The MuTUAL Project

MuTUAL (Municipal Text multilingUALisation) is a Web-based authoring support system, designed to help non-professional writers create multilingual texts that define municipal procedures to be followed by local residents. Given their limited budgets for hiring translators or post-editors, Japanese municipalities typically rely solely on machine translation (MT) to disseminate their website content in multiple languages. However, MT between languages with as greatly differing structures as Japanese and English is still of generally poor performance. In addition, our previous investigation into the effectiveness of Japanese controlled language (CL) rules revealed that sentence-level control over source texts is not enough to significantly improve MT performance (Hartley et al., 2012; Tatsumi et al., 2013). To be effective, CL rules require to be contextualised at document level (Hartley, 2010), which is what we have undertaken.

The principal novel feature of MuTUAL is that it makes use of document structuring based on the Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) framework (OASIS, 2010) and defines fine-grained context-dependent CL rules which consequently enable MT to generate outputs appropriate to their functional context within the target document.