Paper: Associative Texture Is Lost In Translation

ACL ID W13-3304
Title Associative Texture Is Lost In Translation
Venue Discourse in Machine Translation
Year 2013

We present a suggestive finding regarding the loss of associative texture in the pro- cess of machine translation, using com- parisons between (a) original and back- translated texts, (b) reference and system translations, and (c) better and worse MT systems. We represent the amount of as- sociation in a text using word association profile ? a distribution of pointwise mu- tual information between all pairs of con- tent word types in a text. We use the av- erage of the distribution, which we term lexical tightness, as a single measure of the amount of association in a text. We show that the lexical tightness of human- composed texts is higher than that of the machine translated materials; human ref- erences are tighter than machine trans- lations, and better MT systems produce lexically ti...