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TAUS has kindly requested a blog series on current topics in automatic translation. As an opening salvo, here’s a sneak preview of the forthcoming TAUS report on speech-to-speech translation (S2ST). The report, co-authored by Alex Waibel, Andrew Joscelyne, and myself, will attempt a broad view of the field’s past, present, and future. For this appetizer, though, we’ll restrict our view to a brief snapshot – a selfie, if you like – of selected technical accomplishment at the current state of the art. (The report will include interviews with several additional participants.) Google Translate mobile app: Speed: Barring network delays, speech recognition...
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For decades, speech-to-speech (S2S) translation technologies have been the dream of not only the translation veteran, but also your everyday traveler, business guru and medical expert. The Universal Translator used in Star Trek and the Babel Fish from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy are ideals and may have set the standard for many people. However, have we actually come close? And if not, do we even care? The upcoming TAUS S2S Translation Technology report will delve deeper into the past, present and future of S2S translation technology. Where did it all begin and does the progress we have made allow...
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Interpreters working in the European Parliament have urged fast-talking MEPs (Member of European Parliament) to slow down and speak in their native language. Secretary General Klaus Welle told the European Parliament’s budgetary control committee that interpreters had specifically requested this, remarking that “it drives them crazy.” He explained that during some sessions of the parliament interpreters were dealing with an oral output of 180 words per minute. Secretary Welle met with interpreters during January to try and address their grievances. During a parliamentary day, interpreters work from a booth with widely varying hours. Welle said MEPs needed to consider the difficult...
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News reports and pundit commentary from the latest Consumer Electronics Show recently held in Las Vegas suggest that we are entering a new era of “conversational” devices. This has largely been driven by the rapid improvement in speech recognition, dragooned into handling the interface problem raised by the particular form factor of smartphones – a small, typing-unfriendly screen constantly connected to the cloud. But it also includes augmented reality type services for your digital glasses and other variants of digital madness. Does this conversational moment pose a threat to - or open up opportunities for - the translation automation agenda? When technologists...
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