Research papers and code for "Zhuosheng Zhang":
Answering questions from university admission exams (Gaokao in Chinese) is a challenging AI task since it requires effective representation to capture complicated semantic relations between questions and answers. In this work, we propose a hybrid neural model for deep question-answering task from history examinations. Our model employs a cooperative gated neural network to retrieve answers with the assistance of extra labels given by a neural turing machine labeler. Empirical study shows that the labeler works well with only a small training dataset and the gated mechanism is good at fetching the semantic representation of lengthy answers. Experiments on question answering demonstrate the proposed model obtains substantial performance gains over various neural model baselines in terms of multiple evaluation metrics.

* Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING 2018)
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Pinyin-to-character (P2C) conversion is the core component of pinyin-based Chinese input method engine (IME). However, the conversion is seriously compromised by the ambiguities of Chinese characters corresponding to pinyin as well as the predefined fixed vocabularies. To alleviate such inconveniences, we propose a neural P2C conversion model augmented by a large online updating vocabulary with a target vocabulary sampling mechanism. Our experiments show that the proposed approach reduces the decoding time on CPUs up to 50$\%$ on P2C tasks at the same or only negligible change in conversion accuracy, and the online updated vocabulary indeed helps our IME effectively follows user inputting behavior.

* 8 pages, 6 figures
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Representation learning is the foundation of machine reading comprehension. In state-of-the-art models, deep learning methods broadly use word and character level representations. However, character is not naturally the minimal linguistic unit. In addition, with a simple concatenation of character and word embedding, previous models actually give suboptimal solution. In this paper, we propose to use subword rather than character for word embedding enhancement. We also empirically explore different augmentation strategies on subword-augmented embedding to enhance the cloze-style reading comprehension model reader. In detail, we present a reader that uses subword-level representation to augment word embedding with a short list to handle rare words effectively. A thorough examination is conducted to evaluate the comprehensive performance and generalization ability of the proposed reader. Experimental results show that the proposed approach helps the reader significantly outperform the state-of-the-art baselines on various public datasets.

* Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING 2018)
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The goal of semantic role labeling (SRL) is to discover the predicate-argument structure of a sentence, which plays a critical role in deep processing of natural language. This paper introduces simple yet effective auxiliary tags for dependency-based SRL to enhance a syntax-agnostic model with multi-hop self-attention. Our syntax-agnostic model achieves competitive performance with state-of-the-art models on the CoNLL-2009 benchmarks both for English and Chinese.

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Machine reading comprehension is a task to model relationship between passage and query. In terms of deep learning framework, most of state-of-the-art models simply concatenate word and character level representations, which has been shown suboptimal for the concerned task. In this paper, we empirically explore different integration strategies of word and character embeddings and propose a character-augmented reader which attends character-level representation to augment word embedding with a short list to improve word representations, especially for rare words. Experimental results show that the proposed approach helps the baseline model significantly outperform state-of-the-art baselines on various public benchmarks.

* Accepted by NLPCC 2018. arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1806.09103
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This paper describes a hypernym discovery system for our participation in the SemEval-2018 Task 9, which aims to discover the best (set of) candidate hypernyms for input concepts or entities, given the search space of a pre-defined vocabulary. We introduce a neural network architecture for the concerned task and empirically study various neural network models to build the representations in latent space for words and phrases. The evaluated models include convolutional neural network, long-short term memory network, gated recurrent unit and recurrent convolutional neural network. We also explore different embedding methods, including word embedding and sense embedding for better performance.

* SemEval-2018, Workshop of NAACL-HLT 2018
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Multi-choice reading comprehension is a challenging task that requires complex reasoning procedure. Given passage and question, a correct answer need to be selected from a set of candidate answers. In this paper, we propose \textbf{D}ual \textbf{C}o-\textbf{M}atching \textbf{N}etwork (\textbf{DCMN}) which model the relationship among passage, question and answer bidirectionally. Different from existing approaches which only calculate question-aware or option-aware passage representation, we calculate passage-aware question representation and passage-aware answer representation at the same time. To demonstrate the effectiveness of our model, we evaluate our model on a large-scale multiple choice machine reading comprehension dataset({\em i.e.} RACE). Experimental result show that our proposed model achieves new state-of-the-art results.

* arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1806.04068 by other authors
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Multi-turn conversation understanding is a major challenge for building intelligent dialogue systems. This work focuses on retrieval-based response matching for multi-turn conversation whose related work simply concatenates the conversation utterances, ignoring the interactions among previous utterances for context modeling. In this paper, we formulate previous utterances into context using a proposed deep utterance aggregation model to form a fine-grained context representation. In detail, a self-matching attention is first introduced to route the vital information in each utterance. Then the model matches a response with each refined utterance and the final matching score is obtained after attentive turns aggregation. Experimental results show our model outperforms the state-of-the-art methods on three multi-turn conversation benchmarks, including a newly introduced e-commerce dialogue corpus.

* COLING 2018, pages 3740-3752
* Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING 2018)
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Character-level representations have been broadly adopted to alleviate the problem of effectively representing rare or complex words. However, character itself is not a natural minimal linguistic unit for representation or word embedding composing due to ignoring the linguistic coherence of consecutive characters inside word. This paper presents a general subword-augmented embedding framework for learning and composing computationally-derived subword-level representations. We survey a series of unsupervised segmentation methods for subword acquisition and different subword-augmented strategies for text understanding, showing that subword-augmented embedding significantly improves our baselines in multiple text understanding tasks on both English and Chinese languages.

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Traditional chatbots usually need a mass of human dialogue data, especially when using supervised machine learning method. Though they can easily deal with single-turn question answering, for multi-turn the performance is usually unsatisfactory. In this paper, we present Lingke, an information retrieval augmented chatbot which is able to answer questions based on given product introduction document and deal with multi-turn conversations. We will introduce a fine-grained pipeline processing to distill responses based on unstructured documents, and attentive sequential context-response matching for multi-turn conversations.

* Accepted by COLING 2018 demonstration paper
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Semantic role labeling (SRL) aims to discover the predicateargument structure of a sentence. End-to-end SRL without syntactic input has received great attention. However, most of them focus on either span-based or dependency-based semantic representation form and only show specific model optimization respectively. Meanwhile, handling these two SRL tasks uniformly was less successful. This paper presents an end-to-end model for both dependency and span SRL with a unified argument representation to deal with two different types of argument annotations in a uniform fashion. Furthermore, we jointly predict all predicates and arguments, especially including long-term ignored predicate identification subtask. Our single model achieves new state-of-the-art results on both span (CoNLL 2005, 2012) and dependency (CoNLL 2008, 2009) SRL benchmarks.

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Who did what to whom is a major focus in natural language understanding, which is right the aim of semantic role labeling (SRL). Although SRL is naturally essential to text comprehension tasks, it is surprisingly ignored in previous work. This paper thus makes the first attempt to let SRL enhance text comprehension and inference through specifying verbal arguments and their corresponding semantic roles. In terms of deep learning models, our embeddings are enhanced by semantic role labels for more fine-grained semantics. We show that the salient labels can be conveniently added to existing models and significantly improve deep learning models in challenging text comprehension tasks. Extensive experiments on benchmark machine reading comprehension and inference datasets verify that the proposed semantic learning helps our system reach new state-of-the-art.

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Chemical reaction practicality is the core task among all symbol intelligence based chemical information processing, for example, it provides indispensable clue for further automatic synthesis route inference. Considering that chemical reactions have been represented in a language form, we propose a new solution to generally judge the practicality of organic reaction without considering complex quantum physical modeling or chemistry knowledge. While tackling the practicality judgment as a machine learning task from positive and negative (chemical reaction) samples, all existing studies have to carefully handle the serious insufficiency issue on the negative samples. We propose an auto-construction method to well solve the extensively existed long-term difficulty. Experimental results show our model can effectively predict the practicality of chemical reactions, which achieves a high accuracy of 99.76\% on real large-scale chemical lab reaction practicality judgment.

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