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Yoruba being brought to text-to-speech app

Source: okayafrica
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Kola Tubosun, curator of, is heading up a Yoruba speech-to-text initiative. Their immediate goal is to create a Siri-like application that will service millions of Yoruba-speaking people in Nigeria and elsewhere but, ultimately, their creation will help ensure the language’s longevity. Besides, a Yoruba Siri—maybe we’d call her Simi instead— is bound to have a lot of personality.

From the interview which appeared on

For those who don’t know much about speech synthesis, can you elaborate on it some more and tell us how it’ll be utilized for the Yoruba text-to-speech application?

Speech synthesis is the process of creating human speech using software and audio segments. It’s called text-to-speech because the end product needs written text to put into action. Like those bibles that read the words to you, or like those GPS systems that talk, or even these Word applications that can read to you what you have typed, the system picks out already written text and converts it to synthetic audio. It is created, usually, by a process of training the computer to string along segments of audio into comprehensible speech. Watch this video to see it in action.

What we’re trying to create for Yoruba is similar, and the uses of the application are many. For instance, most artificial intelligence softwares use spoken language as means of activating them. Siri, on the iPhone, for instance, can be spoken to and “she” speaks back. That voice is a manufactured voice. But because it can respond to commands and take commands, it is useful in many other ways. Blind people, for instance, will be able to operate their phones if they can just talk to it and tell it what they want. You can use it at ATMs to help people who don’t speak English, etc.

Why is it so important that we have this software in Yoruba in particular?

Well, Yoruba has over 30 million speakers. That is already a huge population that can benefit from this kind of innovation. Many of those 30 million do not speak English at all, which means that they are shut out of a number of things involving technology. If a market woman can use an ATM in her local language, I think that empowers her. If she can speak to her phone in Yoruba and it does what she wants, that’s a leap forward.

But more importantly, African languages have been left out, for too long in global conversations in technology and that has always bothered me. Siri exists in Danish, Finnish, and Norwegian, three languages which, combined and multiplied by two, still aren’t as widely spoken as Yoruba, yet there is Siri in those languages. Why? Because we don’t care?

So, I’m working on Yoruba because that’s the language I speak and on which I have competence as a linguist to create anything. My overarching aim, however, is to show that more can be done for any African language, and more should be done. One of the ways to keep a language from being endangered is not only to speak it to our children, but also to have them capable of adapting to changing times, in this case with technology.

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Stepes introduces on-demand mobile translation review and machine translation post editing

Source: Enhanced Online News
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Stepes has announced new, on-demand translation review for mobile devices so businesses can efficiently review, post-edit, and store translated content on the cloud for access anywhere.

“Mobile translation review delivers a superior user experience so language and subject matter experts can effectively and conveniently perform linguistic validation and post-editing for translated content.”

The efficient review of translated content for linguistic quality and technical accuracy is a major bottleneck in the translation and localization process. Stepes simplifies translation review, allowing in-country reviewers (ICR) and subject matter experts to validate translated content anywhere, anytime from mobile devices or computers.

Linguistic quality assurance (LQA) is an integral step of the translation process. Many enterprise customers rely on their in-country staff in sales and marketing to review and validate translated content from localization service providers (LSPs.) However, complex file formats and demanding turnaround times often lead to poor quality or missed project deadlines.

“Stepes simplifies translation review, providing an intuitive, chat-based interface so bilingual sentences can be checked and edited for mistranslations, terminology accuracy, and consistency anywhere, anytime,” commented Carl Yao, Stepes’ visionary. “Mobile translation review delivers a superior user experience so language and subject matter experts can effectively and conveniently perform linguistic validation and post-editing for translated content,” continued Yao.

BabelNet releases live (beta) edition

Source: TermCoord
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

BabelNet, one of the largest operating multilingual encyclopedic dictionaries has recently released its new live (beta) edition.

