Maor Ivgi


Scaling Laws Under the Microscope: Predicting Transformer Performance from Small Scale Experiments
Maor Ivgi | Yair Carmon | Jonathan Berant
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Neural scaling laws define a predictable relationship between a model’s parameter count and its performance after training in the form of a power law. However, most research to date has not explicitly investigated whether scaling laws can be used to accelerate model development. In this work, we perform such an empirical investigation across a wide range of language understanding tasks, starting from models with as few as 10K parameters, and evaluate downstream performance across 9 language understanding tasks.We find that scaling laws emerge at finetuning time in some NLP tasks, and that they can also be exploited for debugging convergence when training large models. Moreover, for tasks where scaling laws exist, they can be used to predict the performance of larger models, which enables effective model selection. However, revealing scaling lawsrequires careful hyperparameter tuning and multiple runs for the purpose of uncertainty estimation, which incurs additional overhead, partially offsetting the computational benefits.

SCROLLS: Standardized CompaRison Over Long Language Sequences
Uri Shaham | Elad Segal | Maor Ivgi | Avia Efrat | Ori Yoran | Adi Haviv | Ankit Gupta | Wenhan Xiong | Mor Geva | Jonathan Berant | Omer Levy
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

NLP benchmarks have largely focused on short texts, such as sentences and paragraphs, even though long texts comprise a considerable amount of natural language in the wild. We introduce SCROLLS, a suite of tasks that require reasoning over long texts. We examine existing long-text datasets, and handpick ones where the text is naturally long, while prioritizing tasks that involve synthesizing information across the input. SCROLLS contains summarization, question answering, and natural language inference tasks, covering multiple domains, including literature, science, business, and entertainment. Initial baselines, including Longformer Encoder-Decoder, indicate that there is ample room for improvement on SCROLLS. We make all datasets available in a unified text-to-text format and host a live leaderboard to facilitate research on model architecture and pretraining methods.


Achieving Model Robustness through Discrete Adversarial Training
Maor Ivgi | Jonathan Berant
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Discrete adversarial attacks are symbolic perturbations to a language input that preserve the output label but lead to a prediction error. While such attacks have been extensively explored for the purpose of evaluating model robustness, their utility for improving robustness has been limited to offline augmentation only. Concretely, given a trained model, attacks are used to generate perturbed (adversarial) examples, and the model is re-trained exactly once. In this work, we address this gap and leverage discrete attacks for online augmentation, where adversarial examples are generated at every training step, adapting to the changing nature of the model. We propose (i) a new discrete attack, based on best-first search, and (ii) random sampling attacks that unlike prior work are not based on expensive search-based procedures. Surprisingly, we find that random sampling leads to impressive gains in robustness, outperforming the commonly-used offline augmentation, while leading to a speedup at training time of ~10x. Furthermore, online augmentation with search-based attacks justifies the higher training cost, significantly improving robustness on three datasets. Last, we show that our new attack substantially improves robustness compared to prior methods.