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Neural Methods for Sentiment Analysis and Text Summarization

Thien-Hoa Le 1
1 SYNALP - Natural Language Processing : representations, inference and semantics
LORIA - NLPKD - Department of Natural Language Processing & Knowledge Discovery
Abstract : This thesis focuses on two Natural Language Processing tasks that require to extract semantic information from raw texts: Sentiment Analysis and Text Summarization. This dissertation discusses issues and seeks to improve neural models on both tasks, which have become the dominant paradigm in the past several years. Accordingly, this dissertation is composed of two parts: the first part (Neural Sentiment Analysis) deals with the computational study of people's opinions, sentiments, and the second part (Neural Text Summarization) tries to extract salient information from a complex sentence and rewrites it in a human-readable form. Neural Sentiment Analysis. Similar to computer vision, numerous deep convolutional neural networks have been adapted to sentiment analysis and text classification tasks. However, unlike the image domain, these studies are carried on different input data types and on different datasets, which makes it hard to know if a deep network is truly needed. In this thesis, we seek to find elements to address this question, i.e. whether neural networks must compute deep hierarchies of features for textual data in the same way as they do in vision. We thus propose a new adaptation of the deepest convolutional architecture (DenseNet) for text classification and study the importance of depth in convolutional models with different atom-levels (word or character) of input. We show that deep models indeed give better performances than shallow networks when the text input is represented as a sequence of characters. However, a simple shallow-and-wide network outperforms the deep DenseNet models with word inputs. Besides, to further improve sentiment classifiers and contextualize them, we propose to model them jointly with dialog acts, which are a factor of explanation and correlate with sentiments but are nevertheless often ignored. We have manually annotated both dialogues and sentiments on a Twitter-like social medium, and train a multi-task hierarchical recurrent network on joint sentiment and dialog act recognition. We show that transfer learning may be efficiently achieved between both tasks, and further analyze some specific correlations between sentiments and dialogues on social media. Neural Text Summarization. Detecting sentiments and opinions from large digital documents does not always enable users of such systems to take informed decisions, as other important semantic information is missing. People also need the main arguments and supporting reasons from the source documents to truly understand and interpret the document. To capture such information, we aim at making the neural text summarization models more explainable. We propose a model that has better explainability properties and is flexible enough to support various shallow syntactic parsing modules. More specifically, we linearize the syntactic tree into the form of overlapping text segments, which are then selected with reinforcement learning (RL) and regenerated into a compressed form. Hence, the proposed model is able to handle both extractive and abstractive summarization. Further, we observe that RL-based models are becoming increasingly ubiquitous for many text summarization tasks. We are interested in better understanding what types of information is taken into account by such models, and we propose to study this question from the syntactic perspective. We thus provide a detailed comparison of both RL-based and syntax-aware approaches and of their combination along several dimensions that relate to the perceived quality of the generated summaries such as number of repetitions, sentence length, distribution of part-of-speech tags, relevance and grammaticality. We show that when there is a resource constraint (computation and memory), it is wise to only train models with RL and without any syntactic information, as they provide nearly as good results as syntax-aware models with less parameters and faster training convergence.
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Thien-Hoa Le. Neural Methods for Sentiment Analysis and Text Summarization. Document and Text Processing. Université de Lorraine, 2020. English. ⟨NNT : 2020LORR0037⟩. ⟨tel-02929745⟩

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