Microsoft says its software can translate news stories as well as a human can
Microsoft breakthrough comes as China tries to build bots that can write news
It’s potentially an enormous breakthrough. AI has been used to drive cars, and has proven better than humans at playing strategy board games like Go. But natural language was seen as one of the toughest tasks for computers to emulate.
Microsoft says it hopes to apply this breakthrough to its commercial products. But it’s worth noting that it’s still early. They’re only announced human parity in Chinese to English, for instance, and only on a test set of stories.
But Microsoft’s breakthrough in translating news comes as Chinese companies are investing big in AI -- including bots that can write news stories by themselves.
“It’s not just language skills,” says Yang Yang, who works for one of the largest English language newspapers in China. “Being a good reporter, you need to experience, feel and even smell."