Monday, April 18, 2016

LDC April 2016 Newsletter

New publications:

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New Corpora

(1) H1 Children's Writing was developed by the Cooperative State University Baden-WürttembergUniversity of Education. It consists of 996 texts written over three months by 88 German school children age seven through eleven years.

Texts were written within regular class settings. The students were presented with a picture and were asked to write a story, to describe the picture or if unable to write a text, to list what they saw in the picture. The pictures were designed to enhance the output with respect to important spelling error categories, namely, the marking of short vowels with a silent consonant letter and the correct spelling of the long vowel. The children were allowed at least 15 minutes to write the texts. This exercise was repeated weekly for 12 weeks.

Most of the participants were multilingual. The metadata with this releases includes: school week of collection; school type (always elementary school); age; gender; grade/classroom; language spoken at home; and school materials used for German (Jojo).

In all, 996 texts representing 62,764 tokens were collected. The texts were digitized in two forms: (1) the original text, including all errors (achieved), and (2) the intended (target) text, where all spelling errors were removed. Annotations were added to both the achieved text and the target text to distinguish words that should not be analyzed for spelling errors, such as names or foreign words. For sentence-level analysis, syntax errors were annotated by marking substitutions, deletions and insertions at the word level. In such cases, the used word was analyzed for spelling, and the correct word was used for sentence structure analysis.

Original handwriting is presented as pdf documents and the converted text as UTF-8 plain text in csv documents.

H1 Children's Writing is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(2) GALE Phase 4 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Parallel Sentences was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phase 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Modern Standard Arabic source sentences and corresponding English translations selected from broadcast conversation data collected by LDC in 2007 and 2008 and transcribed and translated by LDC or under its direction.

The data includes 170 source-translation document pairs, comprising 44,064 words (Arabic source) of translated data. Data is drawn from 45 distinct Arabic broadcast conversation sources.

GALE Phase 4 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Parallel Sentences is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) HAVIC Pilot Transcription was developed by LDC and is comprised of approximately 72 hours of user-generated videos with transcripts based on the English speech audio extracted from the videos. This data set was created in collaboration with NIST (the National Institute of Standards and Technology) as part of the HAVIC (the Heterogeneous Audio Visual Internet Collection) project, the goal of which is to advance multimodal event detection and related technologies.

LDC has developed a large, heterogeneous, annotated multimodal corpus for HAVIC that has been used in the NIST-sponsored MED (Multimedia Event Detection) task for several years. HAVIC Pilot Transcription supported an experiment to produce a verbatim transcript (quick and rich transcription) based on audio extracted from user-generated videos. It contains the pilot transcripts for selected MED 2011 video files as well as the associated videos.

Annotators generated the transcripts using XTrans, which supports manual transcription across multiple channels, languages and platforms. HAVIC transcription guidelines are included in the documentation for this release. All transcription files are in .tdf format, a plain-text, flat-table format with 13 tab-delimited fields. All video files are in .mp4 format (h264), with varying bit-rates and levels of audio fidelity and video resolution.

HAVIC Pilot Transcription is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

LDC March 2016 Newsletter

New publications:

GALE Phase 3 and 4 Arabic Web Parallel Text 
GALE Phase 3 and 4 Chinese Broadcast Conversation Parallel Text
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New Corpora
(1) DEFT Narrative Text was developed by LDC and contains proxy reports and their source newswire used to support DARPA's Deep Exploration and Filtering of Text (DEFT) program. One of the goals of the DEFT program was to develop technologies that can perform various NLP tasks on data in a variety of genres, both formal and informal.

LDC provided source data and annotations for DEFT system development. DEFT Narrative Text consists of "proxy reports" (and "multi-proxy reports") in English. (Multi-)proxy reports are intended to mimic the format and other features of some types of government analyst reports using content from newswire articles. The corresponding English newswire source documents are also included in the release.

LDC staff manually selected the source newswire from English Gigaword Fifth Edition (LDC2011T07).

The newswire source documents are XML files following the Gigaword corpus format. The proxy reports are in plain text format.

DEFT Narrative Text is distributed via web download.
2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(2) GALEPhase 3 and 4 Arabic Web Parallel Text was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phases 3 and 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Modern Standard Arabic source text and corresponding English translations selected from weblog and newsgroup data collected by LDC and translated by LDC or under its direction.