The new BabelNet live version includes, among other things:

  • An increase in the total number of languages, from 271 to 284. New languages include: Adyghe, Azerbaijani, Goan Konkani, Livvinkarjala, Maithili, Northern Luri, Serbo-Croatian, South Patois, Tarantino, Tulu
  • Cantonese, Min Nan and Classical Chinese are now managed, displayed and searchable separately from standard Chinese
  • Chinese text is shown in either traditional or simplified characters, depending on which is used in user searches
  • Increased number of relations from 380M to around 1.8 billion
  • Increased number of images from to 10.8M to 12.1M
  • Increased number of synsets from 13.8M to 15.2M
  • Increased number of senses from 745M to 932M
  • Better management and visualization of has-part, part-of, has-kind, has-instance and is-a relations
  • Update of all of the resources, including:
    • All of the Open Multilingual Wordnets at their latest release
    • Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Wikidata and OmegaWiki
  • Integration of new open wordnets for GaelicChinese, Portuguese and KoreanBabelNet graph

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United Language Group releases new global Translation Management System, Octave

Source: Slator
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Today, United Language Group (ULG) released its proprietary Translation Management System (TMS), Octave. Facilitating collaboration across translation teams while consolidating tasks and streamlining project communication, Octave integrates Machine Translation (MT), API connector technologies, and CAT tool capabilities.  Octave represents a significant upgrade to ULG’s platform base technology, allowing for exponentially more robust features in subsequent releases.

Octave incorporates translation management features for clients, vendors and project managers, allowing for complete, end-to-end transparency throughout the lifecycle of a language project. Through Octave, clients can submit language projects, track status updates, view project reporting data, and manage terminology. Integrated, add-on applications such as OctaveMT provide the flexibility, security, and scalability for global project submitters in any industry. Octave uses a secure, password-protected environment to keep data confidential and safe.

“Octave is ULG’s solution to many of the workflow efficiency and process transparency concerns with language translation,” said ULG’s President, Kristen Giovanis. “This launch is a major step forward for the scalability of our business and the effectiveness of our services. Octave underscores our commitment to providing language technology that meets the needs of our clients in all industries and global regions.”

Octave features the integration of client-specific process workflows as well as multilingual terminology and supply chain management capabilities. Octave allows clients to submit documents for translation, approve estimates, and track the status of current language projects. Through the Octave client portal, users are provided with task notifications as well as in-depth reporting features, including purchase order history, number of words translated and terminology management savings.

Capacity management technologies and change order capabilities transform any localization undertaking into a customizable and transparent process for clients. Personalized and automated client estimation and invoicing in Octave creates efficiency and ease of use for end users.

Octave also offers online reviewer capabilities, resource management and file management features that assist global project submitters with localization projects of any scope and scale.

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Memsource now supports Google Translate Premium Edition

Source: Memsource
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor
Memsource now supports Google Translate Premium Edition.

This is a new neural machine translation concept introduced by Google, which is still in beta for end users.

This is what Google says about the current status of this product:

Access to the Google Cloud Translation API Premium Edition is available to customers on a case-by-case basis only. This is a Beta feature of the Google Cloud Translation API. This feature might be altered or changed in the future, and is not subject to any SLA or deprecation policy. This feature is not intended for real-time usage in critical applications.

Here is the sign-up form for those interested in using this.

Protemos integrates with SmartCAT

Source: Protemos
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Protemos, the translation management system, has released its version 1.18, which features an integration with SmartCAT.

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Google Translate with Word Lens allows you to point and translate from Japanese with your phone

Source: Google
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

The Google Translate app already lets you snap a photo of Japanese text and get a translation for it in English. But it’s a whole lot more convenient if you can just point your camera and instantly translate text on the go. With Word Lens, you just need to fire up the Translate app, point your camera at the Japanese text, and the English translations will appear overlaid on your screen—even if you don’t have an Internet or data connection.


Korean becomes Microsoft Translator’s 11th neural network translation language

Source: Microsoft
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Last year Microsoft announced the release of its Neural Network based translation system for 10 languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. Today, Korean is being added to the list.


At a high level, Neural Network translation works in two stages:

  1. The first stage models the word that needs to be translated based on the context of this word (and its possible translations) within the full sentence, whether the sentence is 5 words or 20 words long.
  2. The second stage then translates this word model (not the word itself but the model the neural network has built), within the context of the sentence, into the other language.

Neural Network translation uses models of word translations based on what it knows from both languages about a word and the sentence context to find the most appropriate word as well as the most suitable position for this translated word in the sentence.

One way to think about neural network-based translation is to think of a fluent English and French speaker that would read the word “dog” in a sentence: “The dog is happy”. This would create in his or her brain the image of a dog. This image would be associated with “le chien” in French. The Neural Network would intrinsically know that the word “chien” is masculine in French (“le” not “la”). But, if the sentence were to be “the dog just gave birth to six puppies”, it would picture the same dog with puppies nursing and then automatically use “la chienne” (female form of “le chien”) when translating the sentence.

Here’s an example of the benefits of this new technology used in the following sentence: (one of the randomly proposed on our try and compare site:

M277dw에 종이 문서를 올려놓고, 스마트폰으로 스캔 명령을 내린 뒤 해당 파일을 스마트폰에 즉시 저장할 수 있다.

