What is language technology?

Language technology (LT or HLT) is an interdisciplinary subject and includes the study of language, computer science and artificial intelligence. Language technology basically concerns computers and their ability to recognize, understand, interpret, produce, and imitate human languages, written and spoken. HLT overlaps largely with natural language processing (NLP) but can be understood as slightly more application oriented towards specific technological devices.

Language technology simplifies and improves computer/man communication and generally supports communication between people and is therefore crucial in AI applications. Today, nearly all kinds of information are processed, stored and retrieved by computers and a huge amount of especially written communication is mediated by computers.  Therefore, language technology significantly influences communication in a modern society.

From a cognitive perspective the study of language technology aims at comprehending the framework and ingredients of an effortless man/computer communication, preferably as effortless as man/man communication. Thus, language technology has close relations to the study of cognition, and by improving the computer's communicative skills, we also create a better understanding of natural languages and of our ability to understand the surrounding world.