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Published on Jun 14, 2012

Prof. Dr. Alex Waibel | Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Anthropomatics, Interactive Systems Labs

University without Language Barriers
Introducing the First Simultaneous Translation Service by Computer -- Simultaneous Speech Translation

In an increasingly mobile and global world, universities are faced with the problem of language barriers like never before. Should a German university switch to English, or must all students learn German before enrolling? On June 11th, we will unveil a third solution: the world's first automatic simultaneous translation service at a university. The lecture translator automatically records, transcribes and translates the speech of a lecturer in real time, and students can follow the lecture in their own language on their PC or mobile phone. We will show the service in operation in a lecture given in German with English output. While not always perfect, the lecture translator represents a cost effective way to assist foreign students in their academic pursuits despite language barriers.

The German lecture translator service builds on two decades of research at the International Center for Advanced Communication Technologies at KIT and its academic and commercial partners. Support from the European Commission and the German Excellence Initiative are gratefully acknowledged.

Prof. Dr. Alex Waibel:

Produktion: KIT WebCast |


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