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An excuse to drop French class?

Google’s new glasses will translate on screen


 

Antonio Zugaldia/Wikimedia Commons

A developer in the U.K. says that new technology could make foreign language classes obsolete.

He’s talking about Project Glass, Google’s upcoming augmented reality glasses. While wearing the glasses, an interface hovers in your field of view and interacts with the world around you while also performing the kinds of tasks that smart phones handle.

In other words, the glasses will give you a viewpoint that’s much like what a T-800 from Terminator would see (but hopefully with better app. support).

With one of the wealthiest companies venturing into Skynet territory, people are excited by the possibilities. I mean, you’ll basically be wearing The Matrix on your face. They’re also throwing around a lot of conspiracy theories.

Will Powell, a computer programmer, is planning a less sinister app. That is, assuming you’re not a foreign languages teacher. It’s capable of translating real-time conversations, providing the user with subtitles in the interface of the glasses. He says it could make language courses obsolete.

Why would anyone learn a new language if they can just pop on a pair of glasses?

Well, a couple reasons. The glasses will reportedly cost $1,500 and who knows how well they’re work? I’d say you’re better off keeping French in your timetable, at least in the foreseeable future.

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An excuse to drop French class?

  1. Let us hope that these “glasses” are better than Google translate into French – Whereas Google into English does a decent job, much of what the Google French translation is pure gibberish and, mostly incomprehensible or at best somewhat (barely) understandable. Nothing like a good language course to REALLY understand what is being said!

  2. These sound like great, albeit predictable, features for the upcoming ‘Project Glass’ goggles.

    I also think that QR Codes will benefit to – just glance at the QR code in the corner of a movie poster, for instance, and it can automatically load up the film’s trailer video or the official website with more info about that flick.

    However the technology being proposed here (language translation) already exists.

    Apple devices can install “Word Lens” apps for $5 that will translate written words – ie. a menu or a what’s written on a sign – right onto the screen.
    http://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/word-lens/id383463868?mt=8

    And Android mobile devices can download ‘Google Translate’ for free which, among many other features, enables you to “Communicate with another person using speech-to-speech translation in Conversation Mode (ALPHA, 14 languages)”
    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.translate

    ‘Project Glass’ will make this more convenient – but it will be evolutionary, not revolutionary, when it comes to mobile translation imo.

  3. Good News ! Now the Canadian Goverenment can cancel the discriminatory Official Bilingualism policy brought in by the 3#%^&*5 Liberals !

  4. I agree with above comment. Presently there is no dictionary or web site that translates English as spoken in Canada to French as spoken in Canada. I’ve been looking for one for weeks.

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