Data Collection for a Production Dialogue System: A Startup Perspective


Industrial dialogue systems such as Apple Siri and Google Assistant require large scale diverse training data to enable their sophisticated conversation capabilities. Crowdsourcing is a scalable and inexpensive data collection method, but collecting high quality data efficiently requires thoughtful orchestration of crowdsourcing jobs. Prior study of data collection process has focused on tasks with limited scope and performed intrinsic data analysis, which may not be indicative of impact on trained model performance. In this paper, we present a study of crowdsourcing methods for a user intent classification task in one of our deployed dialogue systems. Our task requires classification over 47 possible user intents and contains many intent pairs with subtle differences. We consider different crowdsourcing job types and job prompts, quantitatively analyzing the quality of collected data and downstream model performance on a test set of real user queries from production logs. Our observations provide insight into how design decisions impact crowdsourced data quality, with clear recommendations for future data collection for dialogue systems.

Proceedings of the 2018 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 3 (Industry Papers)
Jonathan K. Kummerfeld
Jonathan K. Kummerfeld
Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Postdoc working on Natural Language Processing.