15th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

September 14-18, 2014

Word Pair Approximation for More Efficient Decoding with High-Order Language Models

David Nolden, Ralf Schlüter, Hermann Ney

RWTH Aachen University, Germany

The search effort in LVCSR depends on the order of the language model ( LM); search hypotheses are only recombined once the LM allows for it. In this work we show how the LM dependence can be partially eliminated by exploiting the well-known word pair approximation. We enforce preemptive unigram- or bigram-like LM recombination at word boundaries. We capture the recombination in a lattice, and later expand the lattice using LM rescoring. LM rescoring unfolds the same search space which would have been encountered without the preemptive recombination, but the overall efficiency is improved, because the amount of redundant HMM expansion in different LM contexts is reduced. Additionally, we show how to expand the recombined hypotheses on-the-fly, omitting the intermediate lattice form. Our new approach allows using the full n-gram LM for decoding, but based on a compact unigram- or bigram search space. We show that our approach works better than common lattice rescoring pipelines, where a pruned lower-order LM is used to generate lattices; such pipelines suffer from the weak lower-order LM, which guides the pruning sub-optimally. Our new decoding approach improves the runtime efficiency by up to 40% at equal precision when using a large vocabulary and high-order LM.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Nolden, David / Schlüter, Ralf / Ney, Hermann (2014): "Word pair approximation for more efficient decoding with high-order language models", In INTERSPEECH-2014, 646-650.