KantanMT – 2013 Year in Review

KantanMT 2013 year in ReviewKantanMT had an exciting year as it transitioned from a publicly funded business idea into a commercial enterprise that was officially launched in June 2013. The KantanMT team are delighted to have surpassed expectations, by developing and refining cutting edge technologies that make Machine Translation easier to understand and use.

Here are some of the highlights for 2013, as KantanMT looks back on an exceptional year.

Strong Customer Focus…

The year started on a high note, with the opening of a second office in Galway, Ireland, and KantanMT kept the forward momentum going as the year progressed. The Galway office is focused on customer service, product education and Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and is home to Aidan Collins, User Engagement Manager, Kevin McCoy, Customer Relationship Manager and MT Success Coach, and Gina Lawlor, Customer Relationship co-ordinator.

KantanMT officially launched the KantanMT Statistical Machine Translation (SMT) platform as a commercial entity in June 2013. The platform was tested pre-launch by both industry and academic professionals, and was presented at the European OPTIMALE (Optimizing Professional Translator Training in a Multilingual Europe) workshop in Brussels. OPTIMALE is an academic network of 70 partners from 32 European countries, and the organization aims to promote professional translator training as the translation industry merges with the internet and translation automation.

The KantanMT Community…

The KantanMT member’s community now includes top tier Language Service Providers (LSPs), multinationals and smaller organizations. In 2013, the community has grown from 400 members in January to 3400 registered members in December, and in response to this growth, KantanMT introduced two partner programs, with the objective of improving the Machine Translation ecosystem.

The Developer Partner Program, which supports organizations interested in developing integrated technology solutions, and the Preferred Supplier of MT Program, dedicated to strengthening the use of MT technology in the global translation supply chain. KantanMT’s Preferred Suppliers of MT are:

KantanMT’s Progress…

To date, the most popular target languages on the KantanMT platform are; French, Spanish and Brazilian-Portuguese. Members have uploaded more than 67 billion training words and built approx. 7,000 customized KantanMT engines that translated more than 500 million words.

As usage of the platform increased, KantanMT focused on developing new technologies to improve the translation process, including a mobile application for iOS and Android that allows users to get access to their KantanMT engines on the go.

KantanMT’s Core Technologies from 2013…

KantanMT have been kept busy continuously developing and releasing new technologies to help clients build robust business models to integrate Machine Translation into existing workflows.

  • KantanAnalytics™ – segment level Quality Estimation (QE) analysis as a percentage ‘fuzzy match’ score on KantanMT translations, provides a straightforward method for costing and scheduling translation projects.
  • BuildAnalytics™ – QE feature designed to measure the suitability of the uploaded training data. The technology generates a segment level percentage score on a sample of the uploaded training data.
  • KantanWatch™ – makes monitoring the performance of KantanMT engines more transparent.
  • TotalRecall™ – combines TM and MT technology, TM matches with a ‘fuzzy match’ score of less than 85% are automatically put through the customized MT engine, giving the users the benefits of both technologies.
  • KantanISR™ Instant Segment Retraining technology that allows members near instantaneous correction and retraining of their KantanMT engines.
  • PEX Rule Editor – an advanced pattern matching technology that allows members to correct repetitive errors, making a smoother post-editing process by reducing post-editing effort, cost and times.
  • Kantan API – critical for the development of software connectors and smooth integration of KantanMT into existing translation workflows. The success of the MemoQ connector, led to the development of subsequent connectors for MemSource and XTM.

KantanMT sourced and cleaned a range of bi-directional domain specific stock engines that consist of approx. six million words across legal, medical and financial domains and made them available to its members. KantanMT also developed support for Traditional and Simplified Chinese, Japanese, Thai and Croatian Languages during 2013.

Recognition as Business Innovators…

KantanMT received awards for business innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the year. Founder and Chief Architect, Tony O’Dowd was presented with the ICT Commercialization award in September.

In October, KantanMT was shortlisted for the PITCH start-up competition and participated in the ALPHA Program for start-ups at Dublin’s Web Summit, the largest tech conference in Europe. Earlier in the year KantanMT was also shortlisted for the Vodafone Start-up of the Year awards.

KantanMT were silver sponsors at the annual 2013 ASLIB Conference ‘Adopting the theme Translating and the Computer’ that took place in London, in November, and in October, Tony O’Dowd, presented at the TAUS Machine Translation Showcase at Localization World in Silicon Valley.

KantanMT have recently published a white paper introducing its cornerstone Quality Estimation technology, KantanAnalytics, and how this technology provides solutions to the biggest industry challenges facing widespread adoption of Machine Translation.

