11 Apr/19

GALA 2019 Review: AI-driven Language Service Industry

Our Head of Marketing and Head of Translation Technology at GALA 2019
Our Head of Marketing and Head of Translation Technology at GALA 2019
Photo source: memoQ

The event of the year for the translation and localisation industry, the GALA Munich 2019, turned out to be the biggest conference to-date for the GALA Global Association and the one to shift the spotlight to Artificial Intelligence. EVS Translations’ representatives at the GALA Conference connected with the brightest in the industry, shared best practices and milestone pointers from our over 25 years of business growth strategy, and discussed collectively on this year’s leading theme “The Changing Role of the Human Being in an AI-driven Language Service Industry.”

As one of the top 100 Language Service Providers globally, EVS Translations recognises the disruptive trends in AI and responds to the latest shifts in the industry by integrating AI-powered features into its optimised workflow. And as an LSP with an unusual in-house concept and 200 in-house employees, EVS Translations views AI as a technology rather to enhance the productivity of humans than to substitute human professionals in the translation and localisation industry.

Our Head of Marketing Monika Heusel: “When it comes to AI developments, the language industry appears to be on a much higher level when compared to the current needs of the clients. Though the AI technology is not yet fit for purpose on its own, MT developments are expected to drive higher and more diversified translation demand, where the price would be the key factor. We do believe that human translators will keep their central place in the market, facing an increasing demand for specialisation and faster turnaround, supported by machine tools. EVS Translations responded to the new hub economy by developing our own project management platform solutions, but the reality is that most of our corporate clients still prefer the human contact.”

Our Translation Engineer Viktorija Tapai on the Conference’s opening keynote on the consequences of disruptive changes in AI for humans: The speaker Brett Frischmann clearly warned against an all-encompassing digitalisation and automation of our everyday lives and their influence on our personality. He encouraged all participants to “go offline” more often and critically questioned terms such as “in the cloud”.”

Our Head of Translation Technology Jon Flathmann: AI, AI, AI… everyone is talking about it, but most LSPs are still at the very beginning! Some vendors have introduced interesting innovative products and methods, but not many seem to have gotten very far. As I constantly work on improving our own secure closed-systems for neural machine translation with processes conforming to ISO 18587 Post-editing of Machine Translation Output and fulfilling all GDPR specifications, Lilt’s interactive tool that lets human translators edit machine translation outputs in real-time rather than post-editing was one of the highlights for me. The GALA Conference was anything but artificial, with its great atmosphere, face-to-face meetings with partners and associates, openness and inclusion.”

AI was the hottest topic of this year’s GALA Conference, and rather than as a threat, the language services industry should view it as an asset to reduce routine repetitive tasks and enhance human productivity, project management and customer satisfaction.

EVS Translations will keep investing in constant innovation and technology tools to support the work of its 100 in-house translators and proofreaders. We employ translators and they are and will remain at the heart of our unusual and successful business model.