Traditional Statistical Machine Translation would offer this translation:

“M277dw, point to the document, the paper off the file scan command Smartphone smartphones can store immediately.”

Neural Network translation, in comparison, generates this clear and fluent sentence:

“You can place a paper document on M277DW, and then save the file to your smartphone immediately after the scan command.”


AppTek announces updated Talk2Me® bi-directional speech-to-speech translation apps

Source: AppTek
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Applications Technology (AppTek) announced the release of the latest version of its Talk2Me applications. Leveraging AppTek’s proprietary Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) technology, Talk2Me allows for instant bi-directional speech-to-speech translation in 14 languages. Apps for English and Spanish as well as English and Arabic are currently available for free on the App Store.

The updated version uses AppTek’s latest real-time streaming API infrastructure for faster and more accurate translations. “Advances in our deep neural networks modeling and API infrastructures enable real-time conversation between speakers of different languages,” commented Adam Sutherland, CEO of AppTek. “We will be expanding beyond Spanish and Arabic soon.”

Talk2Me, itunes (Spanish) >>

Talk2ME, itunes (Arabic) >>

Talk2Me, Google Play (Spanish) >>

Smartling releases plug-in that integrates IBM Watson Language Translator

Source: KMWorld
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Smartling, a translation technology and service provider, has released a new integration that enables global brands to use Smartling products and services with the IBM Watson Language Translator machine translation service.

The new Smartling plug-in helps organizations gain more flexibility and control of the translation supply chain, as well as access to machine translation technology that can help them enter new international markets.

The combination of Smartling’s translation software, management services, and platform architecture and the Watson Language Translator represents a new frontier in content localization, according to Matt DeLoca, vice president of Channels and Alliances for Smartling. Smartling’s software automates the translation process, helping to increase speed-to-market, while now also providing businesses with the flexibility to take advantage of Watson Language Translator. With Smartling, customers have the flexibility to use a variety of translation options, including the Smartling professional translators, their own preferred translation agencies, or an advanced machine translation engine such as Watson Language Translator, DeLoca explained.

The new integration by Smartling connects customers with Watson Language Translator and makes it possible for them to use the cognitive, machine learning tool for existing and new translation needs.

For more information, go to

IBM reaches new record in speech recognition

Source: IBM
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Last year, IBM announced a major milestone in conversational speech recognition: a system that achieved a 6.9 percent word error rate. Since then, they have continued to push the boundaries of speech recognition, and have now reached a new industry record of 5.5 percent.

This was measured on a very difficult speech recognition task: recorded conversations between humans discussing day-to-day topics like “buying a car.” This recorded corpus, known as the “SWITCHBOARD” corpus, has been used for over two decades to benchmark speech recognition systems.

To reach this 5.5 percent breakthrough, IBM researchers focused on extending the application of deep learning technologies. They combined LSTM (Long Short Term Memory) and WaveNet language models with three strong acoustic models. Within the acoustic models used, the first two were six-layer bidirectional LSTMs. One of these has multiple feature inputs, while the other is trained with speaker-adversarial multi-task learning. The unique thing about the last model is that it not only learns from positive examples but also takes advantage of negative examples – so it gets smarter as it goes and performs better where similar speech patterns are repeated.

Reaching human parity – meaning an error rate on par with that of two humans speaking – has long been the ultimate industry goal. Others in the industry are chasing this milestone alongside IBM, and some have recently claimed reaching 5.9 percent as equivalent to human parity. However, as part of the process in reaching the milestone of 5.5 percent, it was determined that human parity is actually lower than what anyone has yet achieved — 5.1 percent.


Stepes app to support document translation from cloud drives

Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Stepes has announced that it recently launched version 5.0 of its mobile translation app used by professional human translators to support on-demand translation of documents stored on cloud drives such Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, and Box.

“The ability to translate documents directly from cloud drives is a natural progression of Stepes’ mobile-centric human translation technology,” commented Carl Yao, Stepes founder. “This new release allows content writers and localization managers to easily request document translation services anywhere and anytime, all from their smartphone.”

By enabling direct support for cloud technology, Stepes is continuing to improve the process of tanslation for businesses and linguists alike. Stepes is the world’s first mobile translation ecosystem powered by professional human translators from around the world. It enables businesses to streamline translation and localization by instantly notifying linguists of new project requests. Stepes technology allows linguists to translate anywhere, anytime from their mobile devices, or desktop computers.


