(This is quite distinct from automatic summarisation software, which takes a text and delivers the "gist" of it. Some years ago, a large chunk of various intelligence agencies' research budgets was spent on this area, in an attempt to more easily cope with the flood of signal intelligence. And, unless the CIA and such have such systems in use, chances are it still is.)
Anyway, back to paraphrasing; when I read about this, the first thought that came to me was that it would be very useful to student plagiarists seeking to avoid detection (say, by Google searches on key sentences, or matches against other submitted assignments). Which made me wonder: have any plagiarists ever tried covering their tracks by passing an essay through several passes of Babelfish? (Given some of the grammar I've seen in student essays, I'm sure it wouldn't look too amiss.)
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