“Essentially it’s a Babel fish, though admittedly a rough draft of one.”

Real-time translation

#Technology

Wed, Aug 2nd, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

TechCrunch looks at the WT2, a real-time translation tool that works in conjuction with your phone. Each person puts on an earpiece and the device is able to let two people speaking completely different languages to communicate with each other.

Right now the device is very much a prototype, although the design and chipset used are more or less final. It fit pretty well in my ear, just like you’d expect a bulkier-than-usual Bluetooth headset to.

But it worked quite well, as long as you keep your translation expectations realistic — complex speech and idiom don’t survive quick machine translation, but you can still get a lot across. The main issue I had was with the latency, which left Wells and I staring at each other silently for a three count while the app did its work. But the version I used wasn’t optimized for latency, and the team is hard at work reducing it.

“We’re trying to shorten the latency to 1-3 seconds, which needs lots of work in optimization of the whole process of data transmission between the earphones, app and server,” Wells said.

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