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Language Translation Software

Page history last edited by Joann Christina Persaud 7 years, 4 months ago Saved with comment

Language translation mobile applications are very useful for tourists, students learning a new language, and those conducting international business deals. There are a slew of these apps on the market today. Below are a few that I have tested along with the links to their websites and YouTube tutorials. They are all relatively similar. Additionally, SpeechTrans Ultimate does have a camera feature so a person can take a picture of a sign written in another language and have it translated.


The features that the applications have in common are that each has, in essence, a Language A column and a Language B column. For Language A, the user selects the language he or she currently speaks. For Language B, the user selects the language into which he or she would like the translation. There is a record button. The Language A speaker presses the record button and speaks slowly into the phone.  This speaker then presses the record button again in order to stop the recording. The program takes a few seconds to process the translation. Once it is done processing, it speaks the words in Language B. This is especially helpful when there are two speakers - one who speaks and understands Language A and one who speaks and understands Language B. The Language A person speaks into the phone in Language A. The translation comes out in Language B. There is then an option for the Language B person to respond. The Language B person could then respond in Language B. The software would then translates the words into Language A.


There are endless possibilities and potential uses for these applications. Tourists traveling in foreign countries no longer have to memorize words in a foreign language before they travel. They can merely download the app to their phone and, in real time, obtain translations that they would need on their trip. These translations would come out both in written and spoken form.


Students learning a new language could use the app in a similar way. Since there is a repeat function, they can keep listening to and practicing pronunciation easily throughout the day as the information would be at their fingertips.


People conducting business deals could also now potentially work without relying too heavily on a human translator. They can negotiate back and forth directly with the aid of the language translator app.


All of the below apps (Vocre, Speech Trans Ultimate, and Translingo) are powered by Nuance, the same voice recognition technology that powers Siri, the personal assistant app http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpjpVAB06O4 and http://uk.news.yahoo.com/siri-205800594.html#NGJTZhL.








Nexus 7 with Ectaco Language Teaching Software 



SpeechTrans Ultimate  










As mentioned before, the above apps (Vocre, SpeechTrans Ultimate, and Translingo) are all powered by Nuance.

Nuance is a company that offers diverse speech recognition solutions.  For more information, see below:





Microsoft is also working on speech recognition software that works in a similar fashion as the above mobile apps. However, the Microsoft software would actually create the translation using a person's own voice.  The YouTube video below shares more details about this upcoming software:




The basic way it works is similar to the above apps. The speaker speaks in Language A.  It is converted to text in Language A.  It is then converted to text in Language B with the words re-ordered into a more natural style of speaking in Language B. It is then converted into a voice translation in the speaker's own natural voice. This is a result of research conducted between Microsoft Research and the University of Toronto. It is still in beta mode and has not yet been released to the public. The technology mimics the human brain vs. utilizing hidden markov models (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hidden_Markov_model) that had been used in the past.


Also, another focus is machine translation. Bing Translate, a Microsoft product, is used by many to translate webpages into their native language.



Google also has free machine translation application, known as Google Translate that can translate any word, phase, sentence or even an entire webpage into 66 different languages (http://translate.google.com/). Like Bing translate, Google translate is a very widely used program.





CES: iPhone speech recognition from Nuance. (2010). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo43IMs8LWw&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Getting started with Zotero. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dYu6__8e94Q&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Hidden Markov model. (2013, April 22). Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved April 26, 2013 from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Hidden_Markov_model&oldid=551655540
Introducing SpeechTrans Ultimate Voice and Photo Translator Powered By Nuance 3D Ready Video. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mPW190Y6s0&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Language Translation App Translingo Voice iPhone App Video Review - CrazyMikesapps iPhone Apps. (2012).
Nexus 7 with Ectaco Language Teaching Software. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45F_eovHBEY 
Speech Recognition Breakthrough for the Spoken, Translated Word. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nu-nlQqFCKg&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Translingo. (n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2013, from http://www.translingoapp.com/
Vocre - Universal Translator App. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_xZag0HCG8&feature=youtube_gdata_player


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