Speech Translation Research at SRI International
Bilingual Phrase Translation System (BPTS)
SRI's next-generation translation systems are bilingual---they perform bidirectional,
translation between English and another language. The bilingual translation software can run
on ruggedized Phraselator or standard commercial, off-the-shelf hardware, such as a laptop
The bilingual phrase translation system (BPTS) matches spoken input phrases to
prerecorded translations which are played through a speaker.
The non-English speaker is then prompted to say
one of a set of expected responses, which is translated into
The BPTS also has the capability to spot unexpected words
requiring urgent attention, such as "Help! We need a doctor!"
The BPTS is designed supplement human translators in situations where
the information to be exchanged is fairly constrained and
predictable within some range of variability.
The systems are best used for asymmetric dialog, where the
English speaker directs the conversation.
History of BPTS
SRI began work on BPTS in
late 2001. We have given evaluation copies to AFRL, ARL, NRL, USMA,
Army Rapid Equipping Forces, and CERDEC, and the system was
tested in the CARE04 exercise.
Our original bilingual translation system was developed for the
Pashto language, spoken in
Afghanistan, and we are currently adapting it to Filipino (Tagalog).