Team, Visitors, External Collaborators
Overall Objectives
Research Program
Application Domains
New Software and Platforms
New Results
Bilateral Contracts and Grants with Industry
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Section: New Results

Modelling of language variability via diachronic embeddings and extra-linguistic contextual features

Participants : Djamé Seddah, Ganesh Jawahar, Éric Villemonte de La Clergerie, Benoît Sagot.

As part of the ANR SoSweet and the PHC Maimonide projects (in collaboration with Bar Ilan University for the latter), ALMAnaCH has invested a lot of efforts in 2018 into studying language variability (i.e. how the language evolve over time and how this evolution is tied to socio-demographic and dynamic network variables). Taking advantages of the SoSweet corpus (220 millions tweet) and of the Bar Ilan Hebrew Tweets (180M tweets) both collected over the last 5 years, we have been addressing the problem of studying semantic changes. We devised a novel attentional model, based on Bernouilli word embeddings, that are conditioned on contextual extra-linguistic (social) features such as network, spatial and socio-economic variables, which are associated with Twitter users, as well as topic-based features. We posit that these social features provide an inductive bias that is susceptible to helping our model to overcome the narrow time-span regime problem. Our extensive experiments reveal that, as a result of being less biased towards frequency cues, our proposed model was able to capture subtle semantic shifts and therefore benefits from the inclusion of a reduced set of contextual features. Our model thus fit the data better than current state-of-the-art dynamic word embedding models and therefore is a promising tool to study diachronic semantic changes over small time periods. A paper on this work is currently under review.