Last month, Google Translate celebrated its 6th birthday. According to Google, more than 200 million people use this simple Internet translation service monthly. “What all the professional human translators in the world produce in a year, our system translates in roughly a single day,” said Google Translate engineer Franz Och, who originally invented this Google service.
In 2010, the US Defense Department spent nearly $ 700 million on a single translation contract for human interpreters – mostly in Afghanistan. A high demand for machine translation systems that would reduce this vast budget is obvious. Continue reading
Machine Translation is becoming an increasing issue in the worldwide patent industry. In a landmark step towards increased use of worldwide patent information on the internet, the Commissioner of the Japan Patent Office (JPO), Yoshiyuki Iwai, and the President of the European Patent Office (EPO), Benoît Battistelli, have signed an agreement on 6 February 2012 which will provide users of the patent system with better machine translations of patents from Japanese into English and then into German and French. The agreement significantly enhances the scope and quality of Espacenet, the public patent information service on the EPO website, by adding an automatic translation tool. Continue reading
The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) recently launched an online machine translation tool. It allows users to translate the titles and abstracts of inventions from English to French and Chinese and vice versa. Other language pairs, notably Korean-English and Japanese-English are being studied. The tool is a WIPO in-house development using Moses open source technology and has been specifically trained with bilingual corpuses of text from the patent field, taking account of the International Patent Classification (IPC).