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Sarawak Language Technology (SaLT) Research Group SaLT Initiatives: Preservation and Maintenance of Sarawak Languages Faculty of Computer Science and Information.

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Presentation on theme: "Sarawak Language Technology (SaLT) Research Group SaLT Initiatives: Preservation and Maintenance of Sarawak Languages Faculty of Computer Science and Information."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sarawak Language Technology (SaLT) Research Group SaLT Initiatives: Preservation and Maintenance of Sarawak Languages Faculty of Computer Science and Information Technology Universiti Malaysia Sarawak Associate Professor Alvin W. Yeo

2 Overview Languages in Sarawak Maintenance and Revitalisation: Holistic Approach –Sarawak Language Technology (SaLT) Research Group SaLT Projects –Borneo Corpus Management System (BCMS) –Iban-English Machine Translation TRanslation IBan-English (TRIBE) –Multimodal-INTegration (MINT) of Sketch and Melanau Daro-Matu Speech in Spatial Queries –Speech Language Dialog Systems (SLaDS) –Development of Language Tools Current findings

3 Where are we?

4 East Malaysia> Sarawak> Kuching Kuching

5 Introduction (contd) Sarawak is a state rich in culture. –27 ethnic groups in Sarawak (STB, 2005), each with its own culture and language. –Sarawak has 46 living languages and 1 extinct; according to the Ethnologue (Gordon, 2005) –Each ethnic group may have different languages –Sarawak Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka 63 known languages in Sarawak

6 Rationale PopulationNo. of languagesCumulative no. of languages Cumulative (%) 1– % 101 – % 501 – % 1001 – % 5001 – 10, % 10,001 – 50, % 50,001 – 100, % 100, % Extinct11 No data available11 Cumulative language and number of speakers (Ethnologue,2005)

7 Problem Worlds linguistic and cultural diversity is under threat. –Many minority languages are on the brink of extinction. Minority language communities –Further disadvantaged economically and socially. –Dominant languages –Exogamy Revitalizing minority languages can bring economic and social benefits as well as cultural benefits.

8 Holistic Approach: Framework for Language Revitalization and Maintenance People Preservation of Culture Applications Internet: Online Presence Software applications and operating systems Hardware: Input devices: keyboards, tablets/pen/stylus Supporting Technologies Stakeholders Web techno- logies: Java, Flash Methodologies : engaging communities; development lifecycles Computing Technologies: Natural Language Processing, Image Processing, Speech Recognition and Generation Community/ civil society Research institutions Government agencies NGOs Industry Trainers Translators Linguists IT spec. Comp. Scientists Researchers Social Scientists Communi- ty readiness: ICT literacy Ethnic group organisations …

9 Sarawak Language Technologies (SaLT) Research Group Awareness Understanding Needs Creating awareness Access TrainingComputer literacyHardware/SoftwareTelecommunications Adoption Use technology as is (minor modification) Address needs Adaptation Customisation by stakeholders Customisation by users Technology 4 All: 4AsCommunity-Centred

10 SaLT Role of technology in language maintenance and revitalisation On revitalising and maintaining the existing conventional languages by building corpora, conducting research and developing tools for Sarawak Ethnic Languages. Sarawak Language Technologies (SaLT) Research Group covers Codification of the ethnic languages –Creation of corpora of the various languages in Sarawak Research in computational linguistics projects –which involves languages and peoples of Sarawak Development of tools: word processors, spell checkers

11 Language Technology Understanding and explication of language phenomena in a –computationally tractable form, resulting in –techniques for interchanging various linguistic forms speech, text, morphology, syntax, semantics/meaning, discourse, knowledge, –thus leading to the creation and development of intelligent applications involving language.

12 Levels of Technology INPUT (corpus) APPLICATION (machine translation, multimodal spatial application) PROCESSOR (tagger, parser, multimodal integration) Lexicographer/ Linguist/ comp. scientist Linguist/ comp. scientist General and conceptual dictionary

13 Specialists Needed Lexicographers Computer scientists DBA, SE & N/W (data maintenance & grid) Linguists Information Scientists Psychologists Anthropologists Computational Linguistics Natural Language Processing

14 Current Projects

15 Current Projects (contd)

16 Roadmap for SaLT

17 Advisors and Organisations Involved NoNameExpertiseOrganisation 1Prof. Zaharin YusoffComputational Linguistics (CL) & Natural Language Proc. (NLP) MMU 2.Prof. Ahmad Zaki Abu BakarCL & NLPUTM 3.AP Dr Normaziah Abdul AzizNLP & Artificial IntelligenceUIAM 4.Prof. Dr. Tang Enya KongCL & NLPMMU 5Dr. Bali RanaivoNLP & CLMMU 6.Prof. Dr. Zuraidah Mohd. DonLinguisticsUM 7.Dr. Gerry KnowlesPhonetics and PhonologyMIQUEST Worldwide Sdn Bhd 8.Professor Dr. Peter SonganCommunity developmentUNIMAS

