Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
Build Apps 5x Faster
For Half the Cost
Enterprise Cloud Computing

On Force.com
Microsoft/Windows
DDoS Protection Powered By Verisign
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Microsoft Demonstrates Breakthrough Language Translation Sofware

Microsoft Demonstrates Breakthrough Language Translation Sofware
By Jennifer LeClaire

Share
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Share on Google Plus

"We may not have to wait until the 22nd century for a usable equivalent of Star Trek's universal translator, and we can also hope that as barriers to understanding language are removed, barriers to understanding each other might also be removed," said Rick Rashid, Microsoft's Chief Research Officer.
 


Microsoft is taking speech recognition where no man has gone before. Rick Rashid, Microsoft's Chief Research Officer, recently offered a demonstration in Tianjin, China at the Microsoft Research Asia's 21st Century Computing event.

During his demonstration, Rashid showcased the latest results of a breakthrough in collaborative research between Microsoft and the University of Toronto--reducing the error rate for speech by more than 30 percent compared to older methods. That, explained Rashid, means that instead of having one word in every four or five incorrect, the error rate is only one wrong word in every seven or eight.

"While still far from perfect, this is the most dramatic change in accuracy since the introduction of hidden Markov modeling in 1979," Rashid wrote in a blog post, "and as we add more data to the training we believe that we will get even better results."

English to Chinese in Your Own Voice

Rashid's presentation also demonstrated how Microsoft takes the text that represents his speech and runs it through translation. Specifically, he turned his English into Chinese in two steps. The system first took his words and found the Chinese equivalents, which he called the hard part. The second step reorders the words to be appropriate for Chinese.

"Of course, there are still likely to be errors in both the English text and the translation into Chinese, and the results can sometimes be humorous," Rashid said. "Still, the technology has developed to be quite useful."

Rashid magnified Microsoft's achievement of enabling an English speaker to present in Chinese in his or her own voice. That feat required a text-to-speech system that Microsoft researchers built using a few hours of speech from a native Chinese speaker and properties of his voice taken from an hour of pre-recorded English speeches.

Star Trek-Like Capabilities

"Though it was a limited test, the effect was dramatic, and the audience came alive in response," Rashid said. "When I spoke in English, the system automatically combined all the underlying technologies to deliver a robust speech to speech experience -- my voice speaking Chinese."

Rashid admits that the results are still not perfect and that there is still much work to be done, but he and others hope that in a few years Microsoft will have systems that can completely break down language barriers.

"In other words, we may not have to wait until the 22nd century for a usable equivalent of Star Trek's universal translator, and we can also hope that as barriers to understanding language are removed, barriers to understanding each other might also be removed," Rashid said. "The cheers from the crowd of 2000 mostly Chinese students, and the commentary that's grown on China's social media forums ever since, suggests a growing community of budding computer scientists who feel the same way."

We turned to Rob Enderle, principal analyst at The Enderle Group, about the innovative research. He told us real-time translation has been a struggle because it requires a lot of processing power. But Microsoft is making strong strides.

"With real-time translation, suddenly you can now go places and ask questions and the other person will understand you," Enderle said. "Sentence structure is often very different and so translation can be very difficult as well. The system has to listen to the entire series of words before it can provide an accurate translation. That requires a substantial amount of processing power. But we're closer now than many of us thought."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

Travis:

Posted: 2012-11-15 @ 5:52am PT
great article



Salesforce.com is the market and technology leader in Software-as-a-Service. Its award-winning CRM solution helps 82,400 customers worldwide manage and share business information over the Internet. Experience CRM success. Click here for a FREE 30-day trial.


 Microsoft/Windows
1.   Windows 9 Preview Date: Sept. 30?
2.   Price Wars Hitting Laptop Market?
3.   Office 365 Tailored for Attorneys
4.   Plan Your Move from Windows 7 Now
5.   Microsoft Patch Tuesday Stars IE


advertisement
China Puts Microsoft Under the Lens
Official anti-monopoly probe launched.
Average Rating:
Plan Your Move from Windows 7 Now
But don't rush to deploy Windows 8.
Average Rating:
Dynamics CRM Online Extends Reach
Now available in 17 more countries.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
UPS Stores in 24 States Hit by Data Breach
Big Brown has been breached. UPS said that about 105,000 customer transactions at 51 of its UPS Store locations in 24 states could have been compromised between January and August.
 
Cost of Target Data Breach: $148 Million Plus Loss of Trust
The now infamous Target data breach is still costing the company -- and its shareholders -- plenty. In fact, the retailing giant forecast the December 2013 incident cost shareholders $148 million.
 
Aruba Networks Handles Black Hat with Aplomb
It's not an easy job. Aruba Networks' task throughout the Black Hat USA conference in Las Vegas this month was to ensure thousands of attendees could connect without malicious attacks.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Acer's New Desktop Box Rides the Chrome OS Wave
Filling out its Chrome OS line, Acer is following the introduction of a larger Chromebook line earlier this month with a new tiny $180 desktop Chromebox and also a smaller Chromebook.
 
Three New Lenovo PCs Aimed at Business Users
Businesses everywhere want computing solutions that do more for less money, and Lenovo has unveiled three new desktop PCs that offer solid computing at a budget-minded price.
 
Aruba Networks Handles Black Hat with Aplomb
It's not an easy job. Aruba Networks' task throughout the Black Hat USA conference in Las Vegas this month was to ensure thousands of attendees could connect without malicious attacks.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Google Glass Adds Voice Access to Phone Contacts
The latest update to Google Glass will let users access their top 20 phone contacts with voice commands alone. A user can then choose a phone call, Google hangouts, e-mail or text messaging.
 
Samsung, B&N Target Amazon with Nook Tablet
They've seen the enemy and it is Amazon. So Samsung and Barnes & Noble are teaming up to combat their common foe with a 7-inch tablet that blends Samsung’s tech, Nook’s content and e-reader platform.
 
Acer's New Desktop Box Rides the Chrome OS Wave
Filling out its Chrome OS line, Acer is following the introduction of a larger Chromebook line earlier this month with a new tiny $180 desktop Chromebox and also a smaller Chromebook.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.