Self-Instruct is a framework that helps language models improve their ability to follow natural language instructions. It does this by using the model’s own generations to create a large collection of instructional data. With Self-Instruct, it is possible to improve the instruction-following capabilities of language models without relying on extensive manual annotation.
In recent years, there has been a growing interest in building models that can follow natural language instructions to perform a wide range of tasks. These models, known as “instruction-tuned” language models, have demonstrated the ability to generalize to new tasks. However, their performance is heavily dependent on the quality and quantity of the human-written instruction data used to train them, which can be limited in diversity and creativity. To overcome these limitations, it is important to develop alternative approaches for supervising instruction-tuned models and improving their instruction-following capabilities.
The Self-Instruct process is an iterative bootstrapping algorithm that starts with a seed set of manually-written instructions and uses them to prompt the language model to generate new instructions and corresponding input-output instances. These generations are then filtered to remove low-quality or similar ones, and the resulting data is added back to the task pool. This process can be repeated multiple times, resulting in a large collection of instructional data that can be used to fine-tune the language model to follow instructions more effectively.
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