Writing Polishment with Simile: Task, Dataset and A Neural Approach

15 Dec 2020  ·  Jiayi Zhang, Zhi Cui, Xiaoqiang Xia, Yalong Guo, Yanran Li, Chen Wei, Jianwei Cui ·

A simile is a figure of speech that directly makes a comparison, showing similarities between two different things, e.g. "Reading papers can be dull sometimes,like watching grass grow". Human writers often interpolate appropriate similes into proper locations of the plain text to vivify their writings. However, none of existing work has explored neural simile interpolation, including both locating and generation. In this paper, we propose a new task of Writing Polishment with Simile (WPS) to investigate whether machines are able to polish texts with similes as we human do. Accordingly, we design a two-staged Locate&Gen model based on transformer architecture. Our model firstly locates where the simile interpolation should happen, and then generates a location-specific simile. We also release a large-scale Chinese Simile (CS) dataset containing 5 million similes with context. The experimental results demonstrate the feasibility of WPS task and shed light on the future research directions towards better automatic text polishment.

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