The data includes 124 source-translation document pairs, comprising 61,662 tokens of Arabic source text and its English translation. Data is drawn from four various Arabic weblog and newsgroup sources.

GALE Phase 3 and 4 Arabic Web Parallel Text is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) GALEPhase 3 and 4 Chinese Broadcast Conversation Parallel Text was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phases 3 and 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Chinese source text and corresponding English translations selected from broadcast conversation data collected by LDC between 2006 and 2008 and transcribed and translated by LDC or under its direction.

This data includes 63 source-translation document pairs, comprising 487,466 tokens of Chinese source text and its English translation. Data is drawn from 19 distinct Chinese programs broadcast between 2006 and 2008.

Data was manually selected for translation according to several criteria, including linguistic features, transcription features and topic features. The transcribed and segmented files were then reformatted into a human-readable translation format and assigned to translation vendors. Translators followed LDC's Chinese to English translation guidelines. Bilingual LDC staff performed quality control procedures on the completed translations.

GALE Phase 3 and 4 Chinese Broadcast Conversation Parallel Text is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

Monday, February 15, 2016

LDC 2016 February Newsletter

­­­­­­­­­­­­­Only two weeks left to enjoy 2016 membership savings

Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship recipients

How to Share Data through LDC webinar on YouTube

New publications:
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Only two weeks left to enjoy 2016 membership savings
There’s still time to save on 2016 membership fees. Now through March 1, all organizations receive a 5% discount when they join for MY2016. MY2015 members are eligible for an additional 5% off the fee (10% total savings) when they renew before March 1.  

To join, create or sign into your LDC user account, select your preferred membership type from the Catalog, add the item to your bin and follow the check-out process. The Membership Office will apply any discounts. Alternatively, if you have already received a renewal invoice from LDC, you can simply pay against that.

For more information on the benefits of membership, visit Join LDC.

Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship recipients
Congratulations to the recipients of LDC's Spring 2016 data scholarships:

Shefali Waldekar: Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (India), PhD Candidate, Electronics and Electrical Communications Engineering. Shefali is awarded copies of 2002 Rich Transcription Broadcast News and Conversational Telephone Speech and 2005 Spring NIST Rich Transcription (RT05-S) Evaluation Set for her research in audio diarization.

Nikola Invanov Nikolov: University of Zurich and ETH Zurich (Switzerland), MSc candidate in Informatics. Nikola is awarded a copy of Annotated English Gigaword for his research in text summarization.

Om Prakash Singh: Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati (India), Research scholar in spoken language identification. Om is awarded a copy of NIST Language Recognition Evaluation Test Set for his work in language identification.

Moshen Mohammadi: Iranian Research Institute for Electrical Engineering (Iran), PhD Candidate in Communications. Moshen is awarded copies of the 2008 NIST Speaker Recognition Evaluation Training Sets 1 and 2, the Evaluation Test Set and the Supplemental Set for his work in speaker recognition in noisy environments.

For program information visit the Data Scholarship page.

How to Share Data through LDC webinar on YouTube
LDC’s first webinar, How to Share Data through LDC, is now available for viewing on our YouTube page. Presented live on January 22, 2016, the webinar outlined in easy steps the process for submitting language resources to LDC for publication in the Catalog. In addition, discussion topics included the benefits of sharing data through LDC, the corpus life cycle, data delivery, quality control and more.

New Corpora
(1) BOLT Chinese Discussion Forums was developed by LDC and consists of 1,597,500 discussion forum threads in Chinese harvested from the Internet using a combination of manual and automatic processes.

The DARPA BOLT (Broad Operational Language Translation) program developed machine translation and information retrieval for less formal genres, focusing particularly on user-generated content. LDC supported the BOLT program by collecting informal data sources -- discussion forums, text messaging and chat -- in Chinese, Egyptian Arabic and English. The collected data was translated and annotated for various tasks including word alignment, treebanking, propbanking and co-reference. The material in this release represents the Chinese source data in the discussion forum genre.

Collection was seeded based on the results of manual data scouting by native speaker annotators. When multiple threads from a forum were submitted, the entire forum was automatically harvested and added to the collection. The scale of the collection precluded manual review of all data. Only a small portion of the threads included in this release were manually reviewed, and it is expected that there may be some offensive or otherwise undesired content as well as some threads that contain a large amount of non-Chinese content. Language identification was performed on all threads in this corpus (using CLD2), and threads for which the results indicated a high probability of largely non-Chinese content are identified in this release.

