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. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
Vblock™ Systems:
Advanced converged infrastructure
increases productivity & lowers costs.

www.vce.com
Microsoft/Windows
24/7/365 Network Uptime
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Microsoft Demonstrates Breakthrough Language Translation Sofware
Microsoft Demonstrates Breakthrough Language Translation Sofware

By Jennifer LeClaire
November 10, 2012 9:15AM

    Bookmark and Share
"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



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 Microsoft/Windows
1.   Officials Reveal Microsoft Data Center
2.   Microsoft, BMC Targeting VMware
3.   Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
4.   Review: Windows Embraces the Past
5.   Patch Tuesday Offers Critical Fixes


advertisement
Microsoft, BMC Targeting VMware
Deal simplifies cloud management.
Average Rating:
Last Fixes Tuesday for XP, Office 2003
Microsoft closing out support for two.
Average Rating:
Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
Siri-like virtual assistant has promise.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
What Verizon's Data Breach Report Can Teach Enterprises
It’s probably not a jaw-dropper, but cyberespionage is officially on the rise. And the use of stolen or misused credentials is still the leading way the bad guys gain access to corporate information.
 
Top Cyberthreats Exposed by Verizon Report
Beyond Heartbleed, there are cyberthreats vying to take down enterprise networks, corrupt smartphones, and wreak havoc on businesses. Verizon is exposing these threats in a new report.
 
Where Do Web Sites Stand, Post-Heartbleed?
A security firm says the vast majority of Web sites have patched themselves to protect against the Heartbleed bug, but now there are questions raised on the reliability of open-source programs.
 

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 | Small Business | 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 | XML/RSS Feed

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.