MIT Invents AI to Decipher Ancient Languages


Lost Languages

A team of researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) have created an AI that’s capable of automatically deciphering long lost languages, even without any other advanced knowledge of how it relates to other languages.

The goal is to uncover relationships between “lost” languages for which historians have found written records, but which nobody has actually spoken in a long time.

AI Cypher

The researchers taught a “decipherment algorithm” various linguistic constraints that occur as languages evolve in predictable ways. It then figured out patterns of language using these constraints.

The algorithm can, as a result, categorize words in an ancient language and link them to the equivalents in other related languages. In other words, while it’s not quite capable of acting like a Google Translate to decipher ancient texts into English, it can identify the roots of ancient tongues.

Linguistic Mysteries

For instance, the algorithm was able to accurately identify the language family of Iberian, an ancient language spoken by indigenous western European people from roughly the 7th to the first century BC.

According to the AI, Iberian was not in fact related to Basque, as recent research corroborates.

The team is hoping to eventually use their AI to decipher long lost languages using only a few thousand words.

READ MORE: Translating lost languages using machine learning [MIT News]

More on AI: Facebook Algorithm Flags Onions as “Overtly Sexualized”

Latest articles

Hawaii seeks to be seen as a remote workplace with a view

Software engineer Raymond Berger begins his work day at 5 a.m., before the sun comes up over Hawaii. Rising early is necessary because the...

Taylor Swift’s ‘Folklore’ Live Album Is This Week’s Fan Favorite New Music

Last week, Swift treated fans to early Christmas gifts by releasing a Disney+ film documenting the making of her 2020 quarantine album, Folklore,...

Indian farmers reject talks with government amid blockades, furor over agriculture legislation

Protesting farmers on Sunday rejected the Indian government's offer to hold immediate talks if they ended their blockades of key highways as they seek...

Canada ‘not at the back of the line’ for COVID-19 vaccine, Moderna chairman says

The head of a U.S. biotechnology company that is developing one of the most promising COVID-19 vaccine candidates says Canada is not far...

Related articles

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here