or LinkedIn here uk.linkedin.com/pub/tony-smith-bsc-hons-acih/a/979/351/
You cannot have missed the other week the exercise carried out on Skype with its new magic trick of language translation. This was demonstrated with a conversation going from English to German, and back again in real time. Credit where credit is due, this is interesting innovation from a product now in Microsoft’s stable. It was previewed at the 2014 Code Conference by Microsoft too. Watch the BBC report showing English to Spanish here
The preview looks to be Windows 8.1 or 10 only currently. The preview will only be Spanish originally.
Although a little jerky at times and incorporating a slight delay to interpret whole sentences at a time, it was pretty impressive. It must be admitted, translation from German to English is easier to pull off than English to English (e.g. US English to Scots English or South African to Australian English). Nuances like ‘tinnies’, ‘carry oots’, ‘barbies’, ‘soccer’ & football could be expected to be tricky. The whole exercise indeed me of those old star-trek episodes, where Kirk and the crew could communicate with alien races pretty seamlessly.
Within the housing sphere, I can see potential here when dealing with a variety of ethnic minorities presenting at housing associations and local authorities, where currently specialist translators would be utilised. Now it is likely that Microsoft will prioritise Spanish, Mandarin, Hindi and Arabic, which will net them about 50% of world speakers. Microsoft have already tried it out in schools and colleges, with success.
Instant messaging already supports around 40 languages for text conversations. Google translate current supports over 80, including Maltese and Welsh. Maybe for the future, Skype voice translation is one to watch, but we better be patient. this is Microsoft after all....
Related Post: Not all good technology is better than what went before
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(c) Tony Smith, Acutance Consulting www.acutanceconsulting.co.uk 07854-655009
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