TechTalks from event: NAACL 2015

8C: Machine Translation

  • A Comparison of Update Strategies for Large-Scale Maximum Expected BLEU Training Authors: Joern Wuebker, Sebastian Muehr, Patrick Lehnen, Stephan Peitz, Hermann Ney
    This work presents a flexible and efficient discriminative training approach for statistical machine translation. We propose to use the RPROP algorithm for optimizing a maximum expected BLEU objective and experimentally compare it to several other updating schemes. It proves to be more efficient and effective than the previously proposed growth transformation technique and also yields better results than stochastic gradient descent and AdaGrad. We also report strong empirical results on two large scale tasks, namely BOLT Chinese->English and WMT German->English, where our final systems outperform results reported by Setiawan and Zhou (2013) and on On the WMT task, discriminative training is performed on the full training data of 4M sentence pairs, which is unsurpassed in the literature.
  • Gappy Pattern Matching on GPUs for On-Demand Extraction of Hierarchical Translation Grammars Authors: Hua He, Jimmy Lin, Adam Lopez
    Grammars for machine translation can be materialized on demand by finding source phrases in an indexed parallel corpus and extracting their translations. This approach is limited in practical applications by the computational expense of online lookup and extraction. For phrase-based models, recent work has shown that on-demand grammar extraction can be greatly accelerated by parallelization on general purpose graphics processing units (GPUs), but these algorithms do not work for hierarchical models, which require matching patterns that contain gaps. We address this limitation by presenting a novel GPU algorithm for on-demand hierarchical grammar extraction that is at least an order of magnitude faster than a comparable CPU algorithm when processing large batches of sentences. In terms of end-to-end translation, with decoding on the CPU, we increase throughput by roughly two thirds on a standard MT evaluation dataset. The GPU necessary to achieve these improvements increases the cost of a server by about a third. We believe that GPU-based extraction of hierarchical grammars is an attractive proposition, particularly for MT applications that demand high throughput.
  • Learning Translation Models from Monolingual Continuous Representations Authors: Kai Zhao, Hany Hassan, Michael Auli
    Translation models often fail to generate good translations for infrequent words or phrases. Previous work attacked this problem by inducing new translation rules from monolingual data with a semi-supervised algorithm. However, this approach does not scale very well since it is very computationally expensive to generate new translation rules for only a few thousand sentences. We propose a much faster and simpler method that directly hallucinates translation rules for infrequent phrases based on phrases with similar continuous representations for which a translation is known. To speed up the retrieval of similar phrases, we investigate approximated nearest neighbor search with redundant bit vectors which we find to be three times faster and significantly more accurate than locality sensitive hashing. Our approach of learning new translation rules improves a phrase-based baseline by up to 1.6 BLEU on Arabic-English translation, it is three-orders of magnitudes faster than existing semi-supervised methods and 0.5 BLEU more accurate.