Yasheng Wang


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UniDS: A Unified Dialogue System for Chit-Chat and Task-oriented Dialogues
Xinyan Zhao | Bin He | Yasheng Wang | Yitong Li | Fei Mi | Yajiao Liu | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu | Huanhuan Chen
Proceedings of the Second DialDoc Workshop on Document-grounded Dialogue and Conversational Question Answering

With the advances in deep learning, tremendous progress has been made with chit-chat dialogue systems and task-oriented dialogue systems. However, these two systems are often tackled separately in current methods. To achieve more natural interaction with humans, dialogue systems need to be capable of both chatting and accomplishing tasks. To this end, we propose a unified dialogue system (UniDS) with the two aforementioned skills. In particular, we design a unified dialogue data schema, compatible for both chit-chat and task-oriented dialogues. Besides, we propose a two-stage training method to train UniDS based on the unified dialogue data schema. UniDS does not need to adding extra parameters to existing chit-chat dialogue systems. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed UniDS works comparably well as the state-of-the-art chit-chat dialogue systems and task-oriented dialogue systems. More importantly, UniDS achieves better robustness than pure dialogue systems and satisfactory switch ability between two types of dialogues.

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Compilable Neural Code Generation with Compiler Feedback
Xin Wang | Yasheng Wang | Yao Wan | Fei Mi | Yitong Li | Pingyi Zhou | Jin Liu | Hao Wu | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2022

Automatically generating compilable programs with (or without) natural language descriptions has always been a touchstone problem for computational linguistics and automated software engineering. Existing deep-learning approaches model code generation as text generation, either constrained by grammar structures in decoder, or driven by pre-trained language models on large-scale code corpus (e.g., CodeGPT, PLBART, and CodeT5). However, few of them account for compilability of the generated programs. To improve compilability of the generated programs, this paper proposes COMPCODER, a three-stage pipeline utilizing compiler feedback for compilable code generation, including language model fine-tuning, compilability reinforcement, and compilability discrimination. Comprehensive experiments on two code generation tasks demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed approach, improving the success rate of compilation from 44.18 to 89.18 in code completion on average and from 70.3 to 96.2 in text-to-code generation, respectively, when comparing with the state-of-the-art CodeGPT.

LMTurk: Few-Shot Learners as Crowdsourcing Workers in a Language-Model-as-a-Service Framework
Mengjie Zhao | Fei Mi | Yasheng Wang | Minglei Li | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu | Hinrich Schuetze
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: NAACL 2022

Vast efforts have been devoted to creating high-performance few-shot learners, i.e., large-scale pretrained language models (PLMs) that perform well with little downstream task training data. Training PLMs has incurred significant cost, but utilizing the few-shot learners is still challenging due to their enormous size. This work focuses on a crucial question: How to make effective use of these few-shot learners? We propose LMTurk, a novel approach that treats few-shotlearners as crowdsourcing workers. The rationale is that crowdsourcing workers are in fact few-shot learners: They are shown a few illustrative examples to learn about a task and then start annotating. LMTurk employs few-shot learners built upon PLMs as workers. We show that the resulting annotations can be utilized to train models that solve the task well and are small enough to be deployable in practical scenarios. Active learning is integrated into LMTurk to reduce the amount of queries made to PLMs, minimizing the computational cost of running PLM inference passes. Altogether, LMTurk is an important step towards making effective use of current PLMs.

CODE-MVP: Learning to Represent Source Code from Multiple Views with Contrastive Pre-Training
Xin Wang | Yasheng Wang | Yao Wan | Jiawei Wang | Pingyi Zhou | Li Li | Hao Wu | Jin Liu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: NAACL 2022

Recent years have witnessed increasing interest in code representation learning, which aims to represent the semantics of source code into distributed vectors. Currently, various works have been proposed to represent the complex semantics of source code from different views, including plain text, Abstract Syntax Tree (AST), and several kinds of code graphs (e.g., Control/Data Flow Graph). However, most of them only consider a single view of source code independently, ignoring the correspondences among different views. In this paper, we propose to integrate different views with the natural-language description of source code into a unified framework with Multi-View contrastive Pre-training, and name our model as CODE-MVP. Specifically, we first extract multiple code views using compiler tools, and learn the complementary information among them under a contrastive learning framework. Inspired by the type checking in compilation, we also design a fine-grained type inference objective in the pre-training. Experiments on three downstream tasks over five datasets demonstrate the superiority of CODE-MVP when compared with several state-of-the-art baselines. For example, we achieve 2.4/2.3/1.1 gain in terms of MRR/MAP/Accuracy metrics on natural language code retrieval, code similarity, and code defect detection tasks, respectively.

