Six months ago, Meta launched the ambitious No Language Left Behind project to create artificial intelligence that can translate text between different pairs of languages without resorting to English as an intermediary. Yesterday the company presented the first such model NLLB-200: it speaks 200 languages of the world, including rare languages of Asia and Africa, says Engadget.
On the FLORES-101 benchmark for AI language models, it outperforms the best modern counterparts by an average of 44%, and by 70% in some African and Indian dialects. In total, the NLLB-200 translates “at a high level” from/to 55 African languages, says Dev.
The NLLB-200 code is published on GitHub. The research work is posted here, and you can test the model on this demo site.
According to the developers, the Wikipedia editors are already using the model to translate articles. In addition, Meta is going to give away $200,000 in grants to non-profit organizations to develop ways to apply the technology in the real world, notes NIX Solutions.