Over the last few months, we shared with you two innovative translation experiences that we developed for the Windows platform – Bing Translator for Windows Phone and for Windows 8. These apps utilize the best technologies from Microsoft Research, Bing and Windows to deliver great travel, communication and information consumption experiences to consumers.
Thousands of developers are at BUILD 2013 in San Francisco this week where Microsoft is showcasing how they can create great experiences for their consumers on Windows platforms by utilizing these technologies in their own applications.
Today during Steven Guggenheimer’s keynote at BUILD, Microsoft showcased the availability of an exciting new update to Twitter for Windows Phone – bringing instant translation of Tweets that are in a different language than your own. Over the last year, Microsoft has been working with the team at Twitter to explore how its translation technology, based on Microsoft Research’s extensive advancements in machine learning, can help the global Twitter community better communicate across language barriers.
With this update, a soccer/football fan can still follow the news about their favorite soccer team even if the breaking news on Twitter is not in their language. Tapping on a Tweet with a globe icon, which indicates translation is available, expands the Tweet and shows translated text right below the original content. The built-in Tweet translation feature is available for the 38 languages supported by the app powered by Microsoft Translator. Download/update your Windows Phone Twitter app to try it out for yourself!
“Breaking down language barriers with world-class research and engineering has been the guiding principle behind the development of Microsoft Translator, and Twitter is an excellent new addition to community of customers and developers leveraging Microsoft’s translation technology for their users,” said Peter Lee, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Research US. “The integration of machine translation technology from Microsoft Research has the ability to broaden any application’s impact through a substantial increase in accessibility to real time communications and information sharing. No longer is language a barrier to real time instant connections around the world.”
Windows Phone application developers can take advantage of the Microsoft Translator API to bring the power of instant translation to their apps. Windows developers can also download the just announced Translator control for Windows to reach a global audience and differentiate their Windows applications.
As the next billion users come online, we look forward to delivering and enabling many more global experiences by continuing to harness the innovations coming out of our research work and data platforms with developers, app builders and partners.
Today at BUILD, Microsoft announced the preview of the Bing Translator Control for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. Developers can download the control immediately from the newly launched Bing Dev Center.
With the Translator control developers get easy access to robust, cloud-based, automatic translation between more than 40 languages. The Translator control gives the Windows 8 developer access to machine translation services, which is built on over a decade of natural language research from Microsoft Research. After download and one-time authentication, you can simply place the Bing Translator control in your app, feed it a string to translate, and receive the translation.
The Bing Translator control, powered by the flexible Microsoft Translator API puts the power of a world class machine translation system in your hands. Designed to enable a variety of scenarios, it is available in a number of developer friendly protocols.
The control takes the text you pass in to the Bing Translator web service for translation, and then passes the translation of the input back to you. Your application can handle the return text however you see fit. You receive the text to translate by any method, and render it by any means you choose- using the Translator Control in the middle, in order to translate the input text to the target language.
Get started with the Translator Control today!
Download the Translator Control
Sign Up for the Translator Service
Get Samples and Documentation
The Bing Translator app for Windows is available for download today. Designed from the ground up for Windows devices, the app places powerful translation technology at your fingertips by instantly translating content in more than 40 languages, at home, work or on-the-go. Whether utilizing your PC’s camera to deliver “augmented reality” translation, typing in a quick sentence or two, working offline when you are not connected or harnessing unique features of Windows to translate content from many other Windows apps, Bing Translator is a must have application for all your Windows devices.
You can now download the free app from the Windows store here.
