Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Translating Human

I don’t understand what you said.

Fortunately for me, I have help “translating” what you said (or, more accurately, wrote) – thanks to “tech” and the Internet.

Do not get me wrong, I do not use these services very often (most people communicate to me in fairly decent English) but when I need them, I need them. If you know what I mean.

When I run across a phrase, or some website, so rude as to be in some language other than American English, I first go to Babel Fish. Babel Fish allows me to ‘paste’ up to 150 words into the ‘translator box’, choose my language – to – English (in my case) conversion, and – click – I will instantly have a rough idea of what’s being said. Or I can enter a website’s URL, and the whole page will be ‘converted’.
I have yet to try using Google’s Goggles app on my ‘droid (see, Does Your Android Wear Goggles?)

When someone is using American English, but their choice of phrase or colloquialism (“expression”) is unfamiliar to me (maybe because I don’t get out enough..) I use one of three ‘options’:
* if I suspect the phrase is young and hip ‘street talk’ or popular slang, I go straight to the Urban Dictionary.
* if I suspect the phrase is regional, or from an era before my time, I look in
* [Parents take note] if I am asked to decipher a teenager’s chat ‘texting’ (more accurately, “lingo”) – which is deliberately not meant for adults to understand – I use either Lingo2Word, which is a ‘paste in’ instant translator very much like Babel Fish, or which has the same tool as well as a dictionary. NoSlang is a bit more comprehensive.. it includes “net speak” (Internet slang).
Bonus Quick link: 25 Internet Slang Terms All Parents Should Know)

And last but not least.. I can ‘Google it’.

I think, out of all of those.. I use Urban Dictionary the most. But I am not a parent. If I were, I would bookmark NoSlang…

Today’s free link: Download FREE Microsoft Office Training Manuals and Quick Reference Guides

Most people only know the basics of this powerful Office Suite and only challenge themselves to learn more when the the environment they are working in demands its. Any edge you can get to make your job easier, with Microsoft Office, can pay dividends in the end; not only for you, but for those you are working for.

Bonus bonus: Take a look at Google today. They have one of their “artsy” name mods up…

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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March 31, 2011 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Internet | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Does Your Android Wear Goggles?

Phones That Can See, Read, and Translate (aka “My Phone Is Smarter Than Me”.)

Here’s how it works:
* Point your phone at a word or phrase. Use the region of interest button to draw a box around specific words
* Press the shutter button
* If Goggles recognizes the text, it will give you the option to translate
* Press the translate button to select the source and destination languages.

Wow. Could I have uses that French class.

JBondWhat am I talking about? Google Goggles is an “mobile app” that combines OCR (optical character recognition) with Google’s ability to translate languages — which gives your phone’s camera the ability to read French (for example), and tell you what that item on the menu is (for example).

Is this something out of James Bond fiction? Nope. Just another example of The Future Is Here Now.

Google Goggles (currently) requires Android 1.6, and “can read English, French, Italian, German and Spanish and can translate to many more languages.” To find out more, see, Official Google Mobile Blog: Translate the real world with Google Goggles.

… eventually, we will all be wearing OCR cameras (maybe built into eyeglasses), and have Wi Fi/4G wireless transponders (woven into our clothes?), and have chips in our brain which contain dictionaries of all known languages… and using a phone to translate a foreign language sentence will seem quaint. Like Atari’s Pong.
But that’s probably 20 years off. In the meantime, there’s Google Goggles.


Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.

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May 8, 2010 Posted by | computers, Digital camera, gadgets, Google, mobile, News, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Deciphering Texting (aka "Lingo")*

Folks– obligations require a re-posting today.

I have an embarrassing confession to make–I don’t always know how to translate what someone has text-ed into English. I need a Text-to-English dictionary. This is just one more fact, added to an already long list of facts, that tells me I’ve gotten old. We didn’t Avoid have ‘texting’ when I was a teenager.

At first, I thought texting (aka “lingo”) was simply X-treme Abbreviation. And then, I thought it might be a combination of vanity license-plate Language and X-Abbreviation. This thinking allowed me to read some of what I saw, but not all. I could decipher “gr8″ and “l8r”, but not “ttyl”. It didn’t help that I wasn’t a “text-er” myself (Use a cell phone and give myself ear cancer? Not this fella!).

And then it dawned on me– these kids are using an Adult-proof secret code. They don’t want me to decipher it. The world suddenly made a lot more sense. When I was a lad, my friends and I had used code too.

Fortunately, there are resources available for those of us who are lingo-challenged. If you see “A/S/L”, but don’t understand what it means, you can find out (age/sex/location?) — and if you are a parent concerned about your child and what they’re doing and saying on the Internet and in chatrooms — I suggest you do.

If you’re like me, and just want to learn, and try to increase your “hipness” quotient (or just avoid some terrible faux pas), you will also find these translation resources useful and interesting. My favorite of these online dictionaries is Lingo2Word. With it, you can paste in text, and have it automatically deciphered for you.

Related link: Lingo2Word. “Lingo2word is devoted to demystifying the new Internet shorthand language of Text messages, Chat rooms and Emails. We are devoted to the fun of text messaging in all forms, there is a whole new fun language out there just waiting for you!”

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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October 26, 2009 Posted by | advice, cellular, computers, how to, kids and the Internet, tech | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment