My friends know that I've been watching Star Trek since the 1960s. The series featured great stories and fantastic techologies, all of which all seemed very normal in the 23rd century. What is truly amazing is that some of those technologies that were pure science fiction in the 1960s have been invented and are in use today. Think of the today's smartphones. In many ways they are way ahead of the "communicator" envisioned in Star Trek.
Here's a new techology straight our of Star Trek that caught my eye.
A relatively new company, Waverly Labs www.waverlylabs.com/ has been running a crowd funding campaign around an in-ear device call "Pilot". It's an on-the-fly language translator. On their website and making the Facebook rounds is a video demo of two people wearing them, one speaking english and the other speaking french. The english speaker speaks in english and the french speaker hears the french translation and vice-versa. The cool part is that there's no app, no voice training ... it just happens.
Our friends over at CNet who generally avoids "out there" and highly hyped crowd funded technologies wrote it up: www.cnet.com/news/pilot-bluetooth-earpiece-crowdfunds-the-dream-of-universal-instant-language-translation/
We know that it's a long way from a video demo to a real marketable product that works. But this is one that we hope works and will actually operate as envisioned. Think of it: No more foreign language movie subtitles. Natural language conversations anywhere around the world.
In Star Trek, this technology was called the Universal Translator. This might be the first step.