Jesús Aguilar López
Title: Verbal Language to Irish Sign Language Machine Translation: A Linguistically Informed Approach
Description: Machine translation (MT) of verbal language (speech/text) has garnered widespread attention over the past 60 years. On the other hand, computational processing of signed language has unfortunately not received nearly as much attention, resulting in its exclusion from modern language technologies. This exclusion, leaves deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals at a disadvantage, aggravating the human-to-human communication barrier, while suppressing an already under resourced set of languages further for the estimated 72 million deaf people in the world. This aim of this project is to develop a linguistically motivated sign language machine translation (SLMT) avatar that will translate between English (text/speech) and Irish Sign Language (ISL). The project will focus, in particular, on current linguistic and technical challenges in relation the computational modelling and processing of sign language. This will involve research in sign language linguistics, computational linguistics, natural language processing and virtual character animation.