How Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence has changed Language Industry

What do you make of it when you hear the word— sense organ?


Well, even a kindergarten student could point at all the sense organs as our basic upbringing deals with identifying the most critical organs in our bodies.


But why do I talk about them?


Probably because when I was learning about the sense organs in our bodies, a parallel bunch of people in different parts of the world was experimenting ideas to mount these sense organs into the objects and computers.


Didn’t understand?


Here’s the long explanation… Answer yourself… What’s the primary role of sense organs in our bodies? To feel, to distinguish tastes, to vision and envision, to lend ears, and to sense the smell.


Our five basic senses are a kind of sensors which receive the data from the surrounding, interpret the data into information, and collaborate with our cognitive abilities to give the final output, i.e., the above mentioned sensory perceptions.


We use these outputs to interact with the fellow-beings— the beings with similar kind of sensors in their bodies.


Anything which possess one of these sensory capabilities or all of them could just clear the criteria of being called as a “living object (that sounds like an oxymoron, but humanity is inching close to it),” be it humans, animals, birds, plants, or OBJECTS (Yes, you read it right).


Now, just think of a scenario… You are sleeping. Your wristwatch measures your sleep pulse and the heart rate, and examine how good you dozed off. In case of negative readings, your watch buzzes you the alarming sound. Moreover, it sends the information to your cardiologist who keeps his arrangement ready to evaluate your medical condition. Or when you wake up the next morning, your lights get dimmed off automatically. Watch sends the heart-rate to your refrigerator, and it suggests you the best meal.


The scenario depicts how the interaction between the different machines could save lives.


But how is that possible?


Let me burst the clouds of doubts.


In the case mentioned above, the machines (smart watches) are gathering vital data about your body and distributing them to other computers (fridge, cardiologist devices, etc.)


That’s only possible with the help of two of the latest researched fads in modern computer science, i.e., machine learning and artificial intelligence.


The branch concerns with adding these basic sense organs into the machines


The idea of machine learning is to make our machines smart enough to capture the raw data, communicate with each other, and necessitate them for human use.


Short explanation… just as we have sensory organs to communicate, we are making way for the sensory organs of the objects, machines, computers, etc. so that they could also communicate without human intervention.


The past and the future


Several books, animation, and film industries have shown some of the most fanciful ideas related to the said technology— thanks to the shows like The Jetson (the maid cum robot), Small Wonder (the home robot); movies such as 2001: Space Odyssey (the idea of Facetime, iPads, and intelligent computers like HAL 9000), The Terminator (robots with mighty communicating servers); and books like Atlas Shrugged (Voice automated door), 1984 (speech to text dictation machines), etc.


The movie makers and the writers were at least half a century ahead of their generations, and their concepts are somehow pulled to reality.


Today, the industry is all set to change the dimension of how objects perceive humans and other objects.


The concept of driverless cars, automatic maids, virtual assistant, etc. get the much need boost with machine learning and AI.


But with such a massive enhancement in the automation industry, one often overlook small but vital changes in industries like food, language, travel, etc.


The introduction of machine learning and artificial intelligence could bring out the best of these industries by clustering different cultures.


Want to know how? By shaping unbreakable melting pots.


As a traveler, we often face difficulty in connecting with different cultures and languages.


Our limited knowledge about foreign language could ruin our trips and make us cancel our next foreign visits.


But, AI and ML are already acting as essential elements for strengthening the melting pot’s durability.


When it comes to making you understand the pluralistic values of a country, nothing could work as fantastic as AI and ML assistance.


Here are some anecdotes in the form of AI-based applications which validate them as one of the cultural-uniting tools.




Microsoft Translator: The application developed by the tech-giant Microsoft promotes its language translating app with the tag “let the phone do the talking.” 


Well, the quote does a massive justice considering it helps a cell phone outnumber various problems faced by the travelers. 


For the wanderers who fail to read the signboards or highway markers, all they have to do is pull out their phones and other smart devices such as tablets, etc. and place them against the boards which look nothing but gibberish to them.


The application works on the image recognition principle— where the camera learns to gather the information from the image, and translate the language in any other language.


Now, no more wrong routes, no more wrong places.


Save your time, money, and conserve energy to enjoy your trip.


The cultural perspective: Looking from the cultural point of view, your smartphones with smart Microsoft Translating application could assimilate you with an entirely alien culture.


The application empowers you to translate 60 different languages. 


That almost gives you the opportunity to familiarize with the one-third of the world.




Waygo converts: Akin to the Microsoft translating tool; it’s also a photo translator.


As a traveler, it’s always tricky to type in the foreign languages on Google search and expect the proper response.


The situation worsens when you belong to the Indo-European root, and you have to engage with the fancy and complicated tree or home-shaped logograms depicting languages like Mandarin, Korean, and Japanese.


As we are susceptible to making mistakes while putting the search strings on Google, Waygo convert comes into rescue.


The given application also works on the image or object recognition science.


Since it’s a part of computer vision, the accuracy of the translation is excellent.


As computer vision matures with each passing day in the industry, it’s expected to build a strong relationship between the “Guardians of different lands.”


The cultural perspective: Another aspect which makes the application a standout performer in the translating industry— it works offline.


Considering 50% of the world still staying aloof from the internet, the application grants you permission to visit cultures where the services haven’t democratized.


Moreover, it potentiates the window of opportunity for you to socialize with the countries which need technological reformation, and who knows, you could become their next Bill Gates?




Photo Translator: The application boasts its reach by claiming itself as the “Swiss Army Knife” of the language translation services.


