A good op-ed in this Sunday’s NY Times on Google Translate, the latest version of machine-based language translation. Although past approaches (based on breaking every language into lexicon and grammar) have been laughable–anybody who’s used Babelfish knows that–I’d agree there’s some promise in the statistical approach outlined in the piece.
Spend time on any Latin Language message board and you’ll see more than a few threads dedicated to translating some short English phrase (usually for a tattoo). I usually treat these as interesting discussion ideas; the better ones inevitably become far more interesting than whatever “correct” translation they yield. Still, if you were wondering, Google Translate doesn’t support Latin yet, so there’s still plenty to discuss…
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