What’s New in Highlight 7.2

This latest version of Highlight has significant enhancements for government linguists and translators that use this Microsoft Office plug-in to translate and standardize names between English and non-Latin languages—Arabic, Dari, Farsi, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Pashto, and Russian.

Speed Improvements

In some languages, Highlight can translate names up to three times faster than in version 7.1. The speed improvement is particularly significant for Korean.

To put this into perspective, translating 10,000 names in MS Excel to the Intelligence Community (IC) transliteration standard takes:

  • At least 24 hours without Highlight
  • 2 hours if using Highlight 7.2 in interactive mode—where a translator checks every translated name
  • 13 minutes if using Highlight 7.2 in automatic mode (That’s 13 minutes from application launch to outputting the translated name list to an Excel spreadsheet.)

Highlight Korean Example

In Excel, Highlight reduces the tedium of translating thousands of names. While a person takes a little over 8 seconds to translate a name, in automatic mode, Highlight translates a name every 8/100ths of a second!

Translate Once, Reuse Many Times

Some names may appear multiple times across documents. A new feature in Highlight 7.2 enables translators to reuse checked translations—like translation memory just for names—thus saving labor. The ability to reuse translations means consistency of spellings are greater especially when the approved translation does not follow the transliteration standard. Having a reusable list of translations also lets linguists more easily link translated documents that mention a particular person, place, or organization to a knowledgebase of such entities.

Highlight Russian Example

Working in interactive mode, a dialog box pops up with suggested translations. The suggestions in the upper table are in the IC Transliteration Standard and names in the lower table are from the CIA Chief’s of State database, “CoS.”

How does this work? Highlight 7.2 allows a Highlight administrator (such as the manager of a group of linguists)  to create his or her own Custom Entity Database of standardized names from an Excel spreadsheet. On a client-server setup, that database of approved name translations is accessible by all the manager’s linguists. Furthermore, names in large bodies of text can be linked to entities in a central, customizable database. Administrators can continually add new names to custom databases from text in Word or Excel, to promote  translation standardization and entity linking.

If you are ready to speed up translation in these complex languages, request a free product evaluation of Highlight. U.S. government employees can contact Jennifer Flather, Highlight Program Manager, DIA, at 800-697-2062 or jennifer.flather@dodiis.mil, for a free copy.

Highlight 7.2 supports Microsoft Office 2007, 2010, and 2013.