Tilde’s ENG-ET-ENG machine translation systems have achieved the highest score in WMT2018 – the global Olympics for MT researchers and developers! Following our last year’s success in WMT2017 we’re again tremendously proud about our R&D team. This is also a marked success for Estonian language machine translation, as this language has been underrepresented in MT. At least until now!
Translation quality achieved by Tilde MT system surpassed other contenders, including the publicly available MT systems from such strong players in the global MT market as Google, Microsoft and Yandex. MT systems were compared both by human experts and by using automatic comparison between machine and human translated text. When compared to a translation done by professional translators, Tilde MT achieved an impressive 64.9% similarity, whilst Google Translate - 52.1%. It's useful to note that fully identical translations aren't possible even by two highly skilled human translators.
The inception for Tilde's Estonian neural MT systems was in 2016 when the Estonian Ministry of Education supported Tilde research to find out how the new MT technologies would be applicable for Estonian language. At first the MT system was used with great success for the Estonian presidency of the Council of EU. Currently Tilde has concluded providing MT services for presiding country trio of Estonia, Bulgaria and Austria and seeks to continue its success further with the next three EU Council presidencies.
Whilst WMT2018 is purely a “for researchers, by researchers” event, the resulting MT tools are already available on our website for everyone to try out. Usual MT quality disclaimers aside, it is currently the best ENG-ET-ENG MT in the world. We hope that Estonians will use it to access a multitude of information and what’s more – let their English-speaking friends access content in Estonian. This is also good news for business coming to the Baltics and local Estonian businesses looking to conquer the world.