Browse Prior Art Database

Getting It Straight in Machine Translation

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000111327D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Feb-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-26
Document File: 2 page(s) / 83K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Brown, PF: AUTHOR [+4]

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for reordering the words of a French sentence so as to approximate the word order of the corresponding English translation. An application of this method should, for example, transform the sentence Il me donne la maison rouge (which is French for He gives me the red house, but translates word for word as He me gives the house red) into Il donne me la rouge maison.

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Getting It Straight in Machine Translation

      Disclosed is a method for reordering the words of a French
sentence so as to approximate the word order of the corresponding
English translation.  An application of this method should, for
example, transform the sentence Il me donne la maison rouge (which is
French for He gives me the red house, but translates word for word as
He me gives the house red) into Il donne me la rouge maison.

      The alignment between a French sentence, f sub 1 , f sub 2 ,
ellipsis , f sub n, and its English translation, e sub 1 , e sub 2 ,
ellipsis , e sub m , as described in detail in [1], is a diagram
showing for each word in the English sentence those words in the
French sentence of which it is a translation.  A line in such a
diagram joining an English word to one of its corresponding French
words is called a connection.  A particular pair of sentences may be
aligned in many ways.  The most probable alignment is called the
Viterbi alignment.  Mathematically, an alignment is a mapping a from
the integers 1 through n to the integers 1 through m such that f sub
j  is connected to  e sub <a sub j>.

      In an alignment as discussed in [1], each French word is
connected to exactly one English word.  Given a French sentence, f
sub 1 , f sub 2 , ellipsis , f sub n, and an alignment a, the words
of the French sentence can be reordered so that f sub j  precedes  f
sub k  in the new ordering if and only if either 1) a sub j lt a sub
k , or 2) a sub j = a sub k  and j lt k.  For a particular alignment,
there is exactly one such reordering of the French sentence.  This
reordered sentence is called an Anglicized French.  sentence.  In
general, the Anglicized French corresponding to a particular French
sentence depends on the alignment and therefore on the English
translation of the sentence.  In the absence of an English
translation and a specific alignment, the Anglicized French is that
reordering of the French that corresponds to the Viterbi alignment of
the most probable translation.

      The method disclosed entails a preparatory phase and an
application phase.  The preparatory phase consists of the following
steps:

1.    Obtain a large collection of pairs of French and English
    sentences.

2.    Determine the parameters of model 5 as described in [2].

3.    Find the Viterbi alignment for each pair of sentences and the
    corresponding A...