Google Research

The Practical Challenges of Active Learning: A Case Study from Live Experimentation

ICML Workshop on Human In the Loop Learning (2019)


We tested, in a production setting, the use of active learning for selecting text documents for human annotations used to train a Thai segmentation machine learning model. In our study, two concurrent annotated samples were constructed, one through random sampling of documents from a text corpus, and the other through model-based scoring and ranking of documents from the same corpus. We observed that several of the assumptions forming the basis of offline (simulated) evaluation largely failed in the live setting. We present these challenges and propose guidelines addressing each of them which can be used for the design of live experimentation of active learning, and more generally for the application of active learning in live settings.

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