How Your Feedback Transforms LMs Like ChatGPT: Improving Language Models


6th Aug'23
How Your Feedback Transforms LMs Like ChatGPT: Improving Language Models | OpenGrowth

The advent of language models like ChatGPT has revolutionized our communication with technology. These advanced models enable us to engage in more natural conversations, seek advice, and obtain answers to our queries. However, the true impact of these language models goes beyond mere communication assistance. Many users might not be aware that they also contribute to the growth and knowledge development of these AI systems through their input.

In this blog, we delve into the fascinating interaction between language models and users, with a specific focus on how user feedback plays a crucial role in influencing and enhancing tools like ChatGPT. Join us as we explore the symbiotic relationship between humans and AI, uncovering the ways in which these interactions shape the future of language models and their utility in our lives.


What Does a Language Model Actually Mean

As the name implies, a language model is an artificial intelligence (AI) program designed to mimic a human's ability to comprehend and produce natural language. The algorithm is trained on a sizable volume of written content obtained from many sources, including books, journals, and websites, to accomplish this purpose. The algorithm receives the experience it needs to effectively learn and understand natural language as a result of this thorough training.

Training involves giving the algorithm a series of initial words and asking it to guess the following word in a sentence. The algorithm learns patterns and correlations between words by completing this task frequently. The algorithm's ability to grasp the language and produce text is enhanced through this process. Feedback-driven advancements in language models, and user contributions shape LMs like ChatGPT. With this training, the algorithm can converse, respond to queries, and enhance chatbots with user input. It can also impact user feedback on language generation models.


Improving Language Models


Challenges Surrounding Language Models

Language models have significant disadvantages, despite their many benefits. These models can provide inaccurate or contradictory results because they are trained on enormous volumes of text data that may contain both accurate and incorrect information.

Additionally, they are susceptible to data biases, providing skewed results. They may occasionally produce false information that isn't supported by facts. When the model conflicts with itself in a particular situation, contradictory claims could result. 

Human feedback to enhance model performance is one popular strategy for overcoming these challenges. Models can improve their performance over time as they learn from their mistakes and receive feedback. Feedback improves models' language comprehension. As a result, the models may produce more accurate and reliable responses.

For language models to gain from user feedback, it is essential to comprehend reinforcement learning as a concept and how it operates.


Reinforcement Learning: What Is It

A sophisticated AI technology called reinforcement learning (RL) allows a computer system to learn by making mistakes. RL enables the system to experiment, receive feedback in the form of incentives or punishments, and gradually develop its decision-making skills. It is inspired by how humans and animals learn from their environment.

The interaction between an agent (such as a robot or piece of software) and its environment is the central concept of real-time learning. The agent performs acts, is rewarded or punished according to the results, and discovers whether these activities are advantageous or should be avoided.

It learns tactics that optimize total cumulative rewards over time.

For example, imagine teaching RoboDog, your pet robot, to fetch a ball. RoboDog initially doesn't know what to do despite having a camera, sensors, and wheels. It moves haphazardly and occasionally strikes the ball after much trial and error. When RoboDog succeeds accidentally, you give it cookies.  RoboDog gradually learns that striking the ball produces favorable results. It discovers via investigation that approaching and picking up the ball are the activities that produce the most goodies. By engaging in these fun activities, RoboDog hones its technique and fetches the ball effectively, even around obstacles. Its learning process is reinforced by rewards and based on trial and error.


Improving Language Models


Different Reinforcement Learning Approaches

Reinforcement learning methods are value-based and policy-based. Here are different reinforcement learning approaches:

1. A value-based approach

This is concerned with determining the worth of moves in a game or other actions or states depending on rewards. In the RoboDog example, it discovers which behaviors are more valuable and lead to bigger rewards (treats), such as approaching the ball or picking it up.

The technique learns to prioritize actions that produce better results by estimating these values.


2. A method-based approach

In order to identify the optimum strategy for RoboDog without explicitly knowing the value of each move, it focuses on learning the best actions without estimating values.


3. Algorithm without models

Similar to how RoboDog randomly tries out various behaviors and is rewarded with goodies when it inadvertently hits the ball, it directly learns from experience through trial and error. By doing so, it discovers which behaviors earn it the most treats and gradually improves at fetching.

Q-learning is the model-free algorithm most frequently employed. By giving different action values, the algorithm calculates the optimum course of action. It begins with random values and changes them in response to rewards.


4. Algorithms based on models

It develops an internal model to forecast outcomes under various circumstances. RoboDog appears to have developed a strategy using its innate knowledge of its surroundings.

The algorithm makes judgments based on predictions about certain activities.


How Can a Language Model Improve Based on User Input

Reinforcement learning is a technique used by language models to take advantage of user feedback and enhance their performance when faced with obstacles. This includes biased, manufactured, conflicting, and inaccurate responses. Reward-based learning functions as a feedback loop, as previously mentioned. Let’s understand the transformative power of feedback on language models.

The language model responds to user input by generating new sentences. The model is then informed by user feedback regarding the quality of those responses, whether or not they are satisfactory. For the model's learning, this feedback functions as a reward signal. The model incorporates this feedback and modifies its internal parameters to enhance response creation. To maximize user feedback benefits, it updates its parameters using policy gradients or Q-learning.

Negative feedback aids in model recognition and correction of bias, fabrication, contradiction, and wrong responses. To lessen the likelihood of repeating those mistakes in the future, the model modifies its underlying mechanisms, such as the connections and weights in its neural network. The model continually improves at comprehending English through this ongoing process of getting input, changing parameters, and producing better responses. This ensures that the results are accurate and reliable.


Improving Language Models


In conclusion, reinforcement learning plays a crucial role in enabling language models like ChatGPT to benefit from user feedback. Through this iterative process, these models can learn from their mistakes and continually improve over time by receiving valuable feedback on their responses. Addressing issues such as bias, contrived answers, conflicting information, and inaccuracies becomes possible through this ongoing feedback and correction loop. As a result, we witness the development of language models that are not only more accurate but also increasingly dependable, providing users with reliable and trustworthy information.

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