Deep Source-Channel Coding for Sentence Semantic Transmission With HARQ

Recently, semantic communication has been brought to the forefront because deep learning (DL)-based methods, such as Transformer, have achieved great success in semantic extraction. Although semantic communication has been successfully applied in sentence transmission to reduce semantic errors, the existing architecture is usually fixed in terms of codeword length and inefficient and inflexible for varying sentence lengths. In this study, we exploit hybrid automatic repeat request (HARQ) to reduce the semantic transmission error further. We combine semantic coding (SC) with Reed-Solomon (RS) channel coding and HARQ (called SC-RS-HARQ). SC-RS-HARQ exploits the superiority of SC and the reliability of conventional methods successfully. Although SC-RS-HARQ can be easily applied in existing HARQ systems, we also develop an end-to-end architecture called SCHARQ to pursue enhanced performance. Numerical results demonstrate that SCHARQ significantly reduces the required number of bits for semantic sentence transmission and the sentence error rate. We also attempt to replace error detection from cyclic redundancy check to a similarity detection network called Sim32 to allow the receiver to reserve wrong sentences with similar semantic information and conserve transmission resources.
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