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BBN Technologies - DARPA GALE Program


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BBN Technologies
: 23 January, 2007  (Company News)
BBN Technologies, announced today it has been awarded $16 million in additional funding by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in year two of the Global Autonomous Language Exploitation (GALE) program.
The goal of GALE is to develop and apply software technologies to transcribe speech, translate both speech and text, and distill large volumes of speech and text in multiple languages, with over 90% accuracy by the end of the program. Such a capability would help U.S. analysts recognize critical information in foreign languages quickly so they could act on it in a timely fashion. During the first year of the program, BBN achieved or exceeded the goals of 75% accuracy for translation of text and 65% for speech, whether it was the well-articulated speech of broadcast news or the more informal speech of broadcast conversations. In year two, the accuracy goals become more challenging.

Tad Elmer, president and CEO, BBN Technologies, said, 'The BBN team performed very well on the evaluation at the end of year one. Achieving the performance that DARPA requires in the years ahead will demand the best work from the best minds in the field—fortunately, that's who we have on our team.'

The BBN GALE team includes BBN speech and language scientists as well as researchers from academic institutions in the U.S. and abroad. The BBN team is taking an integrated approach to reaching the ambitious accuracy goals by integrating the transcription, translation, and distillation components into a single process instead of using the traditional linked approach of speech-to-text (STT) followed by machine translation (MT) and distillation. Because language, both speech and text, is fluid, the BBN team will use automatic adaptation and contextually-aware processing at all system levels to optimize performance by adapting to different languages, dialects, topics, speakers, semantic nuance, and more.
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