KantanAnalytics WhitePaper December 2013

For more information on how to introduce Machine Translation into your translation workflow contact Niamh Lacy (niamhl@kantanmt.com).

tcworld special

The tcworld Conference & tekom Fair starts tomorrow, November 6th in Wiesbaden, Germany. Aidan Collins, KantanMT’s User Engagement Manager will be visiting the conference on Thursday and is looking forward to seeing you all there. To help keep you organised, KantanMT put together a list of professional and expert presentations and workshops relevant for localization professionals. Expert speakers will cover topics on content strategy and design, terminology management, translation, localization, and quality assurance.
Rhein-Main-Hallen convention centre Wiesbaden, Germany, KantanMT
Source: GCB German Convention Bureau e. V, 2011.

The fair opens at 9am on Wednesday and finishes at 4pm on Friday in the Rhein-Main-Hallen, Wiesbaden’s biggest convention centre. The centre has more than 20,000m² of conference space, seven exhibition halls and a number of conference and congress rooms. The largest congress hall has the capacity to seat 3,000 people. The exhibition’s size and central location, just half a kilometre from the city centre, make it an excellent option for hosting the technical communication event.The line up includes:

Wednesday November 6th 9:00 – 18:00

Content Strategy 08:45 – 09:30: ‘Strategic Video Storytelling’. The Content Wrangler’s Scott Abel, will give the opening keynote speech, a presentation on Content Strategies and the importance of using stories in video production.

International Management 08:45 – 10:30: ‘A Business Model Generation Session’. Diego Bartolome will host a design thinking workshop on technology and languages.

Content Strategy 11:15 – 12:00: ‘The Need for Speed: Preparing for New Requirements’. Content Strategy Consultant, Sarah O’Keefe, will present on the importance of developing content initiatives to improve technical communication workflows.

Language Technology 11:15 – 12:00: ‘Real-time Selection of Best Assets Based on Productivity Analysis’. Anton Voronov, Innovations Director for ABBYY Language Services will discuss the use of productivity metrics and translator preferences in developing a pricing structure and best practices for Machine Translation deployment.

Language Technology 14:45 – 15:30: ‘Developing “Ideal” Software for Language Industry’. Julia Makoushina and Eugenia Tashkun will co-present on developing the “ideal” Language technology. They will discuss the software possibilities from both the user and developer’s perspective, and how to identify and meet user needs.

Language Technology 16:15 – 17:00: ‘Extracting Translation Relations for Human-readable Dictionaries from Bilingual Text’. Kurt Eberle, Managing Director and Co-founder of Lingenio GmbH, talks about “cross-lingual expression” through the identification and extraction of dictionary entries from source and target texts.

Content Strategy 17:15 – 18:00: ‘The Convergence Era: Translation Becomes a Utility’. TAUS Founder and Director, Jaap van der Meer, will discuss the evolution of the translation industry and what this will mean for content creators.

Thursday November 7th 9:00 – 18:00

Localization 08:30 – 08:45: ‘Welcome Session’. Don De Palma, Founder Common Sense Advisory will give a welcome session in Room 12B.

Localization 08:45 – 09:30: ‘Is Your Content Ready to Go Global?’ Localization and Content Strategy Consultant, Kit Brown-Hoekstra will discuss how localized quality content can be leveraged as a competitive advantage.

Localization 09:45 – 10:30: ‘Rules of Engagement: Successful Partnerships with Translation/Localization Companies’. Aki Ito, Localization Professional, will co-present with Robin Franke, a Technical Product Communication Specialist, on the client-vendor partnership and the role each partner plays when working together.

Language Technology 11:15 – 12:00: ‘Welcome to the Cloud! Terminology as a Service’. Dr. Andrejs Vasiljevs will introduce a cloud based terminology platform and solutions for using multilingual terminological data. The talk will target both language workers and Machine Translation users.

Localization 12:15 – 13:00: ‘Machine Translation in the Mainstream: New Tools, New Gains, New Headaches’. Daniel Grasmick from Lucy Software and Services GmbH, will discuss how Machine Translation can be built into the localization lifecycle.

Language Technology 16:00 – 16:45: ‘Terminology in the cloud with MemoQ and TaaS’. CEO of Kilgray Translation Technologies, Istvan Lengyel and Kilgray’s Founder, Gabor Ugray will present on TaaS CAT tool solutions and their integration with memoQ.

Localization 17:15 – 18:00: ‘Closing Session: Summaries and Lessons Learned’. Don De Palma will cover the sessions highlights and future localization “trends” and “innovations”.

Friday November 8th 9:00 – 16:00

Localization 08:45 – 09:30: ‘Simplified English and MT: Best Practices for Localization Content Optimization and Simplification’. Alberto Ferreira, Avira Operations will discuss Machine Translation and automated post editing integration into the localization workflow.

Localization 09:45 – 10:30: ‘A Unified Model for Document and Translation Quality Assurance’. Dr. Aljoscha Burchardt and Dr. Arle Lommel will address Translation quality assurance (QA) with QTLaunchPad, an open source software project funded by the European commission.

Localization 14:30 – 15:15: ‘UX and Localization: Optimal Design Practices for World-Ready Applications’. Alberto Ferreira will talk about user interface (UI) and web design localization trends based on “platform-independent design principles”.  Ferreira will cover topics such as; usability testing, visual text layout, cultural adaptation, internationalisation concerns, cost reduction and the time-to-market development cycle.

