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META-NORD - Baltic and Nordic Parts of the European Open Linguistic Infrastructure

270899 - Pilot B

 

 

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At a glance

PSP -2009.6.1 - Open linguistic infrastructure

Challenge

In the last decade linguistic resources have grown rapidly for all EU languages, including lesser-resourced languages. However they are located in different places, have developed in different standards and in many cases are not well documented. Currently users can conveniently benefit only from a very limited number of publicly available resources for commercial or non-commercial purposes. It is difficult or in many cases impossible to get access to resources that are scattered around different places, are not accessible online, reside within research institutions and companies. Many resources are in proprietary formats or have proprietary interfaces that further hinder their broader usage. High fragmentation and a lack of unified access to language resources are among key factors that hinder European innovation potential in language technology development and research.

Proposed Solution

The META-NORD project aims to establish an open lnguistic infrastructure in the Baltic and Nordic countries to serve the needs of the industry and research communities. The project will focus on 8 European languages - Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian and Swedish - that each have less than 10 million speakers. The project will assemble, link across languages, and make widely available language resources of different types used by different categories of user communities in academia and industry to create products and applications that facilitate linguistic diversity in the EU.

Project Objectives

The main objectives of the META-NORD project are:

  • to provide a description of the national (resp. language community) landscape in terms of language use; language-savvy products and services, language technologies and resources; main actors (research, industry, government and society); public policies and programmes; prevailing standards and practices; current level of development, main drivers and roadblocks; and create this in a simple, clear, standardised format;
  • to contribute to a pan-European digital resource exchange facility by identifying, collecting resources in the Baltic and Nordic countries and by documenting, processing, linking and upgrading them to agreed standards and guidelines;
  • to collaborate with other partner projects, in particular the META-NET network of excellence. Co-operation with other relevant multi-national forums or activities, e.g., FlaReNet, CLARIN, will ensure consistent approaches practices and standards aimed at ensuring a wider accessibility of and easier access and reuse of quality language resources;
  • to help build and operate broad, non-commercial, community-driven, inter-connected repositories, exchanges, and facilities that will be used by different categories of target user communities;
  • to mobilise national and regional actors, public bodies and funding agencies by raising awareness, organising meetings and other focused events.

Specific Targets

Besides general objectives META-NORD has set several specific targets:

  • to provide expertise to other pilots in fields where META-NORD partners have outstanding expertise: treebanks/syntax databases, terminology resources, wordnets and finite-state techniques;
  • to develop and document methodologies for building language resources for the so-called under-resourced languages (i.e. languages with limited language resources) as efficiently as possible, with focus on semi-automatic/machine assisted resource generation;
  • to facilitate availability of BLARK resources for META-NORD languages (Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian and Swedish);
  • to facilitate knowledge transfer between CLARIN and META-NORD, especially on standards and intellectual property rights (IPR) issues.

Target Users

The target users are developers and researchers both in industry and academia. This includes private and public institutions, companies and individuals involved in HLT research and development: industrial organisations and SMEs, academic institutions, research organisations, universities, individual researchers and students, national governments, EC institutions and private investors.

Co-operation

META-NORD will tightly co-operate and co-ordinate its activities with other ICT-PSP projects and META-NET network of excellence to ensure a coherent pan-European open linguistic infrastructure that will efficiently serve the needs of European industry and reseah comunities for multilingual resources.

Co-ordinator

Contact Person:

Name: Aivars Berzins

Tel: 00371 6760 5001

Fax: 00371 676 5750

E-mail: aivars.berzins@tilde.lv

Organisation: Tilde

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