18 Collaborators Organisations Involved 1.Tun Jugah Foundation 2.Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (Sarawak Branch) 3.Melanau Association 4.Dayak Bidayuh National Association 5.Sarawak Museum 6.Pustaka Negeri Sarawak 7.Majlis Adat Istiadat Universities Involved 1.UNIMAS (FCSIT, FCSHD, FSS, CLS) 2.Multimedia University 3.Universiti Teknologi Malaysia 4.Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia 5.Universiti Sains Malaysia 6.Universiti Malaya 7.Localisation Research Centre, University of Limerick, Ireland 8.University of Waikato, New Zealand

19 Team members a. Staff FCSIT AP Dr Alvin Yeo Wee (Head) AP Dr. Narayanan K. Dr Edwin Mit Suhaila Saee Sarah Flora Samson Nurfauza Jali Suriati Khartini Jali Sy. Fazlin Seyed Fadzir Lee Jun Choi FCSHD Dr. Ng Giap Weng Doria Islamiah Wan Norizan CLS Dr. Ting Su Hie Salbia Hassan Yvonne Michelle Campbell

20 Team members (contd) b. Research Assistants 1.Beatrice Chin (FCSIT) 2.Teh Lee Na (FCSIT) 3.Jennifer Wilfred (FCSIT) 4.Lai Nyong Fock (FCSIT) 5.Mohd. Hanafiah Semuni (FCSHD) 6.Loh Chee Wyai (FCSIT) 7.Ang Siaw Tiong (FCSIT) c. Students LevelNo. of Students Post-graduatePhD2 Master by Research6 Master by Coursework5 Undergraduate22 Total35

21 Borneo Corpus Management System (BCMS) Problem/Background: –Currently there is no existing corpus management system to manage corpora available in minority languages of Sarawak Solution: –Build a system that is able to manage and maintain the corpora Objectives: –To design an easy and usable Corpus Processing Toolkit for researchers –Integrate the various tools together in one single platform Current Status: –Working on the Morphological Analysers and Spell Checkers

22 Corpus Manager (After processing) Editable Content Used to highlight the extracted information in the content File tree that display the processed files. The file is stored in the folder based on category Original ContentProcessed Content

23 Corpus Analyser: Sentence Splitter The output is each sentence of current document

24 Iban-Corpus Development Problem/Background –Indigenous languages in Sarawak are slowly dying out due to: –One way to stem this extinction of languages: Provide more local content – but how?? Solution –Translate English documents to documents in minority languages –MT is needed to facilitates and accelerates the translation process Objectives –Identify a methodology that can be used to translate English to minority languages, by taking Iban as a case study Current Status –Built Iban corpus with 23,833 words with 3,831 distinct words –Constructed bilingual lexicon with 1,688 words with 1,192 distinct words

25 Iban-English Machine Translation Problem/Background –Traditional knowledge (TK) is tacit knowledge; generally not stored and known only by the older generation, who speaks little English –TK is very important. It needs to be preserved and protected. –Machine Translation (MT) can help to preserve TK –Translate available resources into English so that it is accessible by all, e.g. researchers (social scientists) and younger generation –However, translation of closely related languages is easier Solution –Translate TK documents to English through a closely related language as pivot language –Case study: Iban as source language, Malay as pivot language and English as target language

26 Objectives –To demonstrate that the performance of translation through a pivot language is comparable with performance of direct translation Realise benefits (efficiency) of translating multiple similar languages through a common pivot language Current Status –Building of Iban corpus and lexicon –Linguistic comparison on Iban and Malay language


28 Multimodal Integration: Preamble User sketching on the Wacom tablet with CogSketch sketch interface describing a place. Dragon Naturally Speaking software for capturing the speech with a microphone.