BOLT Chinese Discussion Forums is distributed via web download as a multi-part zip file. Consult the Using LDC Data page (https://www.ldc.upenn.edu/data-management/using) for more information about this format.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(2) GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Speech Part 2 was developed by LDC and is comprised of approximately 129 hours of Arabic broadcast conversation speech collected in 2007 and 2008 by LDC, MediaNet, Tunis, Tunisia and MTC, Rabat, Morocco during Phase 3 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) program.

Corresponding transcripts are released as GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Transcripts Part 2 (LDC2016T06).

These broadcast conversation recordings feature interviews, call-in programs and roundtable discussions focusing principally on current events and are contained in 142 audio files presented in FLAC-compressed Waveform Audio File format (.flac), 16000 Hz single-channel 16-bit PCM. Each file was audited by a native Arabic speaker following Audit Procedure Specification Version 2.0 which is included in this release.

GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Speech Part 2 is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Transcripts Part 2 was developed by LDC and contains transcriptions of approximately 129 hours of Arabic broadcast conversation speech collected in 2007 and 2008 by LDC, MediaNet, Tunis, Tunisia and MTC, Rabat, Morocco during Phase 3 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) program.

Corresponding audio data is released as GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Speech Part 2 (LDC2016S01).

The transcript files are in plain-text, tab-delimited format (TDF) with UTF-8 encoding, and the transcribed data totals 845,791 tokens. The transcripts were created with the LDC tool, XTrans, which supports manual transcription and annotation of audio recordings.

The files in this corpus were transcribed by LDC staff and/or by transcription vendors under contract to LDC. Transcribers followed LDC's quick transcription guidelines (QTR) and quick rich transcription specification (QRTR) both of which are included in the documentation with this release.

GALE Phase 3 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Transcripts Part 2 is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.


Thursday, January 21, 2016

LDC 2016 January Newsletter

CFP for LREC 2016 Novel Incentives Workshop

LDC Membership Discounts for MY 2016 Still Available

New publications:
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CFP for LREC 2016 Novel Incentives Workshop
The first workshop on novel incentives in linguistic data collection will take place on May 28, 2016 in conjunction with the Tenth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC2016) in Portoroz, Slovenia.

Novel Incentives for Collecting Linguistic Data and Annotation from People: types, implementation, tasking requirements, workflow and results, opens the discussion on incentives in data collection describing novel approaches and comparing traditional monetary incentives.

The workshop is accepting papers through February 6, 2016. For more information visit the workshop webpage.


LDC Membership Discounts for MY 2016 Still Available
If you are considering joining LDC for Membership Year 2016 (MY2016), there is still time to save on membership fees.  Any organization which joins or renews membership for 2016 through March 1, 2016, is entitled to a 5% discount on membership fees.  Organizations which held membership for MY2015 can receive a 10% discount on fees provided they renew prior to March 1, 2016. Publications planned for release in 2016 include multilingual language packs, BOLT discussion forum and DEFT narrative text corpora, HAVIC video clips and transcripts and the latest Arabic and Chinese treebanks.

New publications
(1) Arabic Treebank - Weblog was developed by LDC and consists of Arabic weblog data with part-of-speech, morphology, gloss and syntactic tree annotation.

The ongoing Penn Arabic Treebank Project (PATB) supports research in Arabic-language natural language processing and human language technology development. Generally, the PATB consists of two distinct phases: (a) part-of-speech (POS) tagging, which divides the text into lexical tokens and gives relevant information about each token such as lexical category, inflectional features, and a gloss (referred to as POS for convenience, although it includes morphological and gloss information not traditionally included with part-of-speech annotation), and (b) Arabic treebanking, which characterizes the constituent structures of word sequences, provides categories for each non-terminal node, and identifies null elements, co-reference, traces and so on.

The data contains 243,117 source tokens before clitics were split, and 308,996 tree tokens after clitics were separated for treebank annotation. The source material is weblogs collected by LDC from various sources.

