The TAUS (Translation Automation User Society) User Conference is an annual event focused on automated and machine translations. This year the conference was recently held on October 6-7 in Santa Clara, right before Localization World 2011.
The TAUS User Conference
The Conference unofficially started on the 5th with some significant activity on Twitter with hashtag #tausuc11 and officially kicked off the following day with a panel on the Multilingual Web. This was followed by in-depth discussions on interoperability and open translation platforms such as XLIFF and OAXAL.
Later in the afternoon, the presentations focused on the open exchange of technology. Maxim Khalilov and Rahzeb Choudhury presented the Taus Laboratories. Adobe introduced tools to work with the open platform of statistical machine translation Moses. Logrus presented a TMX file editor for Moses that is not Open Source. Then, there were presentations on cases of integration of Moses. Finally, Symantec presented SymEval MT, an open source solution. All of the developments presented were interesting and are worth investigating in more detail.
After lunch there was a “great” debate about interoperability where everyone actively participated in two separate working groups. Jaap van der Meer, the organizer, joked that nobody probably thought they would work so much at the conference. My groups were led by Wayne Bourland from Dell and Andrew Pimlott from GlobalSight.
The evening was filled with a reception where I had the opportunity to have dinner with Mauricio Vicente, the CTO of Language Services Associates. We discussed our concerns about how we, LSPs, are going to integrate machine translation to offer a better service to our customers.
The next day started early with “breakfast brainstorming” concerning TDA. TDA is Taus Data, a nonprofit organization that provides a neutral and safe platform for sharing language data. TDA is not the same as TAUS. TAUS is the association devoted to discussing and sharing experiences on automation and interoperability in the translation industry. Trusted Translations is a member of TAUS and will soon be a member of TDA. The most interesting concept discussed at the breakfast was the need for TDA to have a clear marketing plan, as pointed out by Microsoft’s representative.
The morning session of the second day continued with the presentation of case studies on machine translations. The discussion then moved to multilingual interaction, highlighting the experiences of Intel and Microsoft. The afternoon was devoted to research on future technologies and translation innovation.
The weekend before Localization World
With all of these topics fresh in my mind, I could spend my entire Saturday chatting with Manuel Herranz, of Pangeanic. We specifically talked about the solutions offered by his company for LSPs that want to start to provide automatic translation solutions to their customers. And finally, I had a day of rest in preparation for the next conference in Santa Clara, Localization World, where I will be presenting on the last day on “International SEO”. As the participants of the Localization World start rolling in, activity on Twitter with hashtag #lwsv starts to grow.