Learning from Europe

Two of the LVL team, Jón and Anna, are working on a strategic plan for Icelandic language technology, together with Steinþór Steingrímsson from The Árni Magnússon Institute of Icelandic Studies. The three of them have been – and will be – meeting LT specialists in Europe to learn about successful technologies and to collect material for the strategic planning. February 15th to 17th they went from seeing Etienne Roth from EPC in Mannheim, Germany, on spell and grammar checking, to Luxembourg to speak with the machine translation team of MT@EC and over to London to meet speech synthesis specialists at Google. A lot of nice, clever and helpful people they met there! While digesting the mass-input of these three days, the preparations for the next trips are already ongoing: Estonia on the 1st of March and Gothenburg, Sweden, later the same month.

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Szymon Klocek, Markus Foti, Jón Guðnason, Steinþór Steingrímsson, Michael Jellinghaus and Andreas Eisele at EC in Luxembourg

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Jón at the Goodenough House, where he lived while studying in London “some” years ago

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View from the 11th floor, Jón and Steinþór together with Oddur Kjartansson at Google, London

 

The future of Icelandic

The event “Educational day 2017”, organised by SA-Business Iceland on February 2nd, focussed on the  Icelandic language and language technology. Leading persons from academia, industry, politics, and culture spoke with enthusiasm about the role and future of Icelandic and the chances within language technology. The president of Iceland, Mr. Guðni Th. Jóhannesson (whose name posed a challenge to the pronunciation talent of Amazon’s Alexa), also honoured the meeting and professed great optimism for the Icelandic language and LT. As did our representative from LVL, Jón had a talk on speech recognition, “Speaking Icelandic to computers”.

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