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Skype Translator Enables Students Speaking Different Languages To Communicate

Skype Translator Enables Students Speaking Different Languages To Communicate

We have an astounding 7.29 billion people populating our little blue planet at the moment, and while this means that we have pretty much developed to a point where no natural predators or disasters can truly threaten our society, it also means that we have to start developing into a global civilization. To achieve this, we must first work on improving communication across continents and nations. Skype has proven to be an excellent tool for connecting people from across the globe, allowing free sharing of information on a very personal level.

It is a very secure and reliable platform that has given many of us some unique opportunities in both our professional and our personal lives, but Skype is now coming out with some truly revolutionary tools. The new Skype Translator will allow direct translation between different languages. The idea is to allow two people to speak or type in their native language and have it automatically translated to the other person’s language.

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Now, this isn’t just talk or a cool idea to look forward to – the Skype Translator preview will launch later this year and will only initially offer Spanish and English, with other options quickly following. You can register here to give it a shot, and become a part of the cultural renaissance. Skype will invite a limited amount of people to use this preview and help them put the polishing touches on their Skype Translator.

So, how does it work?

It is actually quite simple. Everything you say is translated into another language (currently only available between English and Spanish), and the person you are talking to hears everything in their own language, spoken by the characteristic computer generated voice. There is also a transcription of everything that is said, in both languages. You can also use this option for sending instant messages in over 40 different languages. The software used can actually learn to provide better translations through use, so with time we can expect some very accurate translating with minimal processing time.

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The setup is quick and easy – you just chose your friend’s spoken and written language, and you can start chatting – and the Skype Translator has already been tested by schoolchildren form the US and Mexico, who have had a great time making friends and learning about another culture.

The implications of this technology and what we can expect in the future

With near instant translation at our disposal, and with advanced computer learning software that can pick up on subtleties related to meaning with extended use, it will be easier than ever for people from different cultures to exchange experiences, learn together and develop emotional connections. It will certainly make a huge impact on the business world, improving the communication between the business representative and an overseas client or between company branches form different parts of the world.

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However, the most important benefit will be that we will be able to learn more about other cultures. As information on how people live across the world becomes more accessible, through firsthand accounts no less, we will develop a much more realistic picture on the state the world is in.

Not merely relying on news and mostly erroneous claims found on the internet, will help us open up to different cultures. While we can’t change human nature, and there will always be some bad people around, studies have shown that people growing up in racially diverse communities are much more comfortable dealing with people from different cultural backgrounds – which means that children growing up in a world where you can freely communicate face-to-face with other children from all over the globe will be able to work towards creating a true global civilization, where notions of racism and xenophobia won’t have much of an impact on society.

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Of course, we will have to wait and see how this technology develops, but it is a very big step forward that can lead us to great things.

More by this author

Ivan Dimitrijevic

Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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Last Updated on May 14, 2019

8 Replacements for Google Notebook

8 Replacements for Google Notebook

Exploring alternatives to Google Notebook? There are more than a few ‘notebooks’ available online these days, although choosing the right one will likely depend on just what you use Google Notebook for.

  1. Zoho Notebook
    If you want to stick with something as close to Google Notebook as possible, Zoho Notebook may just be your best bet. The user interface has some significant changes, but in general, Zoho Notebook has pretty similar features. There is even a Firefox plugin that allows you to highlight content and drop it into your Notebook. You can go a bit further, though, dropping in any spreadsheets or documents you have in Zoho, as well as some applications and all websites — to the point that you can control a desktop remotely if you pare it with something like Zoho Meeting.
  2. Evernote
    The features that Evernote brings to the table are pretty great. In addition to allowing you to capture parts of a website, Evernote has a desktop search tool mobil versions (iPhone and Windows Mobile). It even has an API, if you’ve got any features in mind not currently available. Evernote offers 40 MB for free accounts — if you’ll need more, the premium version is priced at $5 per month or $45 per year. Encryption, size and whether you’ll see ads seem to be the main differences between the free and premium versions.
  3. Net Notes
    If the major allure for Google Notebooks lays in the Firefox extension, Net Notes might be a good alternative. It’s a Firefox extension that allows you to save notes on websites in your bookmarks. You can toggle the Net Notes sidebar and access your notes as you browse. You can also tag websites. Net Notes works with Mozilla Weave if you need to access your notes from multiple computers.
  4. i-Lighter
    You can highlight and save information from any website while you’re browsing with i-Lighter. You can also add notes to your i-Lighted information, as well as email it or send the information to be posted to your blog or Twitter account. Your notes are saved in a notebook on your computer — but they’re also synchronized to the iLighter website. You can log in to the site from any computer.
  5. Clipmarks
    For those browsers interested in sharing what they find with others, Clipmarks provides a tool to select clips of text, images and video and share them with friends. You can easily syndicate your finds to a whole list of sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Digg. You can also easily review your past clips and use them as references through Clipmarks’ website.
  6. UberNote
    If you can think of a way to send notes to UberNote, it can handle it. You can clip material while browsing, email, IM, text message or even visit the UberNote sites to add notes to the information you have saved. You can organize your notes, tag them and even add checkboxes if you want to turn a note into some sort of task list. You can drag and drop information between notes in order to manage them.
  7. iLeonardo
    iLeonardo treats research as a social concern. You can create a notebook on iLeonardo on a particular topic, collecting information online. You can also access other people’s notebooks. It may not necessarily take the place of Google Notebook — I’m pretty sure my notes on some subjects are cryptic — but it’s a pretty cool tool. You can keep notebooks private if you like the interface but don’t want to share a particular project. iLeonardo does allow you to follow fellow notetakers and receive the information they find on a particular topic.
  8. Zotero
    Another Firefox extension, Zotero started life as a citation management tool targeted towards academic researchers. However, it offers notetaking tools, as well as a way to save files to your notebook. If you do a lot of writing in Microsoft Word or Open Office, Zotero might be the tool for you — it’s integrated with both word processing software to allow you to easily move your notes over, as well as several blogging options. Zotero’s interface is also available in more than 30 languages.

I’ve been relying on Google Notebook as a catch-all for blog post ideas — being able to just highlight information and save it is a great tool for a blogger.

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In replacing it, though, I’m starting to lean towards Evernote. I’ve found it handles pretty much everything I want, especially with the voice recording feature. I’m planning to keep trying things out for a while yet — I’m sticking with Google Notebook until the Firefox extension quits working — and if you have any recommendations that I missed when I put together this list, I’d love to hear them — just leave a comment!

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