Research has shown that learning a new language is easier up to the age of 18, when it begins to rapidly drop, the ability to learn a new language, at least linguistically, is at its peak. However, learning should begin before the age of 10 if you want to be entirely fluent.
Interesting, yeah? It’s a much more rewarding feeling when one knows that learning machine language has no clause like our verbal language.
Since learning is fun, today’s post will center on a language machine model called BERT. You will understand what the language model entails, what it does and how best to harness its characteristics.
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What is BERT?
BERT, which means Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers is a pre-trained transformer-based model for natural language processing tasks. It was developed by Google researchers in 2018.
BERT is trained on a large dataset of text data to learn patterns and relationships in the language.
What makes BERT unique from others?
BERT is unique in that it is trained in a "bidirectional" manner, meaning that it considers the context of a word in both the left and right directions, rather than just the left or right context, like many other pre-trained models. This allows BERT to understand the meaning of a word in a sentence more accurately than models that only consider left or right context.
BERT can be fine-tuned on a wide range of natural language understanding tasks such as named entity recognition, question answering, and sentiment analysis by training the model on a small dataset of labeled examples for a specific task.
Where can BERT find use?
BERT is a pre-trained model for natural language processing tasks and has a set of new state-of-the-art performances wide range of potential uses in various applications ranging from:
Text classification: BERT can be fine-tuned on a small, labeled dataset to classify text into different categories, such as sentiment analysis, topic classification, and spam detection.
- Named Entity Recognition (NER): BERT can be fine-tuned to identify specific types of entities such as people, locations, and organizations in text.
- Question Answering (QA): BERT can be fine-tuned to answer questions based on a given context.
- Text Generation: BERT can be fine-tuned to generate text that is like a given input.
- Text Summarization: BERT can be fine-tuned to summarize long documents or articles
- Translation: BERT can be fine-tuned for machine translation tasks
- Chatbots: BERT can be used to improve the natural language understanding of chatbots, making them more capable of handling complex and open-ended questions.
- Search engines: BERT can be used to improve the understanding of natural language queries and provide more relevant search results.
These are just a few examples of the many potential use cases of BERT. The flexibility of the model makes it adaptable to a wide range of natural language processing tasks, and researchers continue to explore new ways to use BERT in various applications.
What are the shortcomings of BERT?
BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) is a transformer-based model that has been trained on a large corpus of text data and has achieved state-of-the-art performance on a wide range of natural language processing tasks. However, like all machine learning models, it has its limitations. Some of the shortcomings of BERT include:
- Computational cost: BERT is a large model with many parameters, which makes it computationally expensive to train and deploy.
- Long input sequences: BERT is designed to handle long input sequences, but it can struggle with very long inputs (e.g., longer than 512 tokens).
- Limited understanding of context: BERT is trained to understand the context of a sentence by looking at the words that come before and after it, but it may not always accurately capture the full context of a sentence or a document.
- Limited understanding of the world: BERT is trained on a large corpus of text data, but it has no explicit knowledge of the real world. This can lead to errors or inconsistencies when the model is applied to tasks that require an understanding of specific domains or factual knowledge.
- Language bias: BERT is trained on a large corpus of text data, but the data is not always representative of the diverse perspectives and experiences of the real world, which can lead to language bias.
- Not good for generating text: BERT is a pre-trained model for feature extraction and fine-tuning on various NLP tasks, but it is not good for generating text like GPT-2, and GPT-3.