Leveraging Only the Category Name for Aspect Detection through Prompt-based Constrained Clustering
Yazheng Li | Pengyun Wang | Yasheng Wang | Yong Dai | Yadao Wang | Lujia Pan | Zenglin Xu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Aspect category detection (ACD) aims to automatically identify user-concerned aspects from online reviews, which is of great value for evaluating the fine-grained performance of a product. The most recent solutions tackle this problem via weakly supervised methods, achieving remarkable improvement over unsupervised methods. However, a closer look at these methods reveals that the required human efforts are nontrivial and can sometimes be hard to obtain. In this study, we explore the possibility of minimizing human guidance while improving detection performance, with a deep clustering method that relies merely on the category name of each aspect and a pretrained language model (LM). The LM, combined with prompt techniques, is employed as a knowledge base to automatically generate constraints for clustering, as well as to provide a representation space to perform the clustering. Our method (1) extracts extensive keywords to expand our understanding of each aspect, (2) automatically generates instance-level and concept-level constraints for clustering, and (3) trains the clustering model with the above constraints. We demonstrate the capability of the proposed framework through extensive experiments on nine benchmark datasets. Our model not only performs noticeably better than existing unsupervised approaches but also considerably surpasses weakly supervised methods that require more human efforts.

Towards Identifying Social Bias in Dialog Systems: Framework, Dataset, and Benchmark
Jingyan Zhou | Jiawen Deng | Fei Mi | Yitong Li | Yasheng Wang | Minlie Huang | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu | Helen Meng
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Among all the safety concerns that hinder the deployment of open-domain dialog systems (e.g., offensive languages, biases, and toxic behaviors), social bias presents an insidious challenge. Addressing this challenge requires rigorous analyses and normative reasoning. In this paper, we focus our investigation on social bias measurement to facilitate the development of unbiased dialog systems. We first propose a novel Dial-Bias Framework for analyzing the social bias in conversations using a holistic method beyond bias lexicons or dichotomous annotations. Leveraging the proposed framework, we further introduce the CDial-Bias Dataset which is, to the best of our knowledge, the first annotated Chinese social bias dialog dataset. We also establish a fine-grained dialog bias measurement benchmark and conduct in-depth ablation studies to shed light on the utility of the detailed annotations in the proposed dataset. Finally, we evaluate representative Chinese generative models with our classifiers to unveil the presence of social bias in these systems.

Constructing Highly Inductive Contexts for Dialogue Safety through Controllable Reverse Generation
Zhexin Zhang | Jiale Cheng | Hao Sun | Jiawen Deng | Fei Mi | Yasheng Wang | Lifeng Shang | Minlie Huang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Large pretrained language models can easily produce toxic or biased content, which is prohibitive for practical use. In order to detect such toxic generations, existing methods rely on templates, real-world data extraction, crowdsourcing workers or automatic generation to construct adversarial contexts that are likely to induce toxic generations. However, what type of context is more likely to induce unsafe responses is still under-explored. In this paper, we identify that context toxicity and context category (e.g., profanity, insult, drugs, etc.) are two important factors to cause safety issues in response generation. Hence, we propose a method called reverse generation to construct adversarial contexts conditioned on a given response, with the flexibility to control category, toxicity level and inductivity of the generated contexts. Via reverse generation, we augment the existing BAD dataset and construct a new dataset BAD+ which contains more than 120K diverse and highly inductive contexts in 12 categories. We test three popular pretrained dialogue models (Blender, DialoGPT and Plato2) and find that BAD+ can largely expose their safety problems. Furthermore, we show that BAD+ can greatly enhance the safety of generation, and we reveal the key factors of safety improvement. Our code and dataset is available at https://github.com/thu-coai/Reverse_Generation.

