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How do you handle multilingual chats?

Hello there.

We built a very basic chatbot for soccer results and upcoming matches. It is working on twitter and so far it only understands spanish. I was thinking of the best approach to make it multilingual. I think I have two options:

a) train another NLP model for english (as a start) so it can recognize the messages natively.
b) take the incoming message, use some translation service to make it spanish, get the response, and then use the same service to translate the response to the original language, and finally send it to the user

Have you worked on those topics? How have you manage that?

Have a nice weekend everyone!

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Hey Carlos,

We had the same issue but in the opposite way. We want to build Dutch / French chatbots for our customers. So we have trained the NLP to understand the other languages (we have found some open database for NLP - list of basic words to understand). But the problem in the other way is a bit easier to handle, you can use existing English NLP (we use API.AI but they are many others : Chatfuel, …). These “chatbot / NLP” SaaS provider works fine in English (you might need some adjustments but the basis is already there).

Hope this will help

In some of the Telegram chatbot games I have played in the very beginning they ask what language you speak and let you choose. Then from then on out the entire system will be in that language. You would need to on the back end make sure that all the text being used is externalized so it can be easily swapped out for text of a different language.

If you are using a service to make your bot not entirely sure how you would handle it… As it would all funnel through their system. May be worth pinging one of those services to see if it’s even possible using their platform to do multilingual.

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Hey Carlos, this should be helpful: recently I wrote an article on multilingual bots, published in Chatbots Magazine:

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It’s impressive. Lots of very useful information. Thanks a lot for sharing. I will surely use one or some of the techniques described.

Have a great day, and anytime you want to talk about these topics, just let me know.

@carlosherrera I would recommend a). with b) you will have translation back-and-forth inaccuracies and also lag. we built our own NLP platform and are doing each separate for a language. in our pipeline are also using existing chat logs for automated question-intent labelling system to give for better accuracy than and other standard platforms. if you have more questions, feel free to reach out