Andrea Ballista (Voiseed) became the 2022 “Localization Process Innovator of the Year for Europe” at the 12th PIC event which took place on July 12, 2021 at LocWorldWide47 Berlin.

The innovation “Voicing the Unvoiced with Universal AI Voice Dubbing” explained how expressive voice can be created from scratch using an AI technology they have built to ingest source content and text, as well as target text, to produce an expressive output voice.

As Andrea said during his pitch, “We wanted to solve the expressive voice problem in dubbing for games, media, and other use cases. The normal process is very resource intensive, with actors, studio engineers, and others. Text-to-speach systems are struggling to be expressive — so subtitling is used and users can’t enjoy expressive voice. There is a growing demand for this but it is very complicated to solve, as you need to map emotion to vocal representation. We are solving this.”

The competition runner-up was Saurabh Kavathekar (NetApp) with the innovation, “Dr. Global — Source Code Internationalization Self-healing Using AI”. This replaces “dumb” static scan techniques for internationalization issues which typically are very reactive. Dr. Global is an intelligent system that spots issues as the developer is developing, and includes recommendations, remediation, and other smart systems. This gives an extremely high-quality scan output, and prevents more than 90% of the internationalization issues when this product is applied and significantly reduces false positives.

One of the dragons at PIC 12, Giulia Tarditi, added: “I believe in the PIC and its power to be a force for good that can meaningfully drive our industry forward. It was an honor for me to be involved in the innovation challenge event — the line-up of innovators was so strong that all of their speeches gave me goosebumps. Andrea’s audio AI innovation’s potential really left me gobsmacked.”

As PIC founder and cohost, Dave Ruane put it: “PIC 12 was our best yet in terms of the overall quality, both in the preliminary and final rounds. We decided that we should go big as we come back to in-person events. We had more submissions this time (over 20) and the final round was very energetic and lively with a full LocWorld stage and over 250 attendees watching the final, live in Berlin. Andrea’s innovation is truly stunning — he found a real need: expressive language dubbing, and figured out how to do something very complex, with a very cool tweakable output — definitely watch this space.”

The PIC dragons were Bert Esselink (RWS), Giulia Tarditi (Qualtrics), Patricia Paladini (Paladini Global), and Jochen Hummel (). Alex Bernet (LocWorld), and Dave Ruane (XTM International) complete the PIC organizing team. We would also like to thank Multilingual magazine, LocWorld, and XTM International for supporting the event.

Another PIC event is completed, congratulations to all who took part. The next PIC event will be in November 2022 in Silicon Valley. The call for papers will open in August 2022.

Do you have a localization process or technology innovation for the PIC “stage”? Keep an eye out for the call for papers or contact Dave Ruane or Alex Bernet directly.

The innovators and innovations at the final of the 12th PIC event were:

  1. Andrea Ballista – Voiseed
    “Voicing the Unvoiced with Universal AI Voice Dubbing”
  2. Gary Lefman – Cisco
    Unlimited Continuous Localization Using Distributed Scalable Microservices
  3. Robert Brodowicz – Argos Multilingual
    “AI-powered TM Cleanup ”
  4. Saurabh Kavathekar – NetApp
    “Source Code Internationalization Self-healing Using AI”
  5. Konstantin Savenkov – Intento
    “Translating ICU Elements with Machine Translation Is Now Possible“