digital economy

Will there be CAT tools in 2020?

by Manuel Herranz The speed at which computers and computing have evolved over the last 30 years has brought massive changes to many professions –and change for translation companies has not been an exception. However, the speed at which automation has hit and awaken our industry has often been “slow”. I mean automation not just in the general sense of machine translation, but most kinds of automations, including project management.  Adoption and progress have been painful, if we measure how clients often measure us: per capita productivity or how fast can you turn your translations around. The revolution brought about by the surge and increasing acceptance of machine translation in the last 5 years can only find a comparison in the “revolution” brought about by CAT tools in the 90’s. So, the question soon arises: Will there be CAT tools in 2020? Is a higher level of automation going to […]

The Little PangeaMT Engine that could…

A story of The Little Engine That Could inspired a lot of kids and adults around the world back in the days and still continues to do so … It was the little blue engine that was the star of the day and not the fancy and extravagant train engines because she had the right attitude in wanting to help others! Lessons learned: you don’t have to be big and stylish to do great things…you “just” need to believe and work hard…. And be helpful! Others will notice the effort. I arrived at Pangeanic HQ in sunny Valencia, Spain, on my first week of job (I started as a Market Development Director two weeks ago), and I kind of related that story to Pangeanic and its Machine Translation Engine solutions (this play on words with “engine” seems ideal in this situation). A medium size translation company at heart, Pangeanic has […]

PangeaMT Webinar on Translation Customization and DIY MT

by Manuel Herranz Machine translation is a hot topic – and will be a hot topic for some years to come. But it is not only a hot topic with a lot of mystifying hype around it. Elia Yuste, Andreas Thömel and (I hope) myself came a little bit closer to clearing doubts about what is a customized machine translation engine, what is machine translation DIY. Our Gala Webinar aimed at clarifying some misconceptions about language companies building their own tools and applying them successfully in the language market. The language industry is a very varied industry, with few technological players which dominate the landscape and a myriad of smaller tools which fit many purposes, large and small. PangeaMT was born as the technological division solving the needs of a translation company. PangeaMT now has a life of its own and it is a well-respected, mature technology. The presentation is available already […]

Cloud Traffic and Data Will Increase Translation Services

Cisco estimates that global cloud traffic will grow 45% annually until 2016, with translation services growing at around 15% to 20% per year. According to Ian  Henderson, CTO of Rubic, a translation and location company, this means that many new machine translators must enter the industry each year to handle the content. On the other hand, Raymond Kurzweil, one of the brightest minds in the world, director of technology at Google and a futurist known for his predictions about artificial intelligence, predicts that machines will match human intelligence and perform several feats that seem to us science fiction nowadays, including human-quality translation, by year 2029. Current happenings also suggest a strong role for non-human translation, with machine translation (MT) advancing rapidly. Three simultaneous-translation devices have been announced since June 2012, including one by Microsoft that renders live audio translations from the spoken word, respecting the tones and inflections of the […]

Human Translation or Machine Translation – What’s Best for Me?

For some people, using a translation software program to translate a piece of text from one language to the next is enough. They believe the current state-of-the-art is good enough to provide Human Translation or Machine Translation. It would be naive to believe this always works. We have proven at Pangeanic that this works in applied contexts, when we are dealing with a particular domain, enough clean data and when certain conditions apply. Please refer to many of our presentations since 2009 on the use of applied machine translation to speed translation of documentation in particular. But as we all know, it takes a lot more than just software. The application of unrestricted, universal machine translation will take some time. In fact, it would not be fair to talk about “machine translation” in general but language combinations (English/Spanish/French/Portuguese/Scandinavian) in which it is undoubtedly successful -whilst in other languages certain nuances make […]

Multilingual web is more than translation (1/2)

by Manuel Herranz It is beyond doubt that the web has become a multilingual. The work, experiences and cross-pollination with other disciplines, from machine translation to localization and semantics, were shared at EU-sponsored Multilingual Web event which took place in Rome during 12-13th March 2013. Whilst technologies such as machine translation are already well-integrated for fast web page translation, it was reassuring to see that even large web actors, such as Google consider there is plenty of work to do in making the web truly multilingual. The release of ITS 2 and the new features and possibilities that html5 opens made the venue a meeting point for professionals, practitioners and academics dealing with the semantic web, translation, applied machine translation and CMS tool providers. Google’s experiences were shared by Mark Davis and Vladimir Weinstein and pinpointed translation and localization issues which are often overseen. We already assume that a page can […]

Moses is not the new Messiah

by Manuel Herranz If you run a translation company or translation department or have some sort of connection with the translation industry, you have noticed without a doubt that MT (or automatic translation) is the flavor of the year in 2010… and will be for many years to come. It has and will change the way do things in this industry.  Several factors have been an unstoppable increase in the globalization of services and support, smaller budgets from buyers, an increase in international trading of services and the need for more content and more multilingual content in more languages. As of May 2009, there were 487 billion gigabytes of data which were increasing 50% a year (Oracle) or doubling every 11 hours (IBM). There are both exogenous and endogenous factors for things to reach maturity level now and not earlier or later. Among the latter factors we may include the fact that the bases did already […]

Breaking News – a few days later: “Aha, SDL has bought Language Weaver! So what?”

by Elia Yuste & Manuel Herranz SDL announced the purchase of Language Weaver (LW) on Thursday 15th July 2010. General media as well as GILT industry experts have spread the news in just no time in the form of newsletter updates, opinion articles in professional networks, blog entries or tweets. The news coverage has been phenomenal. Everyone has been asking about the why’s, the how’s and the thereafter’s of this financial move by SDL. We coincide with some leading industry analysts in that perhaps Language Weaver’s future will not be as rosy as it may seem. Perhaps it will follow the same destiny as Idiom once did, from market establishment to product support discontinuation following its acquisition by big buying father SDL. As an independent LSP offering its own customized MT technology, Pangeanic is in a privileged position to offer dedicated client-focused solutions, based on innovative MT and, if required, post-editing […]

IBM + Lionbridge MT agreement – What does it mean for the industry?

by Manuel Herranz The news of the month has undoubtedly been the announcement by Lionbridge to partner with IBM to develop (and probably offer) machine translation solutions. Possibly, the intention is to offer the advantages of MT to Lionbridge existing clients and maybe to control the technology. After all, whoever controls the technology, has a good chance of gaining (or consolidating) market dominance. The move must be welcome by all true believers of MT as the (new?) force of change in the translation industry. However, even though Lionbridge is the biggest language company jumping in the MT-DIY boat, it is not the first one to combine the offer of MT+PE as a substitute to the (increasingly old-fashioned?) TM or T+E+P models. With translator production reaching 850-1000+ words per hour and mounting production and  price pressures, 20th-century technologies seem too cumbersome and antiquated for the demands of multilingual digital content. Who […]

BBC debate demonstrates power of real time machine translation

MT is in the news. On 4th March, The Economist published a review of what the web might feel like without linguistic barriers. “Cyber-multilinguism” is increasingly a reflection of the world we live in. A few days later (9th March) The New York Times run a comparison of machine translated texts from French, Spanish, Russian, German and Arabic into English and the quality obtained from several engines. The texts dealt with works of literature, which may well have been in the training material of the engines, but it also dealt with current affairs and news clips. Google presented a cell phone link to MT. Last week, the BBC conducted a new experiment to test how people and the media can make use and really broaden the horizons by using MT, even if only a in a very generalist way. MT users seemed happy with 80%-90% accuracy. A couple of findings I thought were […]