Friday, April 23, 2010
Google Translate goes multi-species as well as multi-cultural
As announced by Google, "For millennia man and animal have tolerantly coexisted, separated by language and the development of opposable thumbs. Today we can proudly say that we have overcome one of those hurdles. Presenting Google Translate for Animals, a new application available in Android Market."
Of course, it is unlikely that any of the animals you know personally will have any valuable genealogical information, but you might need some of the other Google products such as
Google Translate, now with speech capabilities. Quoting from the Google translate blog, "In November 2009 we launched a “text-to-speech” feature which allowed users to hear words and sentences in English read out loud by Google Translate. Since then we’ve added Haitian Creole and in March added French, Italian, and German to the list of supported languages. To hear any of languages out loud, just click the icon next to the translation when you visit translate.google.com."
Now, Google also has transliteration of non-Roman scripts. As featured in the Official Google Blog, "Most of us use a keyboard to enter text; it's one of the most basic activities we perform on a computer. However even this simple activity can be cumbersome in many parts of the world. If you've ever tried to type in a non-Roman script using a Roman keyboard, you know that it can be difficult to do. Many of us at Google's Bangalore office experienced this problem firsthand. Roman keyboards are the norm in India, making it difficult to type in Indian languages. We decided to tackle this problem by making it very easy to type phonetically using Roman characters and we launched this service as Google Transliteration.
Using Google Transliteration you can convert Roman characters to their phonetic equivalent in your language. Note that this is not the same as translation — it's the sound of the words that are converted from one alphabet to the other. For example, typing "hamesha" transliterates into Hindi as: , typing "salaam" transliterates into Persian as: and typing "spasibo" transliterates into Russian as . Since our initial launch for a single Indian language, we've been hard at work on improving quality, adding more languages and new features."
Thanks to John Newmark of TransylvanianDutch Genealogy and Family History, for the link to this newer feature from Google.