Google Translate is a very powerful and useful tool which has been getting better over time. The service can be used to translate text, spoken words or sentences and more recently, it can scan text from images or videos and translate it in real time. Google Translate is available in a variety of platforms, it’s even integrated into some browsers and part of the reason the translations are getting better or more accurate is because, in addition to improving the algorithms that make these translations, Google allows users who speak certain languages natively to contribute with translations of some regional expressions. Today, Google is adding support for an additional 13 languages, so now there are over 100 languages to choose from.
The 13 new languages are Amharic, Corsican, Frisian, Kyrgyz, Hawaiian, Kurdish (Kurmanji), Luxembourgish, Samoan, Scots Gaelic, Shona, Sindhi, Pashto and Xhosa. So now, the 103 languages available cover 99% of the online population and with the combinations of the new languages, over an additional 120 million people could get benefitted and communicate with those speaking different languages. Adding new languages might seem like an easy task, but Google chooses those languages which can be written and they make sure that a significant amount of translations is already available online. Then, a combination of machine learning, licensed content and the Google Translate Community makes it possible to add the language.
From the translated text available, machine learning is used to identify patterns and “learn” about them. The growing Translate Community, which now has over 3 million people contributing, can help improve some translations. Currently, the Translate Community has corrected over 200 million translated words. If you want to become part of the Translate Community, just visit translate.google.com and you’ll see a button for joining in. Then, you get to choose the languages that you speak and Google will show some phrases to translate or you can validate some of the available translations. You may also make suggestions if the translated phrase is not very accurate or sounds out of context, once you’ve identified it, just click the “Suggest an edit” button. The update will start rolling out in the coming days.