09 March 2014

MT update, take #1

Machine translation specialist David Grunwald has posted a ten-point update of the state of the art on the TAUS blog.
Recommended reading.

1 comment:

  1. I think I can claim some expertise too. I started in MT research in Montreal in 1966. It's true I've been out of it since 1972, but I keep an eye on it.
    Two points:
    1. "MT is as mature as it will ever be." Predictions like that are dangerous and without foundation. It's true it needs another breakthrough like SMT, but 30 years ago nobody would have predicted SMT.
    2. "MT will never be as good as professional, human translation." Certainly not in my lifetime, but it's a misguided holy grail. What matters isn't whether it's as 'good' but whether it's as useful. Millions of people already use MT every day without worrying much about the 'quality'. I used Google Translate myself today in order to understand a bit of Basque that was inserted in a Spanish document. I was very grateful. Let's put it this way: do you want a craft product and will you pay the price, or can you make do with its free, immediate industrial analogue?


Full circle

After completing a BSc in physics and maths in Australia and extended travels in Africa I found a job in Paris that left me with considerab...