Australasian Language Technology Association

Latest ALTA News

ALTA 2019 Workshop

The 2019 Australasian Language Technology Association Workshop (ALTA 2019) will be held from the 4th-6th of December at the University of Technology Sydney, co-located with the Australasian Document Computing Symposium.

ALTA 2019 Shared Task

ALTA is seeking problems to use for the tenth ALTA Shared Task. The ALTA shared tasks are targeted at university students with programming experience. The problems that we are seeking should have the following features:

  • They are related to a language technology task.
  • They should be easy to explain to undergraduate and Masters students with programming skills but without knowledge on language technology.
  • The task should be of such a difficulty that it would encourage the participants to attempt the competition, yet it is possible to discriminate among the best submissions and pick a winner. In other words, it should be very hard to get perfect results (so that it is difficult to have ties) but simple methods should achieve encouraging results.
  • It should be possible to evaluate the results automatically using an evaluation platform such as Kaggle in Class (
  • The training and test data can be distributed to the participants freely ("free" as for "freedom", and preferably with no or very small cost).
  • The final test data should not be currently publicly available.
  • And above all, the task should be fun!
For any questions or to submit a proposal, please send an email to:

ALTA 2019-2020 Election

Following the latest election, we are pleased to announce the positions for the executive committee:

  • Sarvnaz Karimi (president), CSIRO Data61
  • Stephen Wan (secretary, outgoing President), CSIRO Data61
  • Andrew MacKinlay (treasurer), Culture Vulture
  • Xiang Dai (student representative), CSIRO Data61 and University of Sydney
  • Diego Molla (regular member), Macquarie University
  • Maria Kim (regular member), Defence Science and Technology

The Role of Research in Language Technology

The cutting-edge nature of Language Technology means that research is particularly important: there are many unsolved problems in the automated processing of spoken and written language, and in many cases we have only begun to scratch the surface. Research in Language Technology, which for our purposes covers a space that also includes Natural Language Processing and Computational Linguistics, draws on work in a diverse array of disciplines, including linguistics, psychology, philosophy and computer science, and now, with the increasing role played by statistical methods, also mathematics.

Research Activity in Australasia

Given the wide range of contributing disciplines, research in Language Technology in Australia and New Zealand is carried out in many different contexts. The listing below provides pointers to clusters of activity that involve more than one or two individual researchers.

Quick links

For any comments or questions about these pages please contact the ALTA secretary.

Copyright 2003-2019 ALTA. Last updated: 11 Jul 2019