MT and the Cloud (Pt. 1)

This two-part blog discusses how Machine Translation platforms are making best use of cloud technology. It also looks at the benefits that Machine Translation brings to the Language Service Providers (LSPs) who are availing of it. In this first blog, we are going to look a bit more into the growing popularity of cloud technologies, particularly in Ireland, and find out why so many businesses are making this all important move.

Part 1. The Growing Popularity of the Cloud
A study published last year by ISACA and the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) stated that many of its participants felt the major innovations in cloud technologies were being rolled out within businesses and not to the markets. However, as the report suggests, cloud technology can serve as a catalyst for innovation among enterprises, and a cornerstone for change in “how technology is deployed” and “leveraged as a strategic resource”. The study stated that the future looked bright for the cloud, and in the past year, its optimism has been met by results.

In Ireland for example, the government has targeted the cloud computing industry in this year’s job action plan. Among its major objectives:

  • Treble the amount of Enterprise Ireland client companies providing services from cloud computing platforms from 80 to 250
  • Raise awareness to the competitive advantages of cloud computing
  • Help companies meet their Data Protection obligations as they switch to the cloud

Cloud computing concept, businessman with cloud over hand

And how about Irish companies who have made the big step to cloud processes in the past year? Well, according to the recently published Microsoft/Amárach Cloud Index, the number of Small and Medium Enterprises (with a staff of 5 to 50) using cloud technologies has increased by 21 per cent.

The index highlights some other key point:

  • 64% of respondents say cloud technology has met their expectations
  • 48% see the cloud as a business essential
  • 40% of respondents intend to begin some form of cloud programme within the year
  • 67% say it will help them meet the challenges facing their businesses and not simply providing an IT solution

So what do capital investment and the results of the index tell us about the cloud industry going forward? We can take three key points from the data. Firstly, it demonstrates the emphasis that industry stakeholders are placing on cloud applications and its introduction to business sector operations. Secondly, it shows that companies who see cloud technology as a business essential and a response to external threats are showing progressive attitudes that represent a break in tradition from the problem highlighted within the ISACA/CSA report – namely, keeping cloud technology in-house. And thirdly, it shows that the benefits of the cloud are not just exclusive to mega-rich multinationals, but also small and medium sized companies.

As an increasing number of companies move their processes to the cloud, it makes sense that they want similar and preferably better services to those which they have used to date. Machine Translation is now available to companies on the cloud and the second part to this blog will examine how it is providing a better automated translation service to customers than ever before.

The second part of this blog, “The Benefits of Cloud Machine Translation” will be available on the KantanMT blog on Monday July 1st.

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