Localization 15:30 – 16:15: ‘The “International Persona” – Usability and Localization Communication consultant, Henrietta Hartl will discuss the use of an “international persona” in localization usability evaluation.

It will be a busy couple of days with informative presentations and workshops from industry experts and market leaders. KantanMT hopes you all enjoy the conference!

Would you like to learn how Machine Translation can increase your business opportunities? Contact Kevin McCoy, KantanMT’s Machine Translation Success Coach: kevinmcc@kantanmt.com.

The Rise of MT

Aidan Headshot B+W

Aidan Collins is User Engagement Manager at KantanMT. In this blog, Aidan discusses how Machine Translation can benefit Localisation Service Providers(LSPs) as they meet the challenge of translating a growing volume of information.

Machine Translation Rides the Crest of a Volume Wave

“Findings from Common Sense Advisory show that if marketing, customer care, web, or translation managers are going to meet the needs of their many users, they will have to evaluate how to integrate MT into their global content strategies – regardless of the type or size of their organization.” Don DePalma, Common Sense Advisory

The above quotation, written in the 2011 article As Content Volume Explodes, Machine Translation Becomes an Inevitable Part of Global Content Strategy has proven to be prescient. The article flagged up what was clearly becoming a new wave in global content strategy management. It is now clear that in the last few years, many LSPs (and even other non-LSP companies) have begun to examine the advantages of introducing Machine Translation to their everyday workflows. In the past months, as User Engagement Manager at KantanMT, I have been approached for information by lots of LSPs who see adopting Machine Translation as an imperative for their companies.

Indeed, I have also liaised with companies from the automotive, medical, IT, and legal industries who are all trying to find out more about Machine Translation. Many of these are doing this to decide whether Machine Translation is a service that they should now be requesting from their LSPs; others are looking at the feasibility of introducing Machine Translation in to their own existing localisation/translation workflows.

All have expressed one common reason for approaching me – they know that KantanMT has made Machine Translation affordable, accessible, and easy-to-use. Where once they saw Machine Translation as an onerous and expensive option with high consultancy fees, expensive high spec hardware and complex software, and  requiring highly educated staff with big salaries – they now see it as being as feasible and easy to use as the everyday CAT tools they already know.

Globalisation is a driving force behind increasing demand for affordable and high quality Machine Translations. This is because client companies are striving to make larger volumes of information available in an increasing number of languages so as to compete on a global level.

To draw another quote from the aforementioned Common Sense Advisory article:

“It’s simply a matter of numbers. There is far too much content being created and far too few translators or money to translate it all – or even a tiny fraction of it.”

Increasing volumes of content and too few human translators is a fraught equation. It is one that presents LSPs with a challenge that they must address. Many LSPs are begiinning to realise that an accessible MT solution, such as that provided by KantanMT, meets this challenge and brings with it very clear advantages:

  • Increased Productivity: By integrating KantanMT into localisation workflows, LSPs can increase their translation productivity (some KantanMT members have reported increased productivity levels of up to 400% on certain translation projects!).
  • Increased Capacity: By increasing translation productivity, LSPs can grow their translation capacity. Members using KantanMT have reported that the technology has enabled them to take on larger client projects which they would previously have had to turn away.
  • Increased Project Margins: Faster turnaround times on translation jobs and increased translation capacity means more profit.
  • Increased Profit Allows for Investment: Companies are now finding that they can invest more money in growing their businesses. They no longer need to remain stagnant but can confidently plan a growth strategy.
  • Wider Customer Base: Opportunities and customers who were hitherto out of the reach of SME-sized LSPs are now accessible as Machine Translation increases the workflow capacity of these SME-sized LSPs.
  • Overcomes the Resources Problem: LSPs are able to take on a bigger number of large clients without draining their own resources.
  • Optimised Use of Translation Memories(TMs): Many LSPs have gigabytes of TMs that they find difficult to optimise. The ability to now take these valuable reservoirs of data and to upload them to create Machine Translation engines means LSPs can make the most of these huge databases.

And it is clear that LSPs are voting with their “digital feet”! In just six months, KantanMT has seen over a thousand LSPs sign up to try out this affordable and user friendly Machine Translation platform. They have simply had to register on KantanMT.com and begin uploading their data.

These statistics show how LSPs have thrived using KantanMT to date:

  • Over four billion words uploaded
  • Almost 1,500 Machine Translation engines created (many within hours)
  • 168 million words translated in to multiple languages

Figures as of April 15, 2013.

KantanMT has free webinars on KantanMT.com to help neophytes become familiar with uploading data and creating powerful Machine Translation engines. I can guarantee that people will be amazed at how easy and accessible we have made Machine Translation. And if you need any more help or advice simply contact me at aidanc@kantanmt.com . I am eager to help!

Aidan Collins, User Engagement Manager, KantanMT.com