Search engine giant Google has upgraded its ‘language translate’ feature by adding 24 languages spoken in different countries. Of the 24 languages, Google has included eight Indian languages including Sanskrit-one of the oldest languages in the world. Altogether, Google translate supports a total of 133 languages used around the globe.
What made the expansion possible is what Google is calling a “zero-shot” or “zero-resource” machine translation model — one that learns to translate into another language without ever seeing an example of it.
According to Google research scientist Isaac Caswell, the search engine giant’s model works by training a “single gigantic neural AI model” on about 100 data-rich languages and then applying what it’s learned to hundreds of other languages it doesn’t know.
“Imagine if you’re some big polyglot and then you just start reading novels in another language, you can start to piece together what it could mean based on your knowledge of the language in general,” he said.
List of eight new Indian languages incorporated by Google translate:
- Assamese: Used by about 25 million people in Northeast India
- Bhojpuri: Used by about 50 million people in northern India
- Dogri: Used by about three million people in union territory Jammu and Kashmir
- Konkani: Used by about two million people in Goa and Maharashtra
- Maithili: Used by about 34 million people in Bihar
- Meiteilon (Manipuri): Used by about two million people in northeast India
- Mizo: Used by about 830,000 people in Mizoram
- Sanskrit: Used by about 20,000 people in India
The other 16 languages that Google translate has added are:
- Aymara, used by about two million people in Bolivia, Chile and Peru
- Bambara, used by about 14 million people in Mali
- Dhivehi, used by about 300,000 people in the Maldives
- Ewe, used by about seven million people in Ghana and Togo
- Guarani, used by about seven million people in Paraguay and Bolivia, Argentina and Brazil
- Ilocano, used by about 10 million people in northern Philippines
- Krio, used by about four million people in Sierra Leone
- Kurdish (Sorani), used by about 15 million people in Iraq and Iran
- Lingala, used by about 45 million people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Angola and the Republic of South Sudan
- Luganda, used by about 20 million people in Uganda and Rwanda
- Oromo, used by about 37 million people in Ethiopia and Kenya
- Quechua, used by about 10 million people in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and surrounding countries
- Sepedi, used by about 14 million people in South Africa
- Tigrinya, used by about eight million people in Eritrea and Ethiopia
- Tsonga, used by about seven million people in Eswatini, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe