Universal Translator a reality?

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by MANT!, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. MANT!

    MANT! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  2. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Bigger than a combadge. No seamless multi-party conversations. No deciphering of unknown alien languages on the fly. Lame.
     
  3. MANT!

    MANT! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    yeah but you gotta start somewhere..
     
  4. Lindley

    Lindley Moderator with a Soul Premium Member

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    So basically, voice recognition (including some kind of principal component analysis describing the deviation of the speaker's voice from the model), then translation, then text-to-speech except using the above PCA parameters to try and make the voice synthesis sound like the original speaker?

    Seems straightforward enough. That's a lot of potential weak links though.
     
  5. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Give it that old classic "time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana" and see what happens.
     
  6. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Shaka when the walls fell
     
  7. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Or "Out of sight, out of mind."

    Forget real-time computer translation -- even basic speech recognition still has a long way to go. Link
     
  8. Nowhere Man

    Nowhere Man Commodore

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  9. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    art imitates life, life imitates art.
     
  10. FPAlpha

    FPAlpha Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well.. the universal translator has some huge logic flaws but a few months ago i saw a report on TV where some guy had a smartphone (don't know if it was Android or iPhone) and tried to strike up a conversation with foreigners.

    He spoke into it and a short while later a computer voice spoke the translation.. worked pretty well for French and Spanish, soso for Turkish and Arabic and mostly had problems with Mandarin Chinese.

    However fact was that with that app a person could do basic day to day life in a foreign country, for example as a tourist gone shopping or asking for something in the local language.

    A few years ago such a software was unthinkable and was pretty rudimentary.. who knows how it will work 10 years from now?
    I can see this working quite well for day to day language but may have problems with more specialized words or dialects but it could be a huge help in foreign countries.
     
  11. Lindley

    Lindley Moderator with a Soul Premium Member

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    There are two things that need to work well here: voice recognition, and translation. We know neither one works perfectly yet.
     
  12. The Dominion

    The Dominion Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And of course these are known languages, whereas the key function of the UT is to automatically decipher alien languages on its own.
     
  13. FPAlpha

    FPAlpha Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Which can't ever happen the way it's shown in Star Trek.. even a computer needs data before he can compute something and what works logically in one language might not in another, especially if it has developed entirely independently and even by a different race with its own psychology and history.

    There is no frame of reference, no vocabulary and set of rules from which a computer program might build a working database.. it may if it had enough time and enough samples but certainly not in the near simultaneous way as depicted in Trek.
     
  14. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Premium Member

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    breakthrough in near-real-time translation

    that's pretty big. It will take years to get the latency down to milliseconds.

    Microsoft shows off real-time translation
    November 9, 2012
    http://www.tgdaily.com/software-features/67395-microsoft-shows-off-real-time-translation
    there is a video at the link demonstrating it..skip to 7:15 in the video for real-time speech-to-text foreign language tranlation.
    at 7:35 the audio starts. 20 second delay.

    this is an update on the March 2012 article as it mentions
    Microsoft's chief research officer Rick Rashid in both articles.

     
  15. Venardhi

    Venardhi Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I've used Google's voice translate for such conversations. It is surprisingly good according to the bilingual friends I tested it with.