“The Pilot” will hit the shelves in September and retail for $129
From Gene Roddenberry in Star Trek to Douglas Adams in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, anyone who spends much time forecasting the future comes to realize that language has simply got to go. In a connected world, it’s one of the only things remaining that truly separates us — it’s what keeps keeps us from being able to directly consume and understand one another’s film and literature, and what keeps occupying soldiers from being able to effectively make alliances with local peoples. It’s a primitive relic of a bygone age — if we can convert MP4 to AVI, certainly we ought to be able to convert Mandarin to German. Now, a new device called Pilot could make that dream (mostly) a reality.A real-world Babelfish, or Universal Translator if you prefer, has been slow to materialize.
We’ve got speech recognition, and we’ve got translation, and we’ve even got both of those things in real-time in some very specific cases, but a portable, near-real-time translation device that moves with you? Despite rumors of GoogleX super-projects, it hasn’t happened yet.