Fahim Faisal


Dataset Geography: Mapping Language Data to Language Users
Fahim Faisal | Yinkai Wang | Antonios Anastasopoulos
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

As language technologies become more ubiquitous, there are increasing efforts towards expanding the language diversity and coverage of natural language processing (NLP) systems. Arguably, the most important factor influencing the quality of modern NLP systems is data availability. In this work, we study the geographical representativeness of NLP datasets, aiming to quantify if and by how much do NLP datasets match the expected needs of the language speakers. In doing so, we use entity recognition and linking systems, also making important observations about their cross-lingual consistency and giving suggestions for more robust evaluation. Last, we explore some geographical and economic factors that may explain the observed dataset distributions.

Phylogeny-Inspired Adaptation of Multilingual Models to New Languages
Fahim Faisal | Antonios Anastasopoulos
Proceedings of the 2nd Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 12th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Large pretrained multilingual models, trained on dozens of languages, have delivered promising results due to cross-lingual learning capabilities on a variety of language tasks. Further adapting these models to specific languages, especially ones unseen during pre-training, is an important goal toward expanding the coverage of language technologies. In this study, we show how we can use language phylogenetic information to improve cross-lingual transfer leveraging closely related languages in a structured, linguistically-informed manner. We perform adapter-based training on languages from diverse language families (Germanic, Uralic, Tupian, Uto-Aztecan) and evaluate on both syntactic and semantic tasks, obtaining more than 20% relative performance improvements over strong commonly used baselines, especially on languages unseen during pre-training.

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Findings of the VarDial Evaluation Campaign 2022
Noëmi Aepli | Antonios Anastasopoulos | Adrian-Gabriel Chifu | William Domingues | Fahim Faisal | Mihaela Gaman | Radu Tudor Ionescu | Yves Scherrer
Proceedings of the Ninth Workshop on NLP for Similar Languages, Varieties and Dialects

This report presents the results of the shared tasks organized as part of the VarDial Evaluation Campaign 2022. The campaign is part of the ninth workshop on Natural Language Processing (NLP) for Similar Languages, Varieties and Dialects (VarDial), co-located with COLING 2022. Three separate shared tasks were included this year: Identification of Languages and Dialects of Italy (ITDI), French Cross-Domain Dialect Identification (FDI), and Dialectal Extractive Question Answering (DialQA). All three tasks were organized for the first time this year.

Findings of the WMT’22 Shared Task on Large-Scale Machine Translation Evaluation for African Languages
David Adelani | Md Mahfuz Ibn Alam | Antonios Anastasopoulos | Akshita Bhagia | Marta R. Costa-jussà | Jesse Dodge | Fahim Faisal | Christian Federmann | Natalia Fedorova | Francisco Guzmán | Sergey Koshelev | Jean Maillard | Vukosi Marivate | Jonathan Mbuya | Alexandre Mourachko | Safiyyah Saleem | Holger Schwenk | Guillaume Wenzek
Proceedings of the Seventh Conference on Machine Translation (WMT)

We present the results of the WMT’22 SharedTask on Large-Scale Machine Translation Evaluation for African Languages. The shared taskincluded both a data and a systems track, alongwith additional innovations, such as a focus onAfrican languages and extensive human evaluation of submitted systems. We received 14system submissions from 8 teams, as well as6 data track contributions. We report a largeprogress in the quality of translation for Africanlanguages since the last iteration of this sharedtask: there is an increase of about 7.5 BLEUpoints across 72 language pairs, and the average BLEU scores went from 15.09 to 22.60.


Investigating Post-pretraining Representation Alignment for Cross-Lingual Question Answering
Fahim Faisal | Antonios Anastasopoulos
Proceedings of the 3rd Workshop on Machine Reading for Question Answering

Human knowledge is collectively encoded in the roughly 6500 languages spoken around the world, but it is not distributed equally across languages. Hence, for information-seeking question answering (QA) systems to adequately serve speakers of all languages, they need to operate cross-lingually. In this work we investigate the capabilities of multilingually pretrained language models on cross-lingual QA. We find that explicitly aligning the representations across languages with a post-hoc finetuning step generally leads to improved performance. We additionally investigate the effect of data size as well as the language choice in this fine-tuning step, also releasing a dataset for evaluating cross-lingual QA systems.

SD-QA: Spoken Dialectal Question Answering for the Real World
Fahim Faisal | Sharlina Keshava | Md Mahfuz Ibn Alam | Antonios Anastasopoulos
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

Question answering (QA) systems are now available through numerous commercial applications for a wide variety of domains, serving millions of users that interact with them via speech interfaces. However, current benchmarks in QA research do not account for the errors that speech recognition models might introduce, nor do they consider the language variations (dialects) of the users. To address this gap, we augment an existing QA dataset to construct a multi-dialect, spoken QA benchmark on five languages (Arabic, Bengali, English, Kiswahili, Korean) with more than 68k audio prompts in 24 dialects from 255 speakers. We provide baseline results showcasing the real-world performance of QA systems and analyze the effect of language variety and other sensitive speaker attributes on downstream performance. Last, we study the fairness of the ASR and QA models with respect to the underlying user populations.

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Code to Comment Translation: A Comparative Study on Model Effectiveness & Errors
Junayed Mahmud | Fahim Faisal | Raihan Islam Arnob | Antonios Anastasopoulos | Kevin Moran
Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Natural Language Processing for Programming (NLP4Prog 2021)

Automated source code summarization is a popular software engineering research topic wherein machine translation models are employed to “translate” code snippets into relevant natural language descriptions. Most evaluations of such models are conducted using automatic reference-based metrics. However, given the relatively large semantic gap between programming languages and natural language, we argue that this line of research would benefit from a qualitative investigation into the various error modes of current state-of-the-art models. Therefore, in this work, we perform both a quantitative and qualitative comparison of three recently proposed source code summarization models. In our quantitative evaluation, we compare the models based on the smoothed BLEU-4, METEOR, and ROUGE-L machine translation metrics, and in our qualitative evaluation, we perform a manual open-coding of the most common errors committed by the models when compared to ground truth captions. Our investigation reveals new insights into the relationship between metric-based performance and model prediction errors grounded in an error taxonomy that can be used to drive future research efforts.