skype translator

Skype Translator



sci-fi live (2) as you can see
launch what’s up Christmas Eve
salmon instantly sooner or later
reality translator vice versa
bit (2) trial (2) spend/spent/spent (2)
eve complex


Video: Skype Translation




The idea of live translations from one language to another has always been a bit of a sci-fi dream.

But now it could become a reality.

Skype has just launched something called “translator”. It’s a trial product at the moment; it only does English to Spanish and vice versa.

I’m going to give it a try and see how it works.

Journalist: “Hello. How are you, Maria? Good morning from London.”
Maria: “Hey Rory. I’m very well. What’s up?”
Journalist: “The weather’s lovely here today. I see you cat has just walked past the camera. That is interesting. What’s your cat called?”
Maria: “My cat is called “What has appeared in the wrong time”.
Journalist: “In London we’re just getting ready for Christmas. I’m going to spend Christmas at home and I’m going to be cooking a turkey. What about you?”
Maria: “On Christmas eve, we are going to my aunt’s house. We are all going to meet for dinner.” We are going to have salmon.”

Journalist: “Now we’re using this Skype translator service. How well is it translating my English into Spanish?”
Maria: “It’s doing pretty well, although I think it translates my Spanish better than your English.”
Journalist: “Than you Maria.”
Maria: “Many thanks to you.”

Well as you can see it’s not perfect, but it’s a huge, complex, computing task. And it will get better.

Sooner or later, we’ll be able to translate instantly without the help of a dictionary or a translation service.


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1. Until now instant, real-time translation by a computer or machine was science-fiction. Yes or no?

2. What has Skype done?

3. How did the journalist try or test the Skype translator?

4. Maria lives alone. Is this right or wrong?

5. What time of the year was this? How could you tell? How do you know?

6. Where is Rory? How is he going to spend the Christmas holiday? What is Maria going to do?

7. Skype translates all languages equally. Is this true or false? Are the translations perfect? How would you describe the translations?
A. Would the Skype translator be useful to you? If yes, how would it be useful to you?

B. Who would benefit the most from the Skype translator?

C. Are there some Luddites who are against this?

D. Would the Skype translator decrease or increase the demand for language courses, textbooks and teachers? Why?

E. What do you think will happen in the future?

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