Lionbridge onDemand Grew 68% in 2016

Source: Lionbridge
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Lionbridge Technologies, Inc., announced 2016 results for Lionbridge onDemand, its Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) solution that is fundamentally changing the way translation services are provided.  Lionbridge onDemand combines software and services to enable users in all enterprise departments to easily submit and receive translation projects online, and seamlessly access translation within their content management systems and marketing applications.

Lionbridge onDemand’s revenue grew 68% year-on-year in 2016 and has more than 5,600 users.  These users reported high customer satisfaction with onDemand which boasts a total Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 72.  The platform’s highly-automated, intelligent delivery model drives significant benefits including:

  • 99.8% on-time delivery rate
  • 99.4% revision-free project rate
  • 99% of users satisfied or very satisfied (85%) with their customer care

This performance reflects the uniqueness of the solution and the maturity of the BPaaS production model.

About Lionbridge onDemand

Lionbridge onDemand is a comprehensive Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) solution that combines global-scale software with the industry’s most trusted translation services.  Lionbridge onDemand supports dozens of file types and provides seamless integration with content management systems and marketing platforms.  As a full-featured solution, onDemand provides users in all enterprise departments to access translation, receive automated quotes and delivery commitments, user review workflow, asset management and invoicing.

To learn more, visit

SDL announces 2016 earnings

Source: SDL
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

SDL released its preliminary financial results (for the year ended 31 December 2016) to the analyst and financial community on 7th March 2017.

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Version 13 of Translator’s Tool Box released

Source: International Writers' Group, LLC
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

International Writers’ Group, LLC, has released version 13 of The Translator’s Tool Box: A Computer Primer for Translators by Jost Zetzsche. The latest version has more than 470 pages, with all new and updated information, links and images, and is published simultaneously in two different formats: PDF and an HTML5 help system.

Until March 13th, the new 13th edition is available for 31 USD.

See more >>

Google adding neural machine translation to more languages

Source: Google
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Last November, people from Brazil to Turkey to Japan discovered that Google Translate for their language was suddenly more accurate and easier to understand. That’s because we introduced neural machine translation—using deep neural networks to translate entire sentences, rather than just phrases—for eight languages overall. Over the next couple of weeks, these improvements are coming to Google Translate in many more languages, starting right now with Hindi, Russian and Vietnamese.

You’ll get these new translations automatically in most places Google Translate is available: in the iOS and Android apps, at, and through Google Search and the Google app. We’ll be introducing neural machine translation to even more languages over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for smoother, more fluent translations.

Image courtesy of Google


Enhancements to Lingotek’s Translation Management System add new vendor management capabilities

Source: FinancialContent
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

LEHI, UT–(Marketwired – March 01, 2017) - Lingotek | The Translation Network today announced major enhancements to its Vendor Management application (app) on its industry-leading translation management system (TMS). The new Vendor Management app gives enterprise localization managers, vendor managers, and project managers revolutionary new tools for managing multiple language services providers (LSPs) and projects. Automating vendor management provides critical operational efficiency to enable more scalable globalization strategies and a cost-efficient localization network that optimizes budgets and reduces translation spending.

These enhancements to the Vendor Management app automate the entire process for managing vendors: vendor selection, tracking costs and spending, vendor performance and quality, and collecting valuable business intelligence to evaluate project delivery and efficiency. With this data, organizations are able to easily and repeatedly select vendors who provide the highest translation quality and consistently deliver jobs on time.

“These new vendor management app enhancements show that Lingotek continues to spearhead innovation in the translation industry,” said Rob Vandenberg, President and CEO of Lingotek. “No other translation technology provider makes vendor management as seamless and easy as Lingotek does.”

The Vendor Management app simplifies and consolidates the process for requesting quotes, setting rates and pricing, choosing vendors, managing deadlines, tracking spending, and measuring translator quality and performance. An available dashboard displays easily in one place all of the information needed for tracking and evaluating information on vendors who are providing the highest quality translation and what their on-time delivery percentage are. This gives project managers insights to better manage workloads and resources for maximum throughput. Project managers can also use Lingotek’s Vendor Management app to closely track translation spending and easily identify projects that are exceeding their estimated cost or are at risk for timely delivery. The app also tracks the leveraging of translation memories (TM) to gauge the efficient reuse of linguistic assets across the enterprise.

The Vendor Management app is the latest in a series of recent app releases that automate and integrate translation in Lingotek’s cloud-based TMS.