It’s one of the widely used applications which has succeeded in cementing a particular position in the translating industry.


It uses the image recognition technology where it maps the texts imprinted on the image, and convert them into the required output.


A lot of travelers are multi-linguistic; however, they fail to know the girth of accent, tone, throw, and pitch of the language.


As a result, a few tonal languages could go wrong with the sentiments of the local speakers if spoken with imperfect or improper knowledge.


The Photo Translator application obliterates the necessity of human intervention, thus, minimizing the human error, and translating the input language into the more precise output.


The cultural perspective: There have been a lot of historical events where foreigners are maltreated for their wrong use of the language.


The translator could hand over the power to you for keeping coherent views to the world without offending the cultural righteousness.




Camera Translator All: As the name suggests, the application translates almost every captured image.


What does this mean to the voyagers?


The voyagers who could trample any length and breadth of the Earth to taste different cuisine can take advantage of the application.


But again, the language barrier could make it difficult for them to decode the menu not until they use the Camera Translator.


Gone are the days when trippers used to carry the photos of their wishlist items.


They apparently have to position their phones against the menu and much their favorite food items.


The given application also works on the same technology, i.e., object or image recognition.


The cultural perspective: If anything which could unite the two cultures, then it is got to be food.


And this is what defines tourism— how good is the food?


Camera Translator opens the possibility for travelers to taste right cuisine as per their taste buds, and compels them to give word of mouth publicity of the place building the strong ties between the multi-cultures.




What do AI and ML mean for Trade?


Laissez Faire Capitalism talks about how trade should be conducted smoothly without the influence of any entity like the government, or factors like demography, language barrier, etc.


But the geographic distance between the two nations has always affected the trade. 


Besides that, the language barrier diminishes trade by 50%.


Most of the international business gets confronted by these problems where there’s no direct communication between the seller and the buyer.


As there are unimaginable problems between the two entities, AI and ML chip in the perfect solution— to deplete the language barrier.


Today, the world has a plethora of platforms which convert one language into the other, and Skype Translator caters the exact service which two-dealing units need.


The implications for trade


  • The smooth trade flow: As communication is no more a constraint, the business dealers of entirely different language families could connect each other at a common junction without the need for traditional interpreters. It stashes time, money, and inflates the overall customer reach.


  • Localization: It allows store or business holders to maximize their reach globally by painting themselves locally. Localization is the next significant trend in the commercial establishment where businesses are promoted in the local culture to cement a cultural spot in the hearts of the local people.


  • Telemigration: A word coined by “Richard Baldwin” represents how a person sitting at one dimension of the globe could carry his business in the other location. It’s an international freelancing work which brings in the potpourri of like-minded people on the matchmaking platform. Everything is conducted on the platform— from work to payment, from communication to management. It makes it easier for the people to find the right match which could meet the demand of the exact service. The platforms also integrate multiple languages. So far now, English is primarily used as the professional medium; however, only 20% of the population use it. The matching platform has a variety of non-English speakers. With machine translation, a lot of people will get exposure in their fields, and the English-speaking people will directly feel the heat of the competition. As a result, talent would be the main criteria for selecting the right servicemen.


The translation accuracy


The accuracy of machine translation is imperative because a little change in perceiving the input could change the entire meaning of the sentence.


It could, in turn, raise many eyebrows and question the authenticity of the technology.


The industry measures the translation quality by an algorithm called as BLEU (the Bilingual Evaluation Understudy).


It matters because human’s translation accuracy scores up to 4.636.


The BLEU matrices check how close the machine translation is to human version of the translation.


In the past five years, Google translator BLEU score has surged from 3.694 to 4.263— a figure very close to human accuracy. 


Currently, the industry is advancing leaps and bounds, but again the accuracy of the machine translator and the accuracy of the accuracy reading matrices need a lot of research and could be disadvantageous until the score falls to its places.


One of the other main disadvantages of machine translation is “they don’t provide the optimum solution for the languages lesser known or spoken.” We at Langminds provide quality translation services in Mumbai, India.


The Good News


The world has been home to thousands of languages— from the primordial phase.


It’s practically impossible to keep all the languages alive.


Some of the stats suggest that more than 40% of the world languages are dead, and in less than a fortnight, a language dies.


With 50% of the internet content in English and Chinese, the technology is further pushing us away from the indigenous languages.


Papua New Guinea has more than 800 local languages, Australia has more than 300 languages, and what’s more saddening is— they are getting extinct at a rapid pace.


But technology takes and gives at the same time.


The scientists of ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language (CoEDL) have developed an AI-bot which stores the data of the indigenous Australian languages.


The name of the robot is Opie— the bot which has more than 40,000 hours of material.


Feeding manual data to the bot could take another 2 million staff-hours— that’s a huge number considering there aren’t many members in the research center.


However, Google has partnered with the mentioned research center so that it can effectively feed hours of data using its AI platform— TensorFlow.


The bot is getting programmed to revive these Australian languages Kriol, Mangarayi, Bininj Kunwok, Pitjantjatjara, Nakkara, Wubuy, and Warlpiri.




A fair number of people have a notion that AI and ML automation could snatch the workforce, and make them unemployed.


In my opinion, the thought is utterly repulsive.


AI and ML are the bleeding technologies, and the onus is entirely on us to balance the manual and machine work.


The machines could save you time so that you could diversify your professional repertoire.

At Langminds we are experts in providing machine and human translation services in Mumbai and other parts of the world.

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