Dublin City University (DCU) is to lead a multi-million euro research partnership funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) that will develop the next generation of high tech automatic language translation. This five-year research programme will transform an important sector of Ireland's global software business - localisation - as well as a key driver of the global content distribution industry. DCU is collaborating in the project with academic partners, University College Dublin, University of Limerick and Trinity College Dublin, and with the companies IBM, Microsoft, Symantec, Dai Nippon Printing, and Idiom Technologies as well as Irish SMEs, Alchemy, VistaTech, SpeechStorm and Traslan.

The project is awarded Euro 16.8m by SFI, and the industry partners are contributing Euro 13.6m in materials, research services and additional funding. Ireland already has a substantial global footprint in the localisation industry - the process of adapting digital content, download manuals, software and other materials, to different languages and cultures.

The Irish project will tackle three critical problems for the localisation industry:

  • Volume: The amount of content to be translated and localised to the destination culture and environment is growing rapidly and massively outstrips the supply of human translators.
  • Access: Powerful, small devices such as mobile phones and PDAs require novel technologies integrating speech and text to support "on the move" delivery of, and access to multilingual information.
  • Personalisation: A new demand has rapidly emerged for the adaptation of a huge amount of multilingual content now available on the Web, for individual needs. It needs "instant" localisation and personalisation to meet the demands of the users.

Professor Joseph van Genabith, Director of the new Centre said: "Localisation as an industrial process was developed in Ireland. We have a unique concentration of university- and industry-based research and development expertise in language technologies, machine translation, speech processing, digital content management and localisation. The research centre is going to pool that expertise and develop the next generation of language and content management technologies to support and develop the localisation industry."

Please contact:
Prof. Josef van Genabith
National Centre for Language Technology NCLT
School of Computing, Dublin City University
Tel: +353 1 7005074
E-mail: josef@computing.dcu.ie

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