Tanise Ceron


Optimizing text representations to capture (dis)similarity between political parties
Tanise Ceron | Nico Blokker | Sebastian Padó
Proceedings of the 26th Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning (CoNLL)

Even though fine-tuned neural language models have been pivotal in enabling “deep” automatic text analysis, optimizing text representations for specific applications remains a crucial bottleneck. In this study, we look at this problem in the context of a task from computational social science, namely modeling pairwise similarities between political parties. Our research question is what level of structural information is necessary to create robust text representation, contrasting a strongly informed approach (which uses both claim span and claim category annotations) with approaches that forgo one or both types of annotation with document structure-based heuristics. Evaluating our models on the manifestos of German parties for the 2021 federal election. We find that heuristics that maximize within-party over between-party similarity along with a normalization step lead to reliable party similarity prediction, without the need for manual annotation.

Algorithmic Diversity and Tiny Models: Comparing Binary Networks and the Fruit Fly Algorithm on Document Representation Tasks
Tanise Ceron | Nhut Truong | Aurelie Herbelot
Proceedings of The Third Workshop on Simple and Efficient Natural Language Processing (SustaiNLP)

Neural language models have seen a dramatic increase in size in the last years. While many still advocate that ‘bigger is better’, work in model distillation has shown that the number of parameters used by very large networks is actually more than what is required for state-of-the-art performance. This prompts an obvious question: can we build smaller models from scratch, rather than going through the inefficient process of training at scale and subsequently reducing model size. In this paper, we investigate the behaviour of a biologically inspired algorithm, based on the fruit fly’s olfactory system. This algorithm has shown good performance in the past on the task of learning word embeddings. We now put it to the test on the task of semantic hashing. Specifically, we compare the fruit fly to a standard binary network on the task of generating locality-sensitive hashes for text documents, measuring both task performance and energy consumption. Our results indicate that the two algorithms have complementary strengths while showing similar electricity usage.