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Microsoft AI: Now you can get universal language translator for groups


The app allows groups of people who don't speak the same language to communicate. Science fiction has moved one step closer to science fact, with Microsoft's launch of a universal translator, an application that allows conversations between groups of people speaking different languages to be translated in real time. Using technology based on Skype Translator for mobile and landline calls, Microsoft Translator allows people to have face-to-face conversations in different languages with the aid of an application that immediately translates the speech to text. The application can translate multiple languages at once, as Microsoft demonstrated at its Future Decoded event in London last month. The demo showed three people in a conversation, each speaking a different language: French, English, and German.

IFlytek, CIPG Will Build National AI Translator to Meet Rising Demand


China's top voice recognition firm iFlytek has penned a deal with China International Publishing Group to build a national artificial intelligence translator and keep up with rising demand. AI translations can lift the burden off human translators, who can barely keep up with requirements at government departments and companies looking to operate overseas, state-owned news agency Xinhua cited CIPG Deputy Director Fang Zhenghui as saying. The machine can translate Chinese into 33 languages, added Liu Qingfeng, president of Anhui-based iFlytek, saying it uses cutting-edge technology to improve the accuracy of machine translations. "When translation machines fail to recognize some special nouns or specific terms, human translators can monitor the process and help to polish the text," he said. "The machine [can] learn from these mistakes and improve its work next time."

Baidu shows off its instant pocket translator


Baidu showed off the speed of its pocket translator for the first time in the United States during an afternoon presentation at MIT Technology Review's EmTech Digital conference in San Francisco. The Chinese Internet giant has made significant strides improving machine language translation since 2015, using an advanced form of artificial intelligence known as deep learning, said Hua Wu, the company's chief scientist focused on natural-language processing. On stage, the Internet-connected device was able to almost instantly translate a short conversation between Wu and senior editor Will Knight. It easily rendered Knight's questions--including "Where can I buy this device?" Mandarin, and relayed Wu's responses in clear, if machine-inflected, English.

Skype adds Japanese to its real-time voice translator


Skype Translator, the communication platform's real-time voice translator, just reached a new milestone. Microsoft announced on Thursday that Skype Translator is adding a 10th language: Japanese. The language will now be available on all Microsoft Translation services -- even Microsoft Translator Live. As Skype noted in a blog post, "Japanese has commonly been noted as one of the most difficult languages for native English speakers to learn." So this new addition should serve as a huge benefit to users, especially for those who already use Skype Translator for its nine other spoken languages, including: English, Spanish, French, German, Chinese (Mandarin), Italian, Portuguese (Brazilian), Arabic, and Russian.

The Shallowness of Google Translate

The Atlantic - Technology

As a language lover and an impassioned translator, as a cognitive scientist and a lifelong admirer of the human mind's subtlety, I have followed the attempts to mechanize translation for decades.