Check out the app in action in the following video:
<p><br /></p><p> </p><p> browse?mkt=en us&vid=a2c58116 bf98 4b1f 9225 da56e52607fd&from=sharepermalink&src=v5:share:sharepermalink:</p><p> </p><p> </p><p>The Bing Translator app is based on years of Microsoft Research’s investments in advancing machine learning – a way to find patterns that humans can’t see, helping people interpret the words and worlds around them.</p><p>Translating content whether browsed, typed or scanned is nearly instantaneous. Just point your device’s camera at printed text and watch as the translation is automatically overlaid over the video stream - creating subtitles for everyday life. You can also type to translate with your keyboard and hear translations spoken with a native speaker's accent.</p><p> <a href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/8787.cameracapture.png" data-mce-href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/8787.cameracapture.png"><img src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/8787.cameracapture.png" alt="" border="0" data-mce-src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/8787.cameracapture.png" /></a></p><p>The Translator app is the perfect companion when traveling. The app can help overcome language barriers, even when there’s no internet connection. Save on expensive data plans when traveling with offline language packs for select languages so you can travel with confidence, even in the most remote locations. More language packs coming soon.</p><p> <a href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/0726.Offline-Downloads.png" data-mce-href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/0726.Offline-Downloads.png"><img src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/0726.Offline-Downloads.png" alt="" border="0" data-mce-src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/0726.Offline-Downloads.png" /></a></p><p>The Share Charm lets you quickly translate highlighted text in any Windows 8 app, with Snap View you can multi-task while browsing, chatting or more by snapping Bing Translator to the right or left of your screen. With this unique feature, powerful translation technology is just a swipe away in Windows 8 no matter where you are – at your desk or on the go.</p><p> <a href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/4505.SharetoTranslatorEnglish.png" data-mce-href="http://blogs.msdn.com/cfs-file.ashx/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/4505.SharetoTranslatorEnglish.png"><img src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/4505.SharetoTranslatorEnglish.png" alt="" border="0" data-mce-src="http://blogs.msdn.com/resized-image.ashx/__size/550x0/__key/communityserver-blogs-components-weblogfiles/00-00-00-91-16/4505.SharetoTranslatorEnglish.png" /></a></p><p>For more about the app, check out the <a href="http://www.bing.com/translator/windows" data-mce-href="http://www.bing.com/translator/windows">Translator for Windows</a> product page, and check back for future developments and updates.</p><p>We hope that this app becomes your window to the world, no matter where you are.</p><p>- Vikram Dendi,<br />Director of Product Management, <br />Microsoft/Bing Translator – Microsoft Research</p>
The Bing Translator app is based on years of Microsoft Research’s investments in advancing machine learning – a way to find patterns that humans can’t see, helping people interpret the words and worlds around them.
Translating content whether browsed, typed or scanned is nearly instantaneous. Just point your device’s camera at printed text and watch as the translation is automatically overlaid over the video stream - creating subtitles for everyday life. You can also type to translate with your keyboard and hear translations spoken with a native speaker's accent. The Translator app is the perfect companion when traveling. The app can help overcome language barriers, even when there’s no internet connection. Save on expensive data plans when traveling with offline language packs for select languages so you can travel with confidence, even in the most remote locations. More language packs coming soon.
The Share Charm lets you quickly translate highlighted text in any Windows 8 app, with Snap View you can multi-task while browsing, chatting or more by snapping Bing Translator to the right or left of your screen. With this unique feature, powerful translation technology is just a swipe away in Windows 8 no matter where you are – at your desk or on the go.
We hope that this app becomes your window to the world, no matter where you are!
- Vikram Dendi,Director of Product Management, Microsoft/Bing Translator – Microsoft Research
Klingon* is now a supported option on the Bing Translator site, allowing you to translate text snippets and web pages to and from Klingon. It is also available within the Translator widget, allowing Klingon visitors of your site to see it in their language. Bing Translator for Windows Phone added Klingon as a supported language, for text mode input/output and camera mode output. On the Bing Translator site you can also choose to translate to both Latin-script Klingon and to plqaD (the Klingon script). Please note that if you are translating from Klingon, you would need to explicitly select the language (rather than rely on Auto-detect).
This system has been built as a labor of love, in close partnership with members of the Klingon Language Institute (KLI) headed by Dr.Lawrence Schoen, Prof. Marc Okrand, the inventor of the Klingon language, many other Klingon enthusiasts inside and outside Microsoft. We received fantastic support from our fellow Star Trek fans at Paramount and CBS.
