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A Google Translator Phone In Some Years?  (View post)

Richard [PersonRank 0]

Sunday, February 14, 2010
8 years ago3,682 views

google should develop their current translator much better, its really bad.

Brian Barker [PersonRank 0]

8 years ago #

Google's "Babel Fish" translator will in never solve the language problem. Not only does it discriminate against anyone who cannot afford a mobile phone, but against minority language groups as well.

There are 6,800 languages worldwide, not fifty-two!

Moreover, if I met a native in Borneo, and he said to me in Hakka "I've lost my mobile phone" how would I understand him :) And how many starving Africans can afford a mobile phone!

As English loses its economic power, the answer is not for us to move to Mandarin Chinese, but to Esperanto which puts all speakers on an equal footing.

Have a look at lernu.net or esperanto.net

Mark Jacobs [PersonRank 1]

8 years ago #

How is english losing it's power? there are more english speaking people in china than there are in america, it's the single most used language on earth.

David Mulder [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

[put at-character here]Brian Barker: I doubt you will ever read my reply, but here I go either way:
   "discriminate against anyone who cannot afford a mobile phone" => Just like language discriminates against anybody who can't afford going to school
   "against minority language groups as well. There are 6,800 languages worldwide, not fifty-two!" => You should be focused on people, not languages, its about the number of people speaking these (right now 52) languages, which is – if I am not mistaken – the large majority of the world population. If you only take into account the first 11 languages you can already reach ~3.8 milliard people (source: vistawide.com/languages/top_30 ...)
   "And how many starving Africans can afford a mobile phone!" And how many of them can afford education? This is a total non-issue in the current discussion (although an important issue altogether)
   "As English loses its economic power, the answer is not for us to move to Mandarin Chinese" Or, as these development (this phone) suggests, everybody will simply learn one (semi-major) language and the phone will handle the rest.
   "but to Esperanto which puts all speakers on an equal footing." And this is total rubbish. First of all, Esperanto doesn't put all speakers on an equal footing AT ALL, I can speak about 5 languages and understand even more and Esperanto is extremely strongly biased towards Portuguese and Spanish (despite it being created by a Polish dentist). On top of that, speaking the same language makes people more the same, but the footing isn't changing at all! It will just steal away the very essence of a persons self-being. If at the very least the language would be easier than current languages (or have other advantages like lojban), then there would be at least some point. Oh well... I guess I just got frustrated at those people who still have not realised after all those years that Esperanto was and is a failure of epic proportions...

Oh and, @Phillipp: The link in the article isn't working.

TOMHTML [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

Google Translator on cell-phone? The Nexus One already does that, isn't it?

Andy Wong [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

David Mulder's comment is the star of the post.

Beside, while I have been skeptical to the quality of machine translation and voice recognition, as both require significant sci-tech break through in AI, which were lack in last 20 years, however, I still appreciate Google's effort to bring both together, because this will eventually enrich the statical base analysis of machine translation and voice recognition.

milivella [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

Philipp, maybe you wanted to link to
blogoscoped.com/archive/2005-0 ...
(the link you provided doesn't work)

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

(Thanks Milivella, corrected now!)

milivella [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

Thank you for replying, Philipp. But the link is still broken for me: I still see (even after refreshing the page)
" blogoscoped.com/archive/Google Translator: The Universal Language"

Remush [PersonRank 0]

8 years ago #

"Esperanto doesn't put all speakers on an equal footing AT ALL, "
Ask a Portuguese how to say "apple" in Esperanto. Then ask a Chinese, a French, a Zulu. They all are on equal footing: they just don't know.
However, a _listener_ could guess the meaning of 'pomo' given a context, if he is French.

"I can speak about 5 languages and understand even more and Esperanto is extremely strongly biased towards Portuguese and Spanish"
To have a correct opinion about the "bias" read remush.be/etimo/etimo.html .
Esperanto is biased towards Latin, but more generally Indo-European.

" (despite it being created by a Polish dentist). "
Was he?

"On top of that, speaking the same language makes people more the same"
This is a believe. Put twelve Esperantists in a room, and try to find something they would all agree upon. (remush.be/rebuttal/index.html# ...)

"If at the very least the language would be easier than current languages"
read remush.be/rebuttal/index.html# ...

" (or have other advantages like lojban),"
read In the Land of Constructed Languages from Arilka Okrent (ISBN 978-0-385-52788-0 published by Spiegel & Grau)

" then there would be at least some point. Oh well... I guess I just got frustrated at those people who still have not realised after all those years that Esperanto was and is a failure of epic proportions..."

... while English took – how long exactly? – to reach – what point exactly? -, considering the money and time that States have been putting in it?

The next disasters of epic proportion are yet to come. Guess which. Guess when.
(hint: Greek, Latin, French, English, ???, ???, ???, and then Esperanto at last (unless Swahili succeeds – what is also good).
We still have some time to evaluate whether Esperanto is a failure or not.
I am very optimistic but I don't think common sense will prevail before a few more decades.

Remuŝ

ianf [PersonRank 10]

8 years ago #

I love it that we're having what looks like FIRST EVER language fight in Blogoscoped Forum. And so cultured; nobody yet calling the opponent names, 'n all! ;-))

L. L. Zamenhof, as en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L._L._Za ... calls him, or Ludwik Z. acc. to pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ludwik_Z ... was indeed Polish, though physician rather than a dentist. I had always considered his Esperanto a kind of Volapük with Latin-German roots, but, if you say "strongly biased towards Portuguese and Spanish"... to each his own.

On the other hand, ever since I first encountered the Interlingua interlingua.com/ [or the same page in English interlingua.com/interlingua-en ; there's also a legacy page of the American once-branch of it interlingua.org/default.aspx], I felt it was pretty close an optimal mix of Anglo-Saxon-Francophone-Spanish syntax and vocabularies (at least for those with a smattering of tourist phraseology in foreign tongues....) Certainly the most mature of all artificial languages to date.

Mind you, I DO NOT PROPOSE that we all learn Interlingua as some kind of intermediate layer between source-X and target-Y for translation duties.

This thread is locked as it's old... but you can create a new thread in the forum. 

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