Solving Babel

January 28, 2016

Solving Babel

Posted: 28/01/16

How can institutions in the 21st Century use technology to overcome language barriers? In September 2015 the European Commission supported the development of a multilingual Digital Single Market (DSM) by enabling public services for Europe’s citizens and businesses to operate freely across language barriers.  As the National Anchor Point in Ireland for the ELRC, Associate Director of the ADAPT Centre for Digital Content Technology and Professor of Computing at DCU, Professor Andy Way, will facilitate a workshop to address the needs of Irish public administrations in today’s multilingual working environment.

The workshop will include dedicated experts from the European Commission, language technologists, language service providers, along with representatives from national public administrations and government bodies. The aim of the workshop is to identify sources of multi-lingual language resources, and shed light on technical and legal issues involved in the use of data from automated translations.

Currently translation services for the public administrations of Member States are offered by a machine translation (MT) platform within the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF.AT).  The CEF.AT platform addresses various public administration scenarios in the areas of consumer rights, health, public procurement, social security, culture and others. It also powers Europe’s public online services such as Europeana, the Open Data Portal, and the Online Dispute Resolution platform. With the help of the CEF.AT, public administrations across Europe are a step closer to operating without language barriers.

Speaking about the workshop Professor Andy Way of ADAPT said: “At the ADAPT Centre for Digital Content Technology, researchers are working on machine translation for specific use cases, translator productivity tools, translation scoring and analytics, multilingual search, personalisation and user experience, and multimodal and multimedia translation.  The technology behind CEF.AT is a statistical machine translation system, MT@EC, which learns how to translate from existing translations.  The broad expertise in MT at the ADAPT Centre places us in a perfect position to realise a Europe free from language barriers.”

The Automated Translation platform of Connecting Europe Facility (CEF.AT) facilitates multilingual communication and exchange of documents and other linguistic content in Europe between national public administrations and between these administrations and EU citizens and businesses. The CEF.AT platform will address various public administration scenarios in the areas of consumer rights, health, public procurement, social security, culture and others. It will power Europe’s public online services such as Europeana, the Open Data Portal, and the Online Dispute Resolution platform. With the help of the CEF.AT, public administrations across Europe will be one step closer to operating without language barriers.

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