Building a new translation system from scratch is a challenging affair, requiring a large amount of training documents, many iterations of training the engine, reviewing and evaluating, and repeating this many times. What you initially get is mostly unintelligible, and with continued learning comes the improvement – both in vocabulary and in fluency. While there is a great amount of training material for such a system in mainstream languages like English, French or German, Klingon is a language that does not (yet!) have comparable volume of “parallel” (translated) text, or even material in Klingon alone. Our friends in the community were able to help us gather what is available, and used the Microsoft Translator Hub to train the initial engine. Members of the community were then able to review, critique and correct the translation errors this infant system was making. These corrections directly influenced the next training run, and thus the system has been getting better every day. Given its infancy, and the distance it has yet to travel to achieve the necessary fluency and vocabulary – Klingon will stay as an experimental language in Bing Translator for the time being.
We wish to thank the Klingon language community, Prof.Okrand, Dr.Schoen and CBS/Paramount for helping make this a reality. If you are a Klingon speaker and wish to join the Hub community built around this effort, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Not everyone can have Lieutenant Uhura translate for them, so we hope Bing Translator’s Klingon support comes handy next time you are in a pinch.
lupDujHomwIj lubuy'moH gharghmey
- Vikram Dendi & the Translator team at Microsoft
Update (2:52 PM): Added note about auto-detection, and other minor edits.
* Klingon is a trademark of CBS Studios Inc.
Here is a translated version of the original Klingon Empire Announcement:
tlhIngan Hol 'oH qIb Hol wa'DIch'e' mughlaHbogh Bing Translator 'e' maq tlhIngan yejquv, boqbogh tlhIngan Hol yejHaD, Microsoft je.
Klingon is the first galactic language which can be translated by Bing Translator, announces the Klingon High Council, in alliance with the Klingon Language Institute and Microsoft.
qaStaHvIS DISmey, yuQjIjDIvI' luSuchtaHvIS tlhInganpu''e', Qatlhqu' tlhIngan Hol mughmeH 'ej tera' Holmey mu'tlhegh lIngmeH Qu', nuja' tlhInganpu'. tera' Holmey rurbe'chu' tlhIngan Hol, 'ej 'oH HaDtaH tera'ngan law'. wejmaH tera' Sep, Hoch puH'a' je Dab HaDwI'pu'. qIb ghatlh tlhIngan Hol, tlhIngan tIgh je 'e' 'agh ngoDvam.
For years, Klingons have told us that the task of translating Klingon and producing sentences in Earth languages while visiting the UFP is very difficult. Klingon is truly unlike Earth languages, and many Earthlings (continue to) study it. Students (of Klingon) live in thirty different Earth regions (countries) and all great landmasses. This fact demonstrates the galactic dominance of Klingon language and the Klingon Way.
tlhIngan Hol chelta'mo' Bing Translator, qIb lengwI'vaD, tlhIngan wo' SuchwI'vaD je nuH 'ut mojbej mughwI'. Hoch SepDaq, tera'nganvaD tlhIngan Hol, tlhIngan tIgh je lIH Bing Translator mughmeH laHmey. pIj mughwI' lo'chugh taghwI', nom tlhIngan Hol pab pIn moj.
Because Bing Translator has added Klingon, the translator will certainly become and essential weapon (tool) for (the) galactic traveler and (the) visitor to the Klingon Empire. In every region (country), the translation abilities of Bing Translator will introduce Earthlings to the Klingon language and the Klingon Way (culture). If beginners frequently use the translator, they will quickly become grammarians of the Klingon language.
Qo'noS Qombogh muD, tuj'a', Debmey tIn je SIQlaH tera'nganpu'. pIraQSIS Qaw'lu'mo' choHpu' Qo'noS 'e' leghlaH je. Bing Translator lo'taHvIS lengwI', lengDI' bel, 'ej roD batlhHa' vangbe'laH 'ej tIgh chach junlaH. Microsoft Bing Translator, qum chaw' je ghajchugh «SuvwI' lengmey» lengwI', tlhIngan SuvmeH tIgh 'ut ghojlaH, qagh SoplaH ghopDu'Daj lo'taHvIS, 'ej pIjHa' QumHa'.
