A White Box Analysis of ColBERT

17 Dec 2020  ·  Thibault Formal, Benjamin Piwowarski, Stéphane Clinchant ·

Transformer-based models are nowadays state-of-the-art in ad-hoc Information Retrieval, but their behavior is far from being understood. Recent work has claimed that BERT does not satisfy the classical IR axioms. However, we propose to dissect the matching process of ColBERT, through the analysis of term importance and exact/soft matching patterns. Even if the traditional axioms are not formally verified, our analysis reveals that ColBERT: (i) is able to capture a notion of term importance; (ii) relies on exact matches for important terms.

PDF Abstract


  Add Datasets introduced or used in this paper

Results from the Paper

  Submit results from this paper to get state-of-the-art GitHub badges and help the community compare results to other papers.