Google adds Latin to it’s MT

acb alerts me to the fact that Google have added Latin to the list of languages available to translate between. As is his way, the analysis is that wonderful mix of smart and funny:

In other words, while Latin is a dead language, and few if any people are going to send emails (orĀ nuntios electronicos, as the Romans would have called them), the translator is useful because of the vast number of books wholly or partly in Latin. And, while there is little new Latin text to train the engine on, there is a huge repository of existing Latin texts and translations, of varying antiquity, many of which Google have digitised. Which works quite adequately for translating the sorts of things likely to have been written in Latin.

Sadly, the same can’t be said for Google’s English-to-Latin translation; at the moment, for a lot of inputs, it seems to do little more than change the order of the words around, getting stumped on words like, say, “translate” and “Latin”.

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