CIA's In-Q-Tel funds linguistics software maker

In-Q-Tel, the CIA's venture capital arm, has invested in Basis Technology Corp. of Cambridge, Mass., which sells software for multilingual linguistic analysis, text mining and information retrieval.

In-Q-Tel licensed Basis products and provided a strategic investment, but neither organization disclosed the terms or dollar value of the transaction. In-Q-Tel deals typically fall between $1 million and $3 million.

Jonathan Joseph, the In-Q-Tel associate responsible for the project, said Basis' Rosette globalization platform performs morphological analysis'breaking down words into component parts, among other tasks.

Basis chief executive officer Carl Hoffman said, 'This particular deal is focused on developing and deploying technology for cross-script name matching. That is the problem of searching documents in foreign languages and watch lists.'

The software suite 'separates the word 'worked' into 'work' and 'ed,' ' Joseph said.
'We all know about the volume problem' the government has in translating foreign languages, he said. 'Basis automates the translation. Google.com, for example, counts as one of Basis' customers, and there are a small number of competitors.'

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