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Language — or rather text — played a key role in the recent high-profile departure of the president of Harvard University, Claudine Gay. The simple story is that Gay was found to have plagiarised other scholars’ work on multiple… Read More
Although Google Glass has not yet been released, many people are already excited about this killer gadget. Many reports claim, however, that there are already some haters that are not at all impressed with this upcoming device. Google Glass’ potential is tremendous, but some people are still doubtful about its benefits for communication and understanding between people.
So, what do you think? What would it be like to wear Google Glass? And why would I want a Google Glass?
Through these rose tinted glasses, many people will a have chance to see another dimension of languages and information. It will be advantageous to most people to be able to help people connect useful data and images that are necessary for human knowledge and interactions.
So how does it actually work?
Each pair of glasses is fitted with a miniaturised camera and a web browser that will enable this device to send text messages or emails, record videos, provide translations and give directions. The device is also fitted with a microphone and a tiny speaker which allows the user to give voice commands for sending text messages and emails and then read back on the screen to check that the computer has heard and spelt your words correctly. In addition, you can frame people in your glass through Google+ and search for their profiles. So, does it mean if you are wearing a Google Glass you will look smart and classy, or will you look and feel like an idiot?
Can it really provide accurate information such as language translation?
When it comes to translation, it still remains to be seen if Google Glass is capable of robustly translating between numerous languages. If so, then this could for instance be a winning gadget for tourists, helping them find their way in a foreign language environment. Language students can also be helped in the process of understanding a foreign language faster (or is that cheating?).
However, most people argue that Google Glass may produce an instant translation process but nobody is sure if this gadget can actually produce an accurate enough language conversion. On the other hand, as Google Glass is developed, it could start to play a vital role in language learning.
The premise is perhaps not too promising: Google itself has plenty of experience in translating languages badly; and thus, Google Glass may be helpful in some ways, but obtaining an accurate language translation may be quite a stretch. Today, many mobile applications can be downloaded to your smartphones which will help you translate languages; however none of these programs can as yet rival the performance of human brains. Well, let’s see if it will improve in the next 10 years.
Languages are just not as simple as, say, basic Maths, where a machine can do your subtractions and multiplications. Perhaps, Google Glass will be an amazing and helpful gadget, which may change your life, but not in the way you think.
One issue is that when this device will be available in the market, many industries could be negatively affected, and one of the industries is the translation industry. However, many linguists believe that Google Glass is likely to produce lower quality translation, rather than improvements. In a sense that’s a good thing: for the foreseeable future, it is only going to threaten the livelihoods of poor quality would-be translators.
Many people may think that Google Glass is one of the awesome pieces of technology ever invented, but many critics have pointed out the privacy implications of Glass, which means that nobody is safe and you are constantly being watched. It could also be extremely annoying: anybody who has ever been irritated by friends playing with their smartphones will most certainly not appreciate this new gadget.
Google Glass may help our lives by providing us with quick access to information such as translation and communication, but nothing can ever replace human thinking; technology may help improve our lifestyle but human translators are quite safe, for now.
Taylor Wessing LLP
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Jackie Brook, Sr Product Manager
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Maximus Crushing and Screening
I have translated multiple projects with Rosetta now and I cannot emphasise how great the service they provide is; quality, turnaround time and pricing is the best I have found yet. The qualities of translations we receive are of the highest standard and communication from the start of a project to the end is consistent.
For a company looking into translations, I would highly recommend Rosetta as first pick, as the support and service they provide is first class.
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