Dongseong Hwang

Dongseong Hwang

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    Preview abstract Knowledge distillation is an effective machine learning technique to transfer knowledge from teacher to student model. It is also a crucial component for learning from unlabeled data, for example, in Noisy Student Training. In this paper, we focus on knowledge distillation for the RNN-T model, which is widely used in state-of-the-art (SoTA) ASR. Specifically, we compared using soft and hard distillation targets to train large-scale RNN-T models on the LibriSpeech public dataset (60k hours) and our in-house data (600k hours). We found that hard targets are more effective when distilling from a larger teacher model to a smaller streaming student model. On the other hand, soft target distillation works better for when the teacher and student models have a similar network architecture. For a large model with 600M parameters, we can achieve a new SoTA word error rate (WER) on LibriSpeech (8% relative improvement on dev-other) using Noisy Student Training with soft targets. View details
    Preview abstract Speech data from different domains has distinct acoustic and linguistic characteristics. It is common to train a single multidomain model such as a Conformer transducer for speech recognition on a mixture of data from all domains. However, changing data in one domain or adding a new domain would require the multidomain model to be retrained. To this end, we propose a framework called modular domain adaptation (MDA) that enables a single model to process multidomain data while keeping all parameters domain-specific, i.e., each parameter is only trained by data from one domain. On a streaming Conformer transducer trained only on video caption data, experimental results show that an MDA-based model can reach similar performance as the multidomain model on other domains such as voice search and dictation by adding per-domain adapters and per-domain feed-forward networks in the Conformer encoder. View details
    Preview abstract In streaming settings, speech recognition models have to map sub-sequences of speech to text before the full audio stream becomes available. However, since alignment information between speech and text is rarely available during training, models need to learn it in a completely self-supervised way. In practice, the exponential number of possible alignments makes this extremely challenging, with models often learning peaky or sub-optimal alignments. Prima facie, the exponential nature of the alignment space makes it difficult to even quantify the uncertainty of a model's alignment distribution. Fortunately, it has been known for decades that the entropy of a probabilistic finite state transducer can be computed in time linear to the size of the transducer via a dynamic programming reduction based on semirings. In this work, we revisit the entropy semiring for neural speech recognition models, and show how alignment entropy can be used to supervise models through regularization or distillation. We also contribute an open-source implementation of CTC and RNN-T in the semiring framework that includes numerically stable and highly parallel variants of the entropy semiring. Empirically, we observe that the addition of alignment distillation improves the accuracy and latency of an already well-optimized teacher-student distillation model, achieving state-of-the-art performance on the Librispeech dataset in the streaming scenario. View details
    Preview abstract Human labeling is expensive. Labeling is the most painful step for ML production. It’s widely believed that data is the new gold and big tech companies have an unfair advantage. Is it true that unlimited data unlimits model performance? In this study, we show 1k hrs human labeled data is enough for the best ASR model. The model trained with 1k hrs human labels and 26k hrs pseudo labels has better WERs than the model with 27k hrs human labels. Pseudo label training improves WERs of the production model by a significant margin; 5.9 to 5.1 on voice search. It means pseudo label quality is better than human label. To have quality pseudo labels, we utilized recent self/semi-supervised learning for a large ASR model. View details
    Large-scale ASR Domain Adaptation by Self- and Semi-supervised Learning
    David Qiu
    Françoise Beaufays
    Nikhil Siddhartha
    Yanzhang (Ryan) He
    Zhouyuan Huo
    ICASSP(2022) (to appear)
    Preview abstract Self- and Semi-supervised learning methods have been actively investigated to reduce labeled training data or enhance the model performance. However, the approach mostly focus on in-domain performance for public datasets. In this study, we utilize the combination of self- and semi-supervised learning methods to solve unseen domain adaptation problem in a large-scale production setting for online ASR model. This approach demonstrates that using the source domain data with a small fraction of the target domain data (3%) can recover the performance gap compared to a full data baseline: relative 13.5% WER improvement for target domain data. View details
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