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WMT English-German link
Machine translation between English and German.
Method (expand all | collapse all) BLEU (newstest2014) BLEU (newstest2015) BLEU (newstest2016)
Rico Sennrich, Barry Haddow, Alexandra Birch
We participated in the WMT 2016 shared news translation task by building neural translation systems for four language pairs, each trained in both directions: English<->Czech, English<->German, English<->Romanian and English<->Russian. Our systems are based on an attentional encoder-decoder, using BPE subword segmentation for open-vocabulary translation with a fixed vocabulary. We experimented with using automatic back-translations of the monolingual News corpus as additional training data, pervasive dropout, and target-bidirectional models. All reported methods give substantial improvements, and we see improvements of 4.3--11.2 BLEU over our baseline systems. In the human evaluation, our systems were the (tied) best constrained system for 7 out of 8 translation directions in which we participated.
Jonas Gehring, Michael Auli, David Grangier, Yann N. Dauphin
The prevalent approach to neural machine translation relies on bi-directional LSTMs to encode the source sentence. In this paper we present a faster and simpler architecture based on a succession of convolutional layers. This allows to encode the entire source sentence simultaneously compared to recurrent networks for which computation is constrained by temporal dependencies. On WMT'16 English-Romanian translation we achieve competitive accuracy to the state-of-the-art and we outperform several recently published results on the WMT'15 English-German task. Our models obtain almost the same accuracy as a very deep LSTM setup on WMT'14 English-French translation. Our convolutional encoder speeds up CPU decoding by more than two times at the same or higher accuracy as a strong bi-directional LSTM baseline.
Junyoung Chung, Kyunghyun Cho, Yoshua Bengio
The existing machine translation systems, whether phrase-based or neural, have relied almost exclusively on word-level modelling with explicit segmentation. In this paper, we ask a fundamental question: can neural machine translation generate a character sequence without any explicit segmentation? To answer this question, we evaluate an attention-based encoder-decoder with a subword-level encoder and a character-level decoder on four language pairs--En-Cs, En-De, En-Ru and En-Fi-- using the parallel corpora from WMT'15. Our experiments show that the models with a character-level decoder outperform the ones with a subword-level decoder on all of the four language pairs. Furthermore, the ensembles of neural models with a character-level decoder outperform the state-of-the-art non-neural machine translation systems on En-Cs, En-De and En-Fi and perform comparably on En-Ru.
Rico Sennrich, Barry Haddow, Alexandra Birch
Neural machine translation (NMT) models typically operate with a fixed vocabulary, but translation is an open-vocabulary problem. Previous work addresses the translation of out-of-vocabulary words by backing off to a dictionary. In this paper, we introduce a simpler and more effective approach, making the NMT model capable of open-vocabulary translation by encoding rare and unknown words as sequences of subword units. This is based on the intuition that various word classes are translatable via smaller units than words, for instance names (via character copying or transliteration), compounds (via compositional translation), and cognates and loanwords (via phonological and morphological transformations). We discuss the suitability of different word segmentation techniques, including simple character n-gram models and a segmentation based on the byte pair encoding compression algorithm, and empirically show that subword models improve over a back-off dictionary baseline for the WMT 15 translation tasks English-German and English-Russian by 1.1 and 1.3 BLEU, respectively.
Ashish Vaswani, Noam Shazeer, Niki Parmar, Jakob Uszkoreit, Llion Jones, Aidan N. Gomez, Lukasz Kaiser, Illia Polosukhin
The dominant sequence transduction models are based on complex recurrent or convolutional neural networks in an encoder-decoder configuration. The best performing models also connect the encoder and decoder through an attention mechanism. We propose a new simple network architecture, the Transformer, based solely on attention mechanisms, dispensing with recurrence and convolutions entirely. Experiments on two machine translation tasks show these models to be superior in quality while being more parallelizable and requiring significantly less time to train. Our model achieves 28.4 BLEU on the WMT 2014 English-to-German translation task, improving over the existing best results, including ensembles by over 2 BLEU. On the WMT 2014 English-to-French translation task, our model establishes a new single-model state-of-the-art BLEU score of 41.8 after training for 3.5 days on eight GPUs, a small fraction of the training costs of the best models from the literature. We show that the Transformer generalizes well to other tasks by applying it successfully to English constituency parsing both with large and limited training data.