Google has updated their Goggles application to include a translation tool. With the Goggles app, a person can take a picture of foreign text in one language and convert it to another.
Wow. Pretty incredible.
I forecast that either: 1) Languages may never be taught in school again 2) The world may end up speaking one language ...these tools are quickly getting very accurate and the uses are far reaching outside the "computer" box.
Interesting point about "one language". With a "universal translator" type device I'd imagine that different languages will thrive rather than stagnate. Speaking one's language would become a source of pride, a part of cultural identity. A language already is that to a great extent (see Quebec and the French language rules) and I think that this kind of device would only increase that kind of stuff. The machine would do the work allowing for the "purity" of the language to remain. Very cool and some interesting social ramifications are possible.
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