DiPair: Fast and Accurate Distillation for Trillion-Scale Text Matching and Pair Modeling

Jiecao Chen, Liu Yang, Karthik Raman, Michael Bendersky, Jung-Jung Yeh, Yun Zhou, Marc Najork, Danyang Cai, Ehsan Emadzadeh


Abstract
Pre-trained models like BERT ((Devlin et al., 2018) have dominated NLP / IR applications such as single sentence classification, text pair classification, and question answering. However, deploying these models in real systems is highly non-trivial due to their exorbitant computational costs. A common remedy to this is knowledge distillation (Hinton et al., 2015), leading to faster inference. However – as we show here – existing works are not optimized for dealing with pairs (or tuples) of texts. Consequently, they are either not scalable or demonstrate subpar performance. In this work, we propose DiPair — a novel framework for distilling fast and accurate models on text pair tasks. Coupled with an end-to-end training strategy, DiPair is both highly scalable and offers improved quality-speed tradeoffs. Empirical studies conducted on both academic and real-world e-commerce benchmarks demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed approach with speedups of over 350x and minimal quality drop relative to the cross-attention teacher BERT model.
Anthology ID:
2020.findings-emnlp.264
Volume:
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2020
Month:
November
Year:
2020
Address:
Online
Venues:
EMNLP | Findings
SIG:
Publisher:
Association for Computational Linguistics
Note:
Pages:
2925–2937
Language:
URL:
https://www.aclweb.org/anthology/2020.findings-emnlp.264
DOI:
10.18653/v1/2020.findings-emnlp.264
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PDF:
http://aclanthology.lst.uni-saarland.de/2020.findings-emnlp.264.pdf