29 Multimodal Integration of Sketch and Melanau Daro-Matu Speech in Spatial Queries (MINT) Problem/Background –English: main communication medium –Language is unique and distinct Individual uses different languages may have different approaches in conceptualizing, communicating, reasoning, expressing their thoughts –Translation is not sufficient enough –Building the entire system for certain targeted speakers is time consuming Solution –Internationalisation (i18n) –Localisation (l10n)

30 Objectives –Integrate Melanau Daro-Matu speech and sketch (image) modalities –Identify the interaction patterns of Melanau users. –Identify the similarities and difference of English, Malay and Melanau (extending to Iban as well) –Localise architecture and representation of multimodal integration in Melanau Daro-Matu, and other languages

31 Input Capturing Input Interpretation Modalities Representation Speech Representation Sketch Interpretation Sketch Speech Interpretation Part-Of-Speech Tagging Language-Dependent Components Tokenization Tagging using trained corpus Tagging corrections acquired from templates Lexicon required Grammar rules required Annotated Text Spatial information retrieval Speech Sketch Representation Modalities Integration Sketch and Speech Integration Database Searching Sentence Splitter Transcription

32 Spoken Language Dialogue System (SLaDS) Problem/Background –Spoken language system (SLS) has become an ever-increasing human-system interface. –Many studies have been conducted by foreign researchers to unravel the challenge in the design of spoken language system. –This study focuses on the design and development of spoken language dialogue system within the context of Malaysian user. Solution –The project is performed by conducting a simulation test of the real SLS system with local user. –The system is then evaluated by adopting the Wizard of Oz method with the objectives to determine its efficacy. –The result of this testing will be useful for the future development of Malaysian SLS.

33 Objectives –To investigate the spoken language and interaction design, and its employment in the development of Spoken Language Dialog Systems –To determine the efficacy of imported usability evaluation techniques applied in the Spoken Language Dialogue Systems –Identify speech patterns to develop a predictive model for speech recognition Current Status –To date, the study is already in its testing stage to capture the dialogue content. –Respondent is prompt to interact with the system. –The dialogue from the interaction will be taped, transcribed and analysed.

34 Wizards Control Panel Users view SCREENSHOTSVIDEO Video showing interaction sample;

35 Research Projects: Fundamental Research Grant Minority Languages Online (MiLO): Preserving Cultures by Mobilising Minority Languages (of Sarawak) Online. (completed 30 June 2007) –Continued with CLS, Univ. of Waikato –Wikipedia approach to development of Bidayuh lexicon Bario Lakuh Digital Library (completed) –Recordings of Kelabit songs –Transcibed, translated –With audio and video

36 e-Vocabulary for Sarawak Malay Problems: Language endangerment Vocabulary of Sarawak Malay (Original source) Main source: Vocabulary book written by W.S.B.BUCK from Bau, which was published by Sarawak Civil Service on 11th May, Total of word entries: 1026 words

37 Background One of the most widely used computer application nowadays is the word processor. Open Source Software (OSS): can used, studied, and redistributed in modified or unmodified form without restriction Solution/Objectives AbiWord (comprehensive word processor) to be localised To identify the processes of translation of computing terminology AbiWord in Local Languages

38 Current Status: TaskProgress Data collection: Template Ongoing Interface: Toolbar Menu Submenu Icon Tooltips Operation Completed Ongoing Running

39 Screen shots Interface Example of Menu Panel

40 Current Findings: Challenges Resources of some languages available –Generally lacking; data collection very challenging Writing systems and grammar rules do not exist Lack of human resources –Fluent in the (untainted) form (translating, POS tagging)

41 Current Findings: Bright future Community Awareness –Associations of ethnic groups aware of need –Advanced in age interested, younger generation not so Protocol followed –Upper management support required to open doors Local researchers are interested –Colleagues & students Machine translation, speech to text, text to speech Development of speech corpus

42 Multi-ethnic Group

43 Concluding Remarks Decreasing number of speakers of languages in Sarawak Maintenance and Revitalisation: Holistic Approach –Sarawak Language Technology (SaLT) Research Group SaLT Projects –Machine translation, multimodal integration, speech language dialog system, corpus management systems, online dictionaries/repositories, digital libraries Challenges: community involvement and data collection and analysis Silver lining: committed NGOs and researchers Internationalisation and localisation approach

44 Acknowledgements Institutional support from –Universiti Malaysia Sarawak –Jugah Foundation, Melanau Association, Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (Sarawak Branch), Majlis Adat Istiadat, Dayak Bidayuh National Association Financial Support grants –UNIMAS Fundamental Research Grant Scheme –Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Science Fund Grant Scheme ( SF0028, SF0029, SF0030)

45 Fifth International Cyberspace Conference on Ergonomics (CybErg 2008) –Theme: Local knowledge, Global Applications –Special Discussion on Maintenance and Preservation of Languages –On-going 15 Sept – 15 Oct 2008 –Free Registration –

46 Sixth International Conference on IT In Asia (CITA09) Theme: Enabling technologies for Knowledge-driven Society: People-Powered Systems Tracks on Computational Linguistics, Human Computer Interaction, Software Engineering Kuching, Malaysia, 6- 9 July 2009; Rainforest Music Festival

47 Thank You Terima Kasih Jian Kenin

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