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Memsource Cloud adds home page analytics dashboards to track localization

Source: Memsource
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

A new set of dashboards featuring localization analytics for jobs, costs, savings, and more is now available on the home page in Memsource Cloud.

The new home page analytics dashboards are available for users of Team, Ultimate, Biz Start, Biz Team, and Unlimited editions. They allow users to have an overview of their jobs and processes and to receive in-depth analysis of over 400 localization statistics as they log into their Cloud account.

On the homepage, users can add and arrange the dashboards according to their preference. When users select “Add Dashboard” at the top of the page, they are presented with eight dashboard options: Providers, Jobs, Issues, Costs, Savings, Leverage, Machine Translation, and Automation Widget.


Lilt Launches University Program

Source: Slator
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Palo Alto, CA. February 28th, 2017

Machine Translation (MT) technology has advanced rapidly in the last year, setting new quality benchmarks that open the way for wider adoption in the coming years. Consequently, machine translation should be a fundamental component of a translation studies curriculum. To bridge the gap between traditional curricula and technology advances in the language industry, Lilt, an interactive, adaptive machine translation platform, has announced the launch of a University Program, which allows academic institutions to get free access to Lilt for their students and professors.

The University Program enables professors to create a hands-on learning experience for their students on one of the industry’s newest and most innovative technologies: Adaptive Machine Translation, which learns in real-time from human feedback and/or existing translation memory data. Adaptation allows the system to progressively provide better suggestions to human translators, and higher quality for fully automatic translation. Students working with Lilt will be learning the technology that they will most likely go on to use in their future careers.

As a platform that was born in an academic research lab, Lilt supports and encourages its use by universities and their students. The technology in Lilt is based on machine translation and translator productivity research at Stanford University and Google. Co-founders John DeNero and Spence Green met while working on Google Translate in 2011, and started Lilt in early 2015 to bring the technology to modern businesses and translators. Lilt’s University program seeks to further research on machine translation and translator productivity by allowing professors to use and explore the tool in their classrooms, at no charge to them.

“Client turnaround time and pricing requirements are increasingly demanding. Modern translators will need machine assistance to produce better translations faster. Lilt is a product of an academic research lab, and we’re pleased to equip new translators with the latest technology for machine-assisted translation.”  Spence Green, CEO and Co-founder of Lilt.

Several academic institutions have already signed up for this program including University of Maryland, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterrey, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo, Dublin City University, University of Manchester, University of Surrey and University College London.

“Lilt exemplifies a paradigm shift in how translators and translation technology interact. As educators, I feel it is our job to prepare our students by exposing them to this technology as soon as possible for their future careers.” Jon Ritzdorf, Professor at University of Maryland and Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Any academic institution wishing to register or receive more information can visit

Kilgray releases memoQ Adriatic

Source: Slator
Story flagged by: Jared Tabor

Budapest (Hungary) 22 February, 2017 – Kilgray Translation Technologies, developer of leading memoQ translation environment, has issued a major feature set called memoQ Adriatic.

memoQ Adriatic is a rich set of new functionalities that provide new solutions and enhancements for the full memoQ product range: memoQ translator pro, memoQ translator pro project manager edition, memoQ server and memoQ’s Language Terminal.

The core theme of memoQ Adriatic is productivity. The feature set was developed heavily based on user input and created to boost productivity mainly in Project Management, Client Management and Financial Reporting and to aid translators, translator companies and enterprises active mainly in the fields of pharma, medical and legal industries.

A highlight of memoQ Adriatic is the new Customer Portal, a new product shipped primarily for translation companies or translation departments of organizations and corporate entities with memoQ server licences. Customer Portal extends the translation-localization document workflow with one more step: reaches out to the client to allow them to start, track and finish integrated workflows directly.

memoQ Adriatic enhancements in Project Management ensure a dramatic cut in idle time for PM staff and PM operations. New features ensure better resources management, tackle important challenges related to ergonomy, and also provide project resource and cost estimation even before project start.

Financial reporting receives a boost in memoQ Adriatic as the new Reporting Platform rolls out with several metrics to be introduced next to the initial two supporting the transparency of the organization.

The new Track Changes feature supports work flows in relation to industries that heavily rely on these functions such as pharma, legal and medical. New functions, such as the redesign of the compare box, segment filtering by match rate and the new change case mechanism assist translators in general; while the new pseudo-translation was designed to support those active mainly in the field of software localization.

In accordance with memoQ Responsive Evolution, memoQ Adriatic will be followed by further large feature packs in 2017 with the next one due to be released in Q2.

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