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Thursday, May 26, 2005


Google Translator: The Universal Language

Here is some really interesting machine learning. Google took all of the UN's translated documents and fed it to a statistical engine of some sort. Now that engine can translate between all of the UN languages with fairly high accuracy.

Google Translator: The Universal Language

I am curious about how this would handle colloquial use of language. My guess is not terribly well, without enough input data to chew on. I can imagine this type of database being grown organically though, with people translating the occasional document or snippet in their spare time, or as needed. What sort of statistical strength piecemeal (and potentially low-quality) translations would have is debatable, though. It may be that a rigorous and repeated approach such as what the UN needs to take with all of their documents would be needed.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005



Proof that people will find a way to abuse any technology given half a chance.

Computer users anxious about viruses and identity theft have a new reason to worry: hackers have found a way to lock up the electronic documents on your computer and then demand a ransom for their return.

Hacker holds computer files hostage

Tuesday, May 24, 2005


It always helps if the damn thing is plugged in.

Yeah. It might seem obvious, but time and again, I find myself banging my head because I didn't think to check that first.

Monday, May 23, 2005


Never too young for a copyright lesson

Good fun. 6th graders getting lectured about file-sharing.

Never too young for a copyright lesson | CNET News.com