On Translation

I noticed that Google Chrome has recently been updated so it provides an automatic option to use Google Translate on any window containing foreign-language text ("foreign" to whatever language you have your browser set to.) If y'all head over to NGS and look at some of the kanji lyrics windows, you can test this for yourself. The big question is, is Google Translate a match for Cayce? At risk of sounding terribly conceited I'll say that at this moment, it most certainly isn't. I start a lot of arguments with techno-fans and AI enthusiasts when I say that I don't believe machines will ever be able to replace human translators, not when it comes to creating really good work. I don't believe machines will ever be able to understand the subtle interplay of connotation, nuance, intention, cultural reference and artistic aesthetic present in human language, literature especially (and remember, "literature" includes poetry, which includes lyrics :P).

Anyway, this article provides a pretty good summary of the human-vs.-machine translation debate, so if any of you are interested, go read it.


  1. Here's my human vs machine point of view, ahem,... google: fghuth that is blhgdstgshg, Cayce: Good translator, kicks google's ass! :)


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