It was only a matter of time, wasn’t it? Star Trek’s universal translator is about to become a reality thanks to Microsoft, which has announced that it has developed a system that automatically translates documents from one language into as many as 7,000 other languages -- though we somehow doubt that Klingon will be among them (at least early on). The company’s Translator Hub – introduced at their TechFest 2012 event last week -- will help multinational businesses operate more economically and efficiently. According to Information Week, it relies on a translation engine on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform and also user input. Users begin by feeding paired documents that have already been translated from one language into another language into the engine, and the Translator Hub takes over from there, automatically “learning” to translate after processing the translation examples. Microsoft Translator Hub can be used free of charge in the cloud.

Meanwhile, also during the TechFest 2012 at the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Washington, Microsoft unveiled something dubbed Monolingual TTS. The system even more closely resembles the Star Trek universal translator, as it enables users to talk into a device in any of 26 pre-installed languages and have their speech read back in another language.

Click HERE to read the full article in Information Week.

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