Arabic Treebank - Weblog is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(2) NewSoMe Corpus of Opinion in Blogs was compiled at Barcelona Media and consists of English and Spanish blogs annotated for opinions. It is part of the NewSoMe (News and Social Media) set of corpora presenting opinion annotations across several genres and covering multiple languages. NewSoMe is the result of an effort to build a unifying annotation framework for analyzing opinion in different genres, ranging from controlled text, such as news reports, to diverse types of user-generated content that includes blogs, product reviews and microblogs.

LDC has also released NewSoMe Corpus of Opinion in News Reports (LDC2015T17).

The data consists of 108 English documents and 191 Spanish documents. The annotation was carried out manually through the crowdsourcing platform CrowdFlower with seven annotations per layer that were aggregated for this data set. The layers annotated were topic, segment, cue, subjectivity, polarity and intensity.


NewSoMe Corpus of Opinion in Blogs is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) GALE Phase 4 Chinese Weblog Parallel Sentences was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phase 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Chinese source sentences and corresponding English translations selected from newsgroup and weblog data collected by LDC and translated by LDC or under its direction.

GALE Phase 4 Chinese Weblog Parallel Sentences includes 231 source-translation document pairs, comprising 92,501 tokens of Chinese source text and its English translation.

Sentences were selected for translation in two steps. First, files were chosen using sentence selection scripts provided by GALE program participants SRI International and IBM. The output was then manually reviewed by LDC staff to eliminate problematic sentences. Selected files were reformatted into a human-readable translation format and assigned to translation vendors. Translators followed LDC's Chinese to English translation guidelines and were provided with the full source documents containing the target sentences for their reference. Bilingual LDC staff performed quality control procedures on the completed translations.


GALE Phase 4 Chinese Weblog Parallel Sentences is distributed via web download.

2016 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2016 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

LDC 2015 December Newsletter

Renew your LDC membership today

Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship Program - deadline approaching

LDC at LSA 2016

LDC to close for Winter Break

New publications
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Renew your LDC membership today
Membership Year 2016 (MY2016) discounts are available for those who keep their membership current and join early in the year. Check here for further information including our planned publications for MY2016.

Now is also a good time to consider joining LDC for the current and open membership years, MY2015 and MY2014.  MY2015 includes data such as RATS Speech Activity Detection and updates to Penn Treebank. MY2014 remains open through the end of the 2015 calendar year and its publications include UN speech data, 2009 NIST LRE test set, 2007 ACE multilingual data, and multi-channel WSJ audio. For full descriptions of these data sets, visit our Catalog.

Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship Program - deadline approaching
The deadline for the Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship Program is right around the corner! Student applications are being accepted now through January 15, 2016, 11:59PM EST. The LDC Data Scholarship program provides university students with access to LDC data at no cost. This program is open to students pursuing both undergraduate and graduate studies in an accredited college or university. LDC Data Scholarships are not restricted to any particular field of study; however, students must demonstrate a well-developed research agenda and a bona fide inability to pay.

Students will need to complete an application which consists of a data use proposal and letter of support from their adviser. For further information on application materials and program rules, please visit the LDC Data Scholarship page.

Students can email their applications to the LDC Data Scholarships program. Decisions will be sent by email from the same address.

LDC at LSA 2016
LDC will be exhibiting at the Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America, held January 7-10, 2016 in Washington, DC. Stop by booth 110 to learn more about recent developments at the Consortium and new publications. Also, be on the lookout for the following presentations:

Satellite Workshop: Preparing Your Corpus for Archival Storage
Malcah Yaeger-Dror (University of Arizona) and Christopher Cieri (LDC)
Thursday, January 7, 2016 - 8:00am to 3:00pm, Salon 4

Broadening connections among researchers in linguistics and human language technologies
Jeff Good (University at Buffalo) and Christopher Cieri (LDC)
Friday, January 8, 2016 - 7:30am to 9:00am, Salon 1

Diachronic development of pitch contrast in Seoul Korean
Sunghye Cho (UPenn), Yong-cheol Lee (Cheongju University) and Mark Liberman (LDC)
Friday, January 8, 2016 - 2:00pm to 5:00pm, Salon 1

LDC will post conference updates via our Twitter feed and Facebook page. We hope to see you there!  

LDC to close for Winter Break
LDC will be closed from Friday, December 25, 2015 through Friday, January 1, 2016 in accordance with the University of Pennsylvania Winter Break Policy. Our offices will reopen on Monday, January 4, 2016. Requests received for membership renewals and corpora during the Winter Break will be processed at that time.

