Efficient Large-Scale Domain Classification with Personalized Attention

In this paper, we explore the task of mapping spoken language utterances to one of thousands of natural language understanding domains in intelligent personal digital assistants (IPDAs). This scenario is observed for many mainstream IPDAs in industry that allow third parties to develop thousands of new domains to augment built-in ones to rapidly increase domain coverage and overall IPDA capabilities. We propose a scalable neural model architecture with a shared encoder, a novel attention mechanism that incorporates personalization information and domain-specific classifiers that solves the problem efficiently. Our architecture is designed to efficiently accommodate new domains that appear in-between full model retraining cycles with a rapid bootstrapping mechanism two orders of magnitude faster than retraining. We account for practical constraints in real-time production systems, and design to minimize memory footprint and runtime latency. We demonstrate that incorporating personalization results in significantly more accurate domain classification in the setting with thousands of overlapping domains.

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