Pan More Gold from the Sand: Refining Open-domain Dialogue Training with Noisy Self-Retrieval Generation
Yihe Wang | Yitong Li | Yasheng Wang | Fei Mi | Pingyi Zhou | Xin Wang | Jin Liu | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu
Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

Real human conversation data are complicated, heterogeneous, and noisy, from which building open-domain dialogue systems remains a challenging task. In fact, such dialogue data still contains a wealth of information and knowledge, however, they are not fully explored. In this paper, we show existing open-domain dialogue generation methods that memorize context-response paired data with autoregressive or encode-decode language models underutilize the training data. Different from current approaches, using external knowledge, we explore a retrieval-generation training framework that can take advantage of the heterogeneous and noisy training data by considering them as “evidence”. In particular, we use BERTScore for retrieval, which gives better qualities of the evidence and generation. Experiments over publicly available datasets demonstrate that our method can help models generate better responses, even such training data are usually impressed as low-quality data. Such performance gain is comparable with those improved by enlarging the training set, even better. We also found that the model performance has a positive correlation with the relevance of the retrieved evidence. Moreover, our method performed well on zero-shot experiments, which indicates that our method can be more robust to real-world data.

Offline-to-Online Co-Evolutional User Simulator and Dialogue System
Dafeng Chi | Yuzheng Zhuang | Yao Mu | Bin Wang | Jianzhu Bao | Yasheng Wang | Yuhan Dong | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu | Jianye Hao
Proceedings of the Towards Semi-Supervised and Reinforced Task-Oriented Dialog Systems (SereTOD)

Reinforcement learning (RL) has emerged as a promising approach to fine-tune offline pretrained GPT-2 model in task-oriented dialogue (TOD) systems. In order to obtain human-like online interactions while extending the usage of RL, building pretrained user simulators (US) along with dialogue systems (DS) and facilitating jointly fine-tuning via RL becomes prevalent. However, joint training brings distributional shift problem caused by compounding exposure bias. Existing methods usually iterative update US and DS to ameliorate the ensued non-stationarity problem, which could lead to sub-optimal policy and less sample efficiency. To take a step further for tackling the problem, we introduce an Offline-to-oNline Co-Evolutional (ONCE) framework, which enables bias-aware concurrent joint update for RL-based fine-tuning whilst takes advantages from GPT-2 based end-to-end modeling on US and DS. Extensive experiments demonstrate that ONCE builds high-quality loops of policy learning and dialogues data collection, and achieves state-of-the-art online and offline evaluation results on MultiWOZ2.1 dataset. Opensourced code will be implemented with Mindspore (MS, 2022) and released on our homepage.

Revisiting Pre-trained Language Models and their Evaluation for Arabic Natural Language Processing
Abbas Ghaddar | Yimeng Wu | Sunyam Bagga | Ahmad Rashid | Khalil Bibi | Mehdi Rezagholizadeh | Chao Xing | Yasheng Wang | Xinyu Duan | Zhefeng Wang | Baoxing Huai | Xin Jiang | Qun Liu | Phillippe Langlais
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

There is a growing body of work in recent years to develop pre-trained language models (PLMs) for the Arabic language. This work addresses two major problems in existing Arabic PLMs that limit the progress of the Arabic NLU and NLG fields. First, existing Arabic PLMs are not well-explored and their pre-training can be improved significantly using a more methodical approach. Second, there is a lack of systematic and reproducible evaluation of these models in the literature. We revisit both the pre-training and evaluation of Arabic PLMs. In terms of pre-training, we explore the impact of the quality of the pretraining data, the size of the model, and the incorporation of character-level information on Arabic PLM. As a result, we release three new Arabic BERT-style models ( JABER, Char-JABER, and SABER), and two T5-style models (AT5S and AT5B). In terms of evaluation, we conduct a comprehensive empirical study to systematically evaluate the performance of existing state-of-the-art models on ALUE, a leaderboard-powered benchmark for Arabic NLU tasks, and on a subset of the Arabic generative tasks. We show that our models significantly outperform existing Arabic PLMs and achieve a new state-of-the-art performance on discriminative and generative Arabic NLU and NLG tasks. Our models and source code to reproduce results will be made available upon acceptance.