New publications
(1) 2006 CoNLL Shared Task - Arabic & Czech consists of Arabic and Czech dependency treebanks used as part of the CoNLL 2006 shared task on multi-lingual dependency parsing.

This corpus is cross listed with ELRA as ELRA-W0087.

The Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning (CoNLL) is accompanied every year by a shared task intended to promote natural language processing applications and evaluate them in a standard setting. In 2006, the shared task was devoted to the parsing of syntactic dependencies using corpora from up to thirteen languages. The task aimed to define and extend the then-current state of the art in dependency parsing, a technology that complemented previous tasks by producing a different kind of syntactic description of input text. More information about the 2006 shared task is available on the CoNLL-X web page.

This source data in this release consists principally of news and journal texts. The individual data sets are subsets of the following:
2006 CoNLL Shared Task - Arabic & Czech is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora. This data is being made available at no-cost for non-member organizations under a research license.


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(2) 2006 CoNLL Shared Task - Ten Languages consists of dependency treebanks in ten languages used as part of the CoNLL 2006 shared task on multi-lingual dependency parsing. The languages covered in this release are: Bulgarian, Danish, Dutch, German, Japanese, Portuguese, Slovene, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.

This corpus is cross listed and jointly released with ELRA as ELRA-W0086.

The Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning (CoNLL) is accompanied every year by a shared task intended to promote natural language processing applications and evaluate them in a standard setting. In 2006 , the shared task was devoted to the parsing of syntactic dependencies using corpora from up to thirteen languages. The task aimed to define and extend the then-current state of the art in dependency parsing, a technology that complemented previous tasks by producing a different kind of syntactic description of input text. More information about the 2006 shared task is available on the CoNLL-X web page.

The source data in the treebanks in this release consists principally of various texts (e.g., textbooks, news, literature) annotated in dependency format. In general, dependency grammar is based on the idea that the verb is the center of the clause structure and that other units in the sentence are connected to the verb as directed links or dependencies. 
The individual data sets are:
2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  This data is being made available at no-cost for non-member organizations under a research license.
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(3) GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Speech was developed by LDC and is comprised of approximately 150 hours of Mandarin Chinese broadcast news speech collected in 2007 and 2008 by LDC and Hong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), Hong Kong, during Phase 3 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program.

Corresponding transcripts are released as GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Transcripts (LDC2015T25).

The broadcast news recordings in this release feature news broadcasts focusing principally on current events from the following sources: Anhui TV, China Central TV (CCTV), Phoenix TV and Voice of America (VOA).

This release contains 279 audio files presented in FLAC-compressed Waveform Audio File format (.flac), 16000 Hz single-channel 16-bit PCM. Each file was audited by a native Chinese speaker following Audit Procedure Specification Version 2.0 which is included in this release.

GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Speech is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.
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(4) GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Transcripts was developed by LDC and contains transcriptions of approximately 150 hours of Chinese broadcast news speech collected in 2007 and 2008 by LDC and Hong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), Hong Kong, during Phase 3 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program.

Corresponding audio data is released as GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Speech (LDC2015S13).

The broadcast news recordings for transcription feature news broadcasts focusing principally on current events from the following sources: Anhui TV,  China Central TV (CCTV), Phoenix TV and Voice of America (VOA).

The transcript files are in plain-text, tab-delimited format (TDF) with UTF-8 encoding, and the transcribed data totals 1,933,695 tokens. The transcripts were created with the LDC-developed transcription tool, XTrans, a multi-platform, multilingual, multi-channel transcription tool that supports manual transcription and annotation of audio recordings. 

The files in this corpus were transcribed by LDC staff and/or by transcription vendors under contract to LDC. Transcribers followed LDC's quick transcription guidelines (QTR) and quick rich transcription specification (QRTR) both of which are included in the documentation with this release.

GALE Phase 3 Chinese Broadcast News Transcripts is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus. 2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

LDC 2015 November Newsletter

Invitation to Join for Membership Year (MY) 2016

Commercial use and LDC data

Spring 2016 Data Scholarship Program

LDC closed for Thanksgiving Break

New publications:

Invitation to Join for Membership Year (MY) 2016

Membership Year (MY) 2016 is open for joining.  We would like to invite all current and previous members of LDC to renew their membership as well as welcome new organizations to join the Consortium.  For MY2016, LDC is pleased to maintain membership fees at last year’s rates – membership fees will not increase.  Additionally, LDC will extend discounts on membership fees to members who keep their membership current and who join early in the year.

