Loss in Translation: Learning Bilingual Word Mapping with a Retrieval Criterion

Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

By: Armand Joulin, Piotr Bojanowski, Tomas Mikolov, Hervé Jégou, Edouard Grave

Abstract

Continuous word representations learned separately on distinct languages can be aligned so that their words become comparable in a common space. Existing works typically solve a least-square regression problem to learn a rotation aligning a small bilingual lexicon, and use a retrieval criterion for inference. In this paper, we propose an unified formulation that directly optimizes a retrieval criterion in an end-to-end fashion. Our experiments on standard benchmarks show that our approach outperforms the state of the art on word translation, with the biggest improvements observed for distant language pairs such as English-Chinese.