Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Translation

Uni translates sign language to sound and text

People who are deaf or hard of hearing are constantly met with the challenge of communicating, since most non-deaf people don't understand sign language. But modern technology is once again offering new solutions for old issues, and this time it comes in the shape of Uni, which uses motion gesture recognition to translate sign language to audio, and spoken word to text, in real time.  Read More

Skype Translator recognizes and translates different languages and could give new meaning ...

Not content with enabling free, cross-continental video conversations, Microsoft has now moved to break down language barriers and make conversing with our international friends even more convenient. The company has unveiled Skype Translator, an application for its chat software that translates speech between different languages in (almost) real time.  Read More

Globr is an instant messaging app that allows speakers of different languages to chat

The internet has connected and flattened the world in ways previously unimaginable. Coupled with ever more seamless translation tools, it provides the ability to communicate across borders and languages. Now, a new instant messaging tool is looking to make communication for speakers of different languages even easier.  Read More

A still from the demonstration video, which shows how Sigmo could work in the real world

The internet and smartphones have made it much easier to converse with people who speak different languages to you, with services using these technologies providing both instant text-to-speech and speech-to-speech translation options. Sigmo, a simple Bluetooth device which uses existing online translation services to translate from one language to the other and back again in real-time, is designed to be the middleman in the equation, thus removing the need to constantly shove your smartphone in people's faces.  Read More

British computer programmer Will Powell has created a prototype real-time translation syst...

Inspired by the Google's Project Glass, computer programmer Will Powell has built a prototype real-time translation system that listens to speech, translates it into one of 37 languages, and then displays the resulting text as subtitles directly onto the user's glasses.  Read More

The EnableTalk gloves feature a variety of sensors that allow the system to recognize sign...

Since beginning in 2003, the Microsoft Imagine Cup has tasked students the world over with developing technology aimed at solving real-world problems. In this, its 10th year, students were asked to build their project around a specific Millennium Development Goal (MDG), with the finals held this month in Sydney, Australia. The winners have just been announced and beating out teams from 75 countries to claim first place (and US$25,000) in the Software Design category was the Ukraine’s quadSquad with their EnableTalk gloves that translate sign language into speech in real time.  Read More

Entering names and places in the Lonely Planet Offline Translator helps the speech recogni...

Lonely Planet Publications published its first travel guide in 1973 and has been giving travelers a helping hand on their journeys ever since, growing to become the largest travel guide book company in the world. In 2009, the company dropped the “Publications” from its name to reflect the move to digital products, including its website and smartphone apps. Now the company’s wide selection of city guide and phrasebook apps have been joined by a family of translator apps that allow users to obtain written and – thanks to speech recognition technology – spoken translations offline.  Read More

Purdue University's new app could keep unsuspecting travelers from ordering dishes such as...

Once when I was visiting Montreal, I went into a restaurant and discovered that the menu was entirely in French. Not wanting to admit that I couldn’t read the language, I was instead forced to order the only two things I recognized the names of: Caesar salad and calamari. Had smartphones been around at the time, I definitely could have used Purdue University’s new food translator app. It not only translates the names of foreign-language dishes, but it also tells you what they are and what’s in them.  Read More

Penpower Technology has released an iPhone app which uses the device's camera and Google's...

Whether browsing through the latest technology news, following the exploits of your favorite musician or film star or looking up exotic holiday destinations, chances are you will bump into a language that's not your own. Thanks to online translation services, most of us can usually get the gist of what's going on, but there are occasions when typing a word into a translation box is just not convenient. Penpower Technology has an alternative solution in the form of an application that uses the camera on the iPhone and Google's translation service to offer instant word translation and definition.  Read More

Phrazer is a handheld medical communicator that identifies a patient's native language and...

With over 170 languages spoken in the U.S. alone, medical personnel attending an emergency or working in a busy hospital are no doubt often faced with communication problems when trying to dispense treatment. The Phrazer offers a possible solution to this problem. It is billed as the world's first multilingual communication system, where patients provide medical background information, symptoms or complaints with the help of a virtual onscreen doctor speaking in their own native tongue. This information is then summarized into a medical record compatible with all major EMR systems.  Read More

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