The details of our early renewal discounts for MY2015 are as follows: 
  • Organizations who joined for MY2015 will receive a 10% discount when renewing before March 1, 2016. After March 1, 2016, MY2015 members are eligible for a 5% discount when renewing through the end of the year.
  • New members as well as organizations who did not join for MY2015, but who held membership in any of the previous MYs (1993-2014), will also be eligible for a 5% discount provided that they join/renew before March 1, 2016.

Publications for MY2016 are still being planned but we plan to release the following:
  • Arabic Treebank - Weblog ~ part-of-speech/morphological annotation and syntactic tree annotation of web text from various sources
  • BOLT ~ all phases, languages, genres, tasks
  • DEFT ~ Spanish and Chinese resources
  • Digital Archive of Southern Speech - NLP Version ~ colloquial speech in the Southern United States; NLP version normalizes filenames and formats
  • GALE Phase 3 and 4 data ~ all tasks and languages    
  • HAVIC ~ amateur video and transcripts
  • NewSoMe Corpus of Opinion in Blogs ~ opinion annotated English and Spanish blogs


Commercial use and LDC data
For-profit organizations are reminded that an LDC membership is a pre-requisite for obtaining a commercial license to almost all LDC databases.  Non-member organizations, including non-member for-profit organizations, cannot use LDC data to develop or test products for commercialization, nor can they use LDC data in any commercial product or for any commercial purpose.  LDC data users should consult corpus-specific license agreements for limitations on the use of certain corpora. Visit our Licensing page for further information.
Spring 2016 Data Scholarship Program
Applications are now being accepted through Friday, January 15, 2016 for the Spring 2016 LDC Data Scholarship program. The LDC Data Scholarship program provides university students with access to LDC data at no-cost.  This program is open to students pursuing both undergraduate and graduate studies in an accredited college or university. LDC Data Scholarships are not restricted to any particular field of study; however, students must demonstrate a well-developed research agenda and a bona fide inability to pay.

The application consists of two parts:

(1) Data Use Proposal. Applicants must submit a proposal describing their intended use of the data. The proposal should state which data the student plans to use and how the data will benefit their research project as well as information on the proposed methodology or algorithm.

(2) Letter of Support. Applicants must submit one letter of support from their thesis adviser or department chair. The letter must verify the student's need for data and confirm that the department or university lacks the funding to pay the full nonmember fee for the data or to join the Consortium.

For further information on application materials and program rules, please visit the LDC Data Scholarship page.

Students can email their applications to the LDC Data Scholarship program. Decisions will be sent by email from the same address.

The deadline for the Spring 2016 program cycle is January 15, 2016.

LDC closed for Thanksgiving Break

LDC will be closed on Thursday, November 26, 2015 and Friday, November 27, 2015 in observance of the US Thanksgiving Holiday.  Our offices will reopen on Monday, November 30, 2015.

New publications
(1) Articulation Index LSCP was developed by researchers at Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique (LSCP), Ecole Normale Supérieure. It revises and enhances a subset of Articulation Index (AIC) (LDC2005S22), a corpus of persons speaking English syllables. Changes include the addition of forced alignment to sound files, time alignment of syllable utterances and format conversions. AIC consists of 20 American English speakers (12 males, 8 females) pronouncing syllables, some of which form actual words, but most of which are nonsense syllables. All possible Consonant-Vowel (CV) and Vowel-Consonant (VC) combinations were recorded for each speaker twice, once in isolation and once within a carrier-sentence, for a total of 25768 recorded syllables.
Articulation Index LSCP alters AIC in the following ways.
  1. Time-alignments for the onset and offset of each word and syllable were generated through forced-alignment with a standard HMM-GMM (Hidden Markov Model-Gaussian Mixture Model) ASR system.
  2. The time-alignments for the beginning and end of the syllables (whether in isolation or within a carrier sentence) were manually adjusted. The time-alignments for the other words in carrier sentences were not manually adjusted
  3. The recordings of isolated syllables were cut according to the manual time-alignments to remove the silent portions at the beginning and end, and the time-alignments were altered to correspond to the cut recordings
  4. The file naming scheme was slightly altered for compatibility with the Kaldi speech recognition toolkit.de
  5. AIC contains a wide-band (16 KHz, 16-bit PCM) and a narrow-band (8 KHz, 8 bit u-law) version of the recordings distributed in sphere format. The LSCP version contains the wide-band version only distributed as wave files.
Articulation Index LSCP is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  This data is being made available at no-cost for non-member organizations under a research license.
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(2) GALE Phase 4 Chinese Newswire Parallel Sentences was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phase 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Chinese source sentences and corresponding English translations selected from newswire data collected by LDC in 2008 and translated by LDC or under its direction.