Earthlings will be able to endure (experience) the quaking (turbulent) atmosphere, great heat and large deserts of Qo'noS. They will also be able to see that Qo'noS has changed due to the destruction of Praxis. While the traveler uses Bing Translator, he will be comfortable while travelling, and will usually be able to not act dishonorably and avoid cultural emergencies. With Microsoft Bing Translator and a government permit, "Warrior Tours" travelers can learn essential Klingon fighting, eat qagh with their hands and infrequently miscommunicate.
che'ronDaq mughwI' mu'tlheghmey, mu'mey je tobta' tlhIngan Hol yejHaD. jIjDI' tlhIngan Hubbeq, 'ejyo' je, toy'beH mughwI'. 'e' poQbej SuvwI' Hol. DaH not Hegh SuvwI' «HIjol» mughHa'DI' boq beq 'ej «HIQoj» mojDI'. taHmeH tlhIngan wo''a' HoSghaj, lI'chu' Bing Translator mughmeH laHmey.
The Klingon Language Institute has tested the translator's sentences and words on the battlefield. When the Klingon Defense Force and Starfleet cooperate, the translator will be ready to serve. A warrior language certainly requires that. Now warriors will never die when "Beam me up!" is mistranslated by an alliance crew and becomes "Beam me out!" In order that the powerful great Klingon Empire continue, the translation abilities of Bing Translator will be supremely useful.
An easy way to subscribe to the Translator API is through the Windows Azure Marketplace , as evidenced by the thousands of developers subscribing to the service through the marketplace. The team just added an often asked for feature - Auto-refill. This feature addresses a key request from many Translator API customers who wanted to (a) more tightly control their monthly pre-committed subscription level and (b) not run out of volume in case the usage exceeds the forecast level.
Here is what the marketplace team has to say about the new feature:
The Auto-refill option can be enabled on any paid subscription, giving more options to subscribers of the Microsoft Translator API ensure effective use of their subscription volumes. Auto-refill provides the ability to ensure that you, or anyone using your subscription, do not reach your usage limit before the end of your subscription period, and thus avoid the resultant loss of service. Auto-refill does this by cancelling your current Translator subscription and creating a new subscription before you reach your usage limit. All this happens seamlessly, without interrupting the service.
How Does it Work?
You subscription gives you a certain allotment of transactions, users, characters or other discrete limits (characters - for translator). Once you enable Auto-refill on a particular subscription, Windows Azure Marketplace monitors your character balance for the current subscription period. If your balance reaches 10% or less of your subscription limit, and you have not used up your maximum number of Auto-refills in the past 30 days (or have chosen unlimited Auto-refills), Windows Azure Marketplace re-subscribes you to, and charges you the then-effective subscription rate for, a new subscription, thereby giving you new subscription period and new character balance. In addition, any characters remaining immediately before Auto-refill occurred are carried over to your new subscription so that you don’t lose anything you already paid for.
Who Can Benefit From Auto-refill?
Scenario 1 - Manage Anticipated Spikes in Volume
If you are running a promotional campaign for your application you might see higher than expected traffic during the promotion. If you don't know what your target reach may be and want to ensure no interruption in service, you could select the "Unlimited" refill option during the course of the promotion. This will ensure that any unanticipated spikes are supported. In the month following the promotion, you can then modify your subscription and auto-refill needs accordingly.
Scenario 2 - Manage Your Costs
The cyclical nature of projects may require higher or lower volumes in given months. Some months your usage may require only 4M characters and in others your usage may increase to 32M characters. With the auto-refill feature you can set your monthly volume to 4M with an auto-refill option of 8 refills.By leveraging the auto-refill feature, you are able to better manage your subscription to your lowest anticipated volumes / costs and then increase your volumes as needed. Allowing you to minimize time spent monitoring your usage and save costs over a larger subscription every month.
Step-by-Step to Enable Auto-Refill for Microsoft Translator
Step 1: Select “Enable Auto Refill”
Step 2: Enter the Number of refills, agree to the terms and conditions, and click “Submit”
Step 3: Return to summary where uou should now see your available refills and option to “Edit Auto Refill”
Click here to learn more about the Auto-refill feature and here to learn more about other release features for Windows Azure Marketplace.