction, and surpasses the finetuning method by up to relative 2.54%. Besides, with extremely low-resource adaptation data (e.g., 1 utterance), our method could improve the WER by relative 6.53% with only a few epochs of training.
Domain adaptation or transfer learning using pre-trained language models such as BERT has proven to be an effective approach for many natural language processing tasks. In this work, we propose to formulate word sense disambiguation as a relevance ranking task, and fine-tune BERT on sequence-pair ranking task to select the most probable sense definition given a context sentence and a list of candidate sense definitions. We also introduce a data augmentation technique for WSD using existing example sentences from WordNet. Using the proposed training objective and data augmentation technique, our models are able to achieve state-of-the-art results on the English all-words benchmark datasets.
Customized translation need pay spe-cial attention to the target domain ter-minology especially the named-entities for the domain. Adding linguistic features to neural machine translation (NMT) has been shown to benefit translation in many studies. In this paper, we further demonstrate that adding named-entity (NE) feature with named-entity recognition (NER) into the source language produces better translation with NMT. Our experiments show that by just including the different NE classes and boundary tags, we can increase the BLEU score by around 1 to 2 points using the standard test sets from WMT2017. We also show that adding NE tags using NER and applying in-domain adaptation can be combined to further improve customized machine translation.