Did you know the British are the world’s most enthusiastic online shoppers? They make 13.5% of purchases online – the most of any major economy. And this is expected to soar to 23% by 2016, according to research by the Boston Consulting Group. The “internet economy” was worth £121 billion in 2010, or £2000 for each person in the country.
The spa town of Wiesbaden in Germany is best known for its natural hot springs and historic buildings. But for thousands of technical writers, translators, and marketing managers there’s another major attraction – the world’s biggest industry conference in October.
Dancing robots, eye-activated televisions, ultra-thin tablets, super-connected homes… it can only be IFA 2012, the world’s biggest consumer goods showcase. The Berlin trade fair gives a glimpse of the future of technology and how it could change our lives in the next few years.
Machine translation has made huge advances since scientists laboriously punched Russian words into “electronic translators” in the 1950s. But the dream of the “universal translator” is still a long way off – creating plenty of opportunities for amusing slip-ups and linguistic faux pas.
Imagine if you could instantly connect your website with thousands of translators around the world. Ordering and receiving translations is as simple as just clicking a button. And you don’t need to worry about the quality – all the translators are fully-qualified with specialist experience.
The concept of the Universal Translator has been a staple of science fiction for decades. It’s almost always used as device to solve the rather pesky problem of having to understand all alien life forms without much effort.
Digital technology is changing our lives – at home, at work, and at leisure. If you’re looking for a glimpse of what everyday life will be like in the next decade, IFA 2012 in Berlin is the place to start. There may be a lack of flying cars and holograms, but there are fascinating examples of the upcoming must-have consumer trends.
On Google Translate’s sixth birthday this month, its developers had plenty of reasons to celebrate. Two hundred million in fact: that’s the number of people who use its free international language services each month.
Many of us have ripped open the packaging, pulled out the shiny new mobile phone or laptop, and started using it right away. It’s only when we hit a metaphorical brick wall that we turn to the user manual – or try to find instructions online.