GALE Phase 4 Chinese Newswire Parallel Sentences includes 627 source-translation document pairs, comprising 90,434 tokens of Chinese source text and its English translation. Data is drawn from six distinct Chinese newswire sources.

Sentences were selected for translation in two steps. First, files were chosen using sentence selection scripts.  Selected files were reformatted into a human-readable translation format and assigned to translation vendors. Translators followed LDC's Chinese to English translation guidelines and were provided with the full source documents containing the target sentences for their reference. Bilingual LDC staff performed quality control procedures on the completed translations.

GALE Phase 4 Chinese Newswire Parallel Sentences is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) KHATT: Handwritten Arabic Text was developed by King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Technical University of Dortmund and Braunschweig University of Technology. It is comprised of scanned Arabic handwriting from 1,000 distinct male and female writers representing diverse countries, age groups, handedness and education levels. Participants produced text on a topic of their choice in an unrestricted style. KHATT was designed to promote research in areas such as text recognition and writer identification.

The majority of participants were natives of Saudi Arabia; the next largest group was from a collection of regional countries (Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia and Yemen). Most writers were between 16-25 years of age with high school or university qualifications.

KHATT: Handwritten Arabic Text is distributed on one USB drive.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive a copy of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.


Friday, October 16, 2015

LDC 2015 October Newsletter

In this newsletter:
Fall 2015 LDC Data Scholarship recipients

New publications:
GALE Phase 4 Chinese  Broadcast News Parallel Sentences
Karlsruhe Children's Text


Fall 2015 LDC Data Scholarship recipients

Congratulations to the recipients of LDC's Fall 2015 data scholarships:
Anthony Beylerian - Keio University (Japan), MSc, Informatics and Computer Science.  Anthony has been awarded a copy of OntoNotes for his work in word sense disambiguation.
Siti Binte Faizal - Newcastle University (UK), PhD candidate, Speech and Language Sciences.  Siti has been awarded a copy of Levantine Arabic QT Training Speech and Text for her work in psycholinguistics.
Sara El-Kafrawy - Ain Shams University (Egypt), MSc candidate, Computer and Information Sciences.  Sara has been awarded a copy of GALE Arabic English Word Alignment and Arabic Gigaword for her work in machine translation.
Marwa Hadj Salah - University of Sfax (Tunisia), PhD candidate, Computer Science.  Marwa has been awarded a copy of Arabic English Parallel News and Arabic News Translation Text for her work in machine translation.
Tomoaki Goto - University of Tokyo (Japan), PhD candidate, Linguistics.  Tomoaki has been awarded a copy of Arabic Newswire English Translation for his work in syntax.
Richard Metzger - Pennsylvania State University (USA), PhD candidate, Electrical Engineering.  Richard has been awarded a copy of 2008 NIST Speaker Recognition Training Part 2 and Test for his work in speaker recognition.
Jun Ren - Massey University (New Zealand), PhD, Engineering.  Jun has been awarded a copy of TORGO Dysarthric Articulation for his work in speaker recognition.
Gozde Sahin - Istanbul Technical University (Turkey), PhD candidate, Computer Engineering and Informatics.  Gozde has been been awarded a copy of 2009 CoNLL Parts 1 and 2 for her work in semantic role labeling.
Alexey Sholokhov - University of Eastern Finland (Finland), PhD candidate, Computer Sciences.  Alexey has been awarded a copy of RATS Speech Activity Detection for his work in speaker verification.
Stefan Watson - University of the West Indies (Jamaica),  PhD candidate, Physics.  Stefan has been awarded a copy of CMU Kids for his work in phonology and speech recognition.
For program information visit the Data Scholarship page. 

