Genuine language translation has been one of the Holy Grails of DARPA research for decades, as it would vastly simplify military and humanitarian operations abroad and otherwise bridge the gaps between cultures made persistent by an inability to communicate. Now, rather than banking on some kind of handheld universal translator device (very Star Trek) DARPA wants an thinking robot that can interpret various languages and make decisions about what it hears (very Star Wars).
Or, as Danger Room puts it, DARPA wants a C-3PO. DARPA's Broad Operational Language Translation (BOLT) program doesn't necessarily seek a shiny gold humanoid, but it does ask for a 'bot capable of both human-machine interaction and of enabling human-human interaction by acting as an intermediary interpreter.
The machine is also expected to be "genre-independent," meaning it can translate language regardless of medium, be it causally spoken words, text messaging, email, etc. But its C-3PO-like qualities wouldn't end there. What separates BOLT from handheld translators that have been tried before is the introduction of visual and tactile inputs that would "give them the ability to hypothesize and perform automated reasoning in the acquired language."
As a benchmark for that kind of ability, DARPA wants would-be BOLT submissions to demonstrate the ability to recognize 250 objects and "understand the consequences (pre-state and post-state) of 100 actions so that it can execute complex commands with 90% completion rate."
Basically DARPA doesn't just want a translator, but a useful robotic assistant that doesn't just take verbal cues but also accounts for visual and tactile stimuli as well. Such a robot wouldn't just serve as a battlefield translator, but also a parser of complex information streams (like intel dumps gathered from a hard-drive or off the Web) in different languages and dialects.
Besides, who else on the battlefield can quickly figure the odds of successfully navigating an asteroid field?
I want to be a trillionaire.
The seeker of knowledge who seeks to reach beyond the stars to go where no mans gone before to see things no man has seen and bring these experiences back for the whole world to hear and see.
very ambiguwuse. nice but thats a tall order where are getting technologically advanced but not advanced. nock to pea esdopas loc tay dempa del peunga rur sonran ter raar .
Translate that then we will talk
so basically, mix c-3po with watson and uve got a perfect translator bot
so good, I almost forgot the article lol
A protocol droid. BRILLIANT! I live in Japan and didnt speak a word when I moved over here. I can speak a little now but it is VERY far from fluent. I use dictionaries, and web translators, human translators, all the cool Google apps (google translate and World Lens). Its rough. its tough. its ugly. From print to print its nearly impossible when using languages as different as Japanese and English. When talking with a human you can use write, speak, make gestures. Communication is only 30% verbal. A robot or (protocol droid) can better employ the other 70%. Look at the robots they are making now with facial expressions. Communication is SO many different things and extremely complicated. We will never see a star trek like device work well in the field becuase it too limited to do any real translation.
Are we talking about an actual droid that can walk and talk along with the troops? How about a power source and spare parts for it? When the RPG and AK47 rounds start whizzing overhead and the troops have to run for cover, will it look around clumsily and ask "oh dear me, how rude of everyone to leave!" A small chest pack device linked to a tiny helmet-mounted camera might be more practical. If you can build a robot with enough combat smarts not to be a liability in the field, translation ability would be the least of the achievements.
I dont look busy because I did it right the first time
For one a actual robot would have much more room to have its computing power then a small chest pack device. I think this is a one step at a time thing first step see if someone can make a working prototype. If someone can get it to work properly then you worry about what situations it will be exposed to if it needs armor that type stuff. But right off the bat Im thinking humanitarian missions locals of whatever country being able to ask it questions and simple ones it being able to answer it self. Or it being to work as a middle man/women/thing translating between people. Then maybe if they get all that working they could actually use a soldier as its eyes and ears with a data link back to the computer a soldier could wear a microphone a camera and a headset to hear the translation. That would do away with having to have robots by having a computer at the base station. But anything a soldier has to carry adds more weight and all that stuff uses power which means batteries and they would half to have spare batteries which is more weight. Todays soldiers carry incredible amounts of weight already so to carry new stuff they would probably have to not carry something else. Say maybe leave with a couple less clips of ammo or something else important they dont carry stuff they dont need. So a self sufficient system would be a plus heck maybe it could carry some of there gear for them :).
I'm very skeptical about any computer translation of human speech. There are probably almost an infinite number of combinations possible, including slang, regional differences, pronunciation, etc.
Just take google translator as an example.
"el vino tinto de tu tia Maria esta bien amargo y sabe muy bien con el quesillo humedo de mi abuelita."
English from www.translate.google.com:
"red wine in your Aunt Mary is extremely bitter and tastes great with cheese wet my grandmother"
"Your aunt Maria's red wine is quite bitter and tastes very good with my grandmother's moist "Quesillo" cheese."