Learning to Discriminate Noises for Incorporating External Information in Neural Machine Translation

Previous studies show that incorporating external information could improve the translation quality of Neural Machine Translation (NMT) systems. However, there are inevitably noises in the external information, severely reducing the benefit that the existing methods could receive from the incorporation. To tackle the problem, this study pays special attention to the discrimination of the noises during the incorporation. We argue that there exist two kinds of noise in this external information, i.e. global noise and local noise, which affect the translations for the whole sentence and for some specific words, respectively. Accordingly, we propose a general framework that learns to jointly discriminate both the global and local noises, so that the external information could be better leveraged. Our model is trained on the dataset derived from the original parallel corpus without any external labeled data or annotation. Experimental results in various real-world scenarios, language pairs, and neural architectures indicate that discriminating noises contributes to significant improvements in translation quality by being able to better incorporate the external information, even in very noisy conditions.

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