Tuesday, 16 December 2014


That still leaves the wetware problem

One of the many problems faced by Conductive Education (not uniquely) has been that so many people speak and read only one language. Machine translation of written speech is available free over the Internet for many languages and, used sensibly, can offer a remarkable liberation. I know that a growing number or people in Conductive Education are willing to give it a try. It is still far from perfect but it makes a significant start.

But what about oral (spoken) speech. Microsoft recently bought Skype, and Windows 8 provides a somewhat simplified Skype service. You lose some and you win some. Today Microsoft has announced another remarkable step into a technological future once seemingly a matter only of fantasy fiction, instant access to translation of spoken conversation, on line and for free –
Skype Translator is a brand-new experience from Skype, and it’s still learning and improving the way it translates calls. As a preview user of Skype Translator you’ll be instrumental in helping us refine the technology and bring us closer to our goal of overcoming language barriers worldwide. Even the smallest conversations help Skype Translator learn and grow, which can enrich your communication and lead to amazing things.

This is presently available only between English and Spanish and no doubt there will be some hilarious misunderstandings. But another frontier in communication has been breeched and things will surely get better. Not as much fun as sticking a Babel fish in your ear but on the right track. Let's see now what Google comes up with!

Then all that you will need is something to say.

In the meantime, you can register immediately to be a preview user and try this out for yourself:


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