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Sunday, May 24, 2015


Integrating language technology

David Filip

According to a prominent NLP researcher, the major barrier in language technology adoption is that “industries are still sitting in their XML caves.” This is only anecdotal evidence, but is nevertheless illustrative of the situation. The reality is that most corporate content is now owned or managed by support cost. Cutting down support cost is an imperative, but how do you do it without damaging user experience? Have you ever called your tech support and ended up banging your handset in desperation to get a live person onto the other end of the line? You have been a victim of the apparent success that NLP has achieved in your language. Integrating automated technologies is great, but there obviously are some gating factors. One is fitness for purpose, another is the business case and the third is to have your integration right. Having it right means make your homework with key users and use just the right amount of automation in the least intrusive way possible.

People do not mind using NLP facilitated services if they are user transparent and invisible. An example here is a mature search engine. You type your search phrase into a single input field in your browser (in most browsers it even is the functionally overloaded address field that will anticipate your typing and if you intend to use an exact location or a search term) and do not care what clever thing the machine did, as long as you get four out of five relevant entries as the top results within milliseconds. You are ever so slightly annoyed if you need to use search syntax or call up advanced search and filtering options to make what you want appear. . .

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Above excerpt taken from the January/February 2013 issue of MultiLingual published by MultiLingual Computing, Inc., 319 North First Avenue, Suite 2, Sandpoint, Idaho 83864-1495 USA, 208-263-8178, Fax: 208-263-6310. Subscribe

January/February, 2013