New publications         
(1) ACE2007 Spanish DevTest - Pilot Evaluation was developed by LDC. This publication contains the complete set of Spanish development and test data to support the 2007 Automatic Content Extraction (ACE) technology evaluation, namely, newswire data annotated for entities and temporal expressions.

The objective of the ACE program was to develop automatic content extraction technology to support automatic processing of human language in text form from a variety of sources including newswire, broadcast programming and weblogs. In the 2007 evaluation, participants were tested on system performance for the recognition of entities, values, temporal expressions, relations, and events in Chinese and English and for the recognition of entities and temporal expressions in Arabic and Spanish. LDC's work in the ACE program is described in more detail on the LDC ACE project pages.

LDC has also released ACE 2007 Multilingual Training Corpus (LDC2014T18) which contains the Arabic and Spanish training data used in the 2007 evaluation.

The data consists of newswire material published in May 2005 from the following sources: Agence France Press, The Associated Press and Xinhua News Agency.

All files were annotated by two human annotators working independently. Discrepancies between the two annotations were adjudicated by a senior team member resulting in a gold standard file.

There are three annotation directories for each newswire story that contain an identical copy of the source text in SGML format and two associated annotated versions in XML format and tab delimited format. All text is UTF-8 encoded.

ACE 2007 Spanish DevTest - Pilot Evaluation is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(2) GALEPhase 4 Chinese Broadcast News Parallel Sentences was developed by LDC. Along with other corpora, the parallel text in this release comprised training data for Phase 4 of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program. This corpus contains Chinese source sentences and corresponding English translations selected from broadcast news data collected by LDC in 2008 and transcribed and translated by LDC or under its direction.

GALE Phase 4 Chinese Broadcast News Parallel Sentences includes 40 source-translation document pairs, comprising 156,429 tokens of Chinese source text and its English translation. Data is drawn from eight distinct Chinese programs broadcast in 2008 from China Central TV, a national and international broadcaster in Mainland China; and Voice of America, a U.S. government-funded broadcast programmer. The programs in this release feature news programs on current events topics.

The data was transcribed by LDC staff and/or transcription vendors under contract to LDC in accordance with the Quick Rich Transcription guidelines developed by LDC. Transcribers indicated sentence boundaries in addition to transcribing the text. Sentences were selected for translation in two steps. First, files were chosen using sentence selection scripts provided by GALE program participants SRI International and IBM. The output was then manually reviewed by LDC staff to eliminate problematic sentences. Selected files were reformatted into a human-readable translation format and assigned to translation vendors. Translators followed LDC's Chinese to English translation guidelines and were provided with the full source documents containing the target sentences for their reference. Bilingual LDC staff performed quality control procedures on the completed translations.

Source data and translations are distributed in TDF format. TDF files are tab-delimited files containing one segment of text along with meta information about that segment. Each field in the TDF file is described in TDF_format.txt. All data are encoded in UTF-8.

GALE Phase 4 Chinese Broadcast News Parallel Sentences is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.

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(3) KarlsruheChildren's Text was developed by the Cooperative State University Baden-Württemberg, University of Education and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. It consists of over 14,000 freely written, German sentences from more than 1,700 school children in grades one through eight.

The data collection was conducted in 2011-2013 at elementary and secondary schools in and around Karlsruhe, Germany. Students were asked to write as verbose a text as possible. Those in grades one to four were read two stories and were then asked to write their own stories. Students in grades five through eight were instructed to write on a specific theme, such as "Imagine the world in 20 years. What has changed?”. The goal of the collection was to use the data to develop a spelling error classification system.

Annotators converted the handwritten text into digital form with all errors committed by the writers; they also created an orthographically correct version of every sentence. Metadata about the text was gathered, including the circumstances under which it was collected, information about the student writer and background about spelling lessons in the particular class. In a second step, the students' spelling errors were annotated into general groupings: grapheme level, syllable level, morphology and syntax. The files were anonymized in a third step.

This release also contains metadata regarding the writers’ language biography, teaching methodology, age, gender and school year. The average age of the participants was 11 years, and the gender distribution was nearly equal. Original handwriting is presented as JPEG format image files and the converted annotated text as UTF-8 plain text. Metadata is contained within each text file.

Karlsruhe Children's Text is distributed via web download.

2015 Subscription Members will automatically receive two copies of this corpus.  2015 Standard Members may request a copy as part of their 16 free membership corpora.  Non-members may license this data for a fee.