Sci-Fi to Sci-Fact: Universal Translator

Three years ago when Microsoft acquired Skype for the amazing sum of $8.5 billion (with a B) (USD) the Bill Gates company promised to take the online ‘telephone conferencing’ service in directions never dreamed possible. It would appear that it has begun doing just that.

At this year’s Code Conference Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was on hand to give witness to a new Skype innovation of technology, something quite familiar to Star Trek fans, the universal translator. While not christening it with that name Nadella came close with the title Skype Translator.

This new video and audio conferencing tool will allow those who speak different languages to communicate with one another in their native tongue while Skype Translator, in real time, will translate the conversation into whatever language the recipient desires. Nadella claims the conversations between different language speaking participants should flow easily as if they were all speaking the same language. If what Nadella promises truly pans out this feat will be nothing short of fantastic and very, very impressive given all the various nuances and shades of meaning many words have in the over 180 languages spoken in the world.

Of those 180 languages Microsoft is still mum on just how many different languages are currently available in the new Skype Translator, so to say we are at the Star Trek Universal Translator stage may still be a bit premature, however, it looks like the tech-guru’s of our modern society are well on their way.

I wonder if it will be programmed for Klingon or Dothraki?

Check out this cool video for the Skype Translator unveil:


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