Momentum Contrastive Pre-training for Question Answering
Minda Hu | Muzhi Li | Yasheng Wang | Irwin King
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Existing pre-training methods for extractive Question Answering (QA) generate cloze-like queries different from natural questions in syntax structure, which could overfit pre-trained models to simple keyword matching. In order to address this problem, we propose a novel Momentum Contrastive pRe-training fOr queStion anSwering (MCROSS) method for extractive QA. Specifically, MCROSS introduces a momentum contrastive learning framework to align the answer probability between cloze-like and natural query-passage sample pairs. Hence, the pre-trained models can better transfer the knowledge learned in cloze-like samples to answering natural questions. Experimental results on three benchmarking QA datasets show that our method achieves noticeable improvement compared with all baselines in both supervised and zero-shot scenarios.

AEG: Argumentative Essay Generation via A Dual-Decoder Model with Content Planning
Jianzhu Bao | Yasheng Wang | Yitong Li | Fei Mi | Ruifeng Xu
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Argument generation is an important but challenging task in computational argumentation.Existing studies have mainly focused on generating individual short arguments, while research on generating long and coherent argumentative essays is still under-explored.In this paper, we propose a new task, Argumentative Essay Generation (AEG).Given a writing prompt, the goal of AEG is to automatically generate an argumentative essay with strong persuasiveness.We construct a large-scale dataset, ArgEssay, for this new task and establish a strong model based on a dual-decoder Transformer architecture.Our proposed model contains two decoders, a planning decoder (PD) and a writing decoder (WD), where PD is used to generate a sequence for essay content planning and WD incorporates the planning information to write an essay.Further, we pre-train this model on a large news dataset to enhance the plan-and-write paradigm.Automatic and human evaluation results show that our model can generate more coherent and persuasive essays with higher diversity and less repetition compared to several baselines.


Hidden Killer: Invisible Textual Backdoor Attacks with Syntactic Trigger
Fanchao Qi | Mukai Li | Yangyi Chen | Zhengyan Zhang | Zhiyuan Liu | Yasheng Wang | Maosong Sun
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Backdoor attacks are a kind of insidious security threat against machine learning models. After being injected with a backdoor in training, the victim model will produce adversary-specified outputs on the inputs embedded with predesigned triggers but behave properly on normal inputs during inference. As a sort of emergent attack, backdoor attacks in natural language processing (NLP) are investigated insufficiently. As far as we know, almost all existing textual backdoor attack methods insert additional contents into normal samples as triggers, which causes the trigger-embedded samples to be detected and the backdoor attacks to be blocked without much effort. In this paper, we propose to use the syntactic structure as the trigger in textual backdoor attacks. We conduct extensive experiments to demonstrate that the syntactic trigger-based attack method can achieve comparable attack performance (almost 100% success rate) to the insertion-based methods but possesses much higher invisibility and stronger resistance to defenses. These results also reveal the significant insidiousness and harmfulness of textual backdoor attacks. All the code and data of this paper can be obtained at https://github.com/thunlp/HiddenKiller.

Better Robustness by More Coverage: Adversarial and Mixup Data Augmentation for Robust Finetuning
Chenglei Si | Zhengyan Zhang | Fanchao Qi | Zhiyuan Liu | Yasheng Wang | Qun Liu | Maosong Sun
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL-IJCNLP 2021


Sentiment Lexicon Expansion Based on Neural PU Learning, Double Dictionary Lookup, and Polarity Association
Yasheng Wang | Yang Zhang | Bing Liu
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Although many sentiment lexicons in different languages exist, most are not comprehensive. In a recent sentiment analysis application, we used a large Chinese sentiment lexicon and found that it missed a large number of sentiment words in social media. This prompted us to make a new attempt to study sentiment lexicon expansion. This paper first poses the problem as a PU learning problem, which is a new formulation. It then proposes a new PU learning method suitable for our problem using a neural network. The results are enhanced further with a new dictionary-based technique and a novel polarity classification technique. Experimental results show that the proposed approach outperforms baseline methods greatly.