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TC42, Conference Report

This year the long standing and world renowned conference – Translating and the Computer – has moved to a fully online delivery.  As it has, very generously been free to access for all, our students were encouraged to sign up and attend.

Three of our students have presented to the conference.  You can read about Anna’s, Daniya’s and Marina’s papers here.  

Detailed below are two conference reports from Katerina and Daniya.

Hello, world!
My name is Kateryna and I am a first year student of EMTTI programme. This week I had an honour to e-attend the annual conference Translating and the Computer 42. In this blog I shall share my impressions from the conference.

First, I would like to thank Mr João Esteves-Ferreira, Prof Ruslan Mitkov (our EM TTI coordinator), Mr Olaf-Michael Stefanov, Ms Maria Recort Ruiz, Ms Sandra Chambers and the rest of the Team for combining their great effort and making TC42 happen against the background of the harsh 2020 situation in the world.

I shall say that I enjoyed listening to each and every invited speaker, although one of the highlights of the conference was the opening presentation by Martin Benjamin “How AI Cured Coronavirus and Delivered Universal Translation, and Other MT Myths and Magic”.

It was important for me to hear Martin’s down-to-earth view on the current state of affairs in the domain of Machine Translation (MT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). There is no doubt that machine translation has improved markedly over the last couple of years, mainly due to deep learning (Neural Machine Translation). However, MT still does not outperform human translators so there is still room for further research in the field, which is encouraging for me as a student.

Rafal Jaworski’s “Assessing Cross-lingual Word similarities Using Neural Networks” presentation was of a special interest for me because in my future research I would like to focus on the way neural networks could help in identifying and translating multiword expressions.

Equally important was to listen to my fellow students from EMTTI programme Daniya Khamidullina, Anna Iankovskaia and Marina Tonkopeeva. Their quality and stimulating presentations inspired me to carry out my own research and to participate as a presenter at the conference the next year. At least it’s worth a try  I would like to reiterate my gratitude to all the organisers, participants and attendees of TC42. It was a truly enriching experience for me.

Looking forward to TC43!

Inspired from T42,
Profile picture of Katerina Poltorak
Kateryna Poltorak
Cohort 2020
This year’s edition of the Translating and the Computer conference was quite an unusual one. For the first time, the TC conference, which usually takes place in London, switched to the virtual format. This essentially made TC 42 go global as over 500 participants from a total of more than 60 countries registered to attend the event online. Three EM TTI students, including myself, got the chance to present their research to this international audience (you can read about our submissions here).

Despite the fully virtual format, the way that the conference was organised made it interactive and dynamic. There was a lot of audience engagement during the post-presentation Q&A sessions and in the workshop rooms. In addition, very fruitful follow-up discussions on all things translation and interpreting (and life ) took place during the daily chill-out sessions.

For the EM TTI scholars, TC 42 provided a wonderful chance to connect with other researchers and meet business representatives, to share experiences and to exchange ideas. As a student, I feel that attending industry events like this is a great opportunity to progress both academically and professionally. Apart from learning about the latest advances in research on translation and interpreting technology, attendees get a unique opportunity to gauge how the language services market might change with the advance of T&I technology and what kind of new employment opportunities might arise for technology-oriented linguists in the coming years. This makes TC42 the perfect match for the EM TTI student profile, and I would definitely encourage all T&I students to take part in the future editions of this conference.

Profile picture of Daniya Khamidullina
Daniya Khamidullina
Cohort 2019