Transitioning entirely to neural machine translation

Language translation is one of the ways we can give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together. It can help people connect with family members who live overseas, or better understand the perspective of someone who speaks a different language. We use machine translation to translate text in posts and comments automatically, in order to break language barriers and allow people around the world to communicate with each other. Creating seamless, highly accurate translation experiences for the 2 billion people who use Facebook is difficult. We need to account for context, slang, typos, abbreviations, and intent simultaneously. To continue improving the quality of our translations, we recently switched from using phrase-based machine translation models to neural networks to power all of our backend translation systems, which account for more than 2,000 translation directions and 4.5 billion translations each day. These new models provide more accurate and fluent translations, improving people’s experience consuming Facebook content that is not written in their preferred language.”

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