May 9, 2009
Center for Computational Engineering and Networking, Coimbatore
Amrita partners with IIT Bombay and other universities for a new project funded by the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD).
“The main objective is to develop a Machine Translation (MT) system and the needed linguistic resources for translation from English to South Indian languages such as Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada,” stated Dr. Soman, Director of the Center for Computational Engineering and Networking in Coimbatore, who will lead the Amrita team. “This would facilitate the creation of rich educational content in Indian languages as well.”
The project is divided into three modules.
In Module 1, open-source machine learning tools (including ones developed at Amrita) will be made available, so that more computer professionals can participate by contributing additional tools for language translation.
In Module 2, teaching material will be developed that can be used in undergraduate computer science and engineering curriculum around the country on data mining and machine learning.
“IIT Bombay has developed a Hindi Wordnet that is being widely used for Natural Language Processing,” further explained Dr. Soman. In Module 3, a similar Wordnet will be developed for the South Indian languages.”
Tamil University in Tanjore, Dravidian University in Kuppam and Central University in Hyderabad will also participate. Hundreds of faculty members chosen from educational institutions around the country will be trained on machine translation methodologies and machine learning techniques. The total worth of the project is Rs 1 crore.
“MHRD is expecting this project to help the national mission on literacy and national mission on education in a big way,” said Dr. Venkat Rangan, Vice-Chancellor of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, who guided Amrita’s proposal-writing process. “We are happy to have this opportunity to contribute. We look forward to working with our partners on this momentous task.”