Oral Session 1: Deep Learning

Moderator: Antoine Bordes

Tue 7 Dec midnight PST — 1 a.m. PST


Chat is not available.

Tue 7 Dec. 0:00 - 0:15 PST

MAUVE: Measuring the Gap Between Neural Text and Human Text using Divergence Frontiers

Krishna Pillutla · Swabha Swayamdipta · Rowan Zellers · John Thickstun · Sean Welleck · Yejin Choi · Zaid Harchaoui

As major progress is made in open-ended text generation, measuring how close machine-generated text is to human language remains a critical open problem. We introduce Mauve, a comparison measure for open-ended text generation, which directly compares the learnt distribution from a text generation model to the distribution of human-written text using divergence frontiers. Mauve scales up to modern text generation models by computing information divergences in a quantized embedding space. Through an extensive empirical study on three open-ended generation tasks, we find that Mauve identifies known properties of generated text, scales naturally with model size, and correlates with human judgments, with fewer restrictions than existing distributional evaluation metrics.

Tue 7 Dec. 0:15 - 0:20 PST


Tue 7 Dec. 0:20 - 0:35 PST

Learning to Draw: Emergent Communication through Sketching

Daniela Mihai · Jonathon Hare

Evidence that visual communication preceded written language and provided a basis for it goes back to prehistory, in forms such as cave and rock paintings depicting traces of our distant ancestors. Emergent communication research has sought to explore how agents can learn to communicate in order to collaboratively solve tasks. Existing research has focused on language, with a learned communication channel transmitting sequences of discrete tokens between the agents. In this work, we explore a visual communication channel between agents that are allowed to draw with simple strokes. Our agents are parameterised by deep neural networks, and the drawing procedure is differentiable, allowing for end-to-end training. In the framework of a referential communication game, we demonstrate that agents can not only successfully learn to communicate by drawing, but with appropriate inductive biases, can do so in a fashion that humans can interpret. We hope to encourage future research to consider visual communication as a more flexible and directly interpretable alternative of training collaborative agents.

Tue 7 Dec. 0:35 - 0:40 PST


Tue 7 Dec. 0:40 - 0:55 PST

Latent Equilibrium: A unified learning theory for arbitrarily fast computation with arbitrarily slow neurons

Paul Haider · Benjamin Ellenberger · Laura Kriener · Jakob Jordan · Walter Senn · Mihai A. Petrovici

The response time of physical computational elements is finite, and neurons are no exception. In hierarchical models of cortical networks each layer thus introduces a response lag. This inherent property of physical dynamical systems results in delayed processing of stimuli and causes a timing mismatch between network output and instructive signals, thus afflicting not only inference, but also learning. We introduce Latent Equilibrium, a new framework for inference and learning in networks of slow components which avoids these issues by harnessing the ability of biological neurons to phase-advance their output with respect to their membrane potential. This principle enables quasi-instantaneous inference independent of network depth and avoids the need for phased plasticity or computationally expensive network relaxation phases. We jointly derive disentangled neuron and synapse dynamics from a prospective energy function that depends on a network's generalized position and momentum. The resulting model can be interpreted as a biologically plausible approximation of error backpropagation in deep cortical networks with continuous-time, leaky neuronal dynamics and continuously active, local plasticity. We demonstrate successful learning of standard benchmark datasets, achieving competitive performance using both fully-connected and convolutional architectures, and show how our principle can be applied to detailed models of cortical microcircuitry. Furthermore, we study the robustness of our model to spatio-temporal substrate imperfections to demonstrate its feasibility for physical realization, be it in vivo or in silico.

Tue 7 Dec. 0:55 - 1:00 PST