Star Trek Universal translator built

Microsoft has been showing off a Star Trek style universal translator.

The system uses voice recognition and text-to-speech software, in one tool that can be used to easily communicate with folks who don’t speak the same language as you.

OK it is not a hundred percent yet because human speech, as opposed to that of badgers, is somewhat complicated and has different syntax and grammar.

It will be a long time before you’ll be able to have a natural conversation with someone of a foreign language using any gear that might have come from Redmond, but you could at least use it to do some basic stuff such as “please don’t kill me” and “put down that machete” which is always useful.

There are a large number of technological devices which can be identified as coming from ideas seen in Star Trek. The tablet which looks like a clip board, the mobile phone, and the tendency for people who wear red jackets to die in mysterious circumstances. We still have not worked out how to conduct operations with a torch, travel at warp speed, or meet any beautiful green alien women and have sex with them. [Well you haven’t Nick. Ed.]