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Entries in language translation (5)

Tuesday
Oct232007

Vacations of the Future (1981)

The 1981 book School, Work and Play (World of Tomorrow) illustrates what the vacation of the future will surely look like. With robots and computers doing all of the work, your biggest dillema will be deciding what kind of margarita to order on your space colony retreat. Isn't it great, living in the future?

With computers and robots doing most of your work, you're going to have more leisure time in the future. You'll want to enjoy this extra time - and here computers and robots will again come to your aid.

 

Suppose you feel like a vacation. Planning it is easy. On the viewscreen of your home videophone computer, you watch video guides that show any place in the world - or out of it. Eventually you choose your destination - the Space Islands. These are a group of huge space colonies that are resorts for people from Earth, the Moonbase and other space colonies. They have different climates in order to attract all kinds of tourists, and you choose a colony that is like several South Sea islands inside. However, unlike the real South Sea islands, you can play weightless games there and experience other such delights that only the Space Islands can offer.

Getting from your home to the colony is a long and complicated journey, but your computer arranges all the various stages of the trip, books your seats, reserves your hotel rooms . . . and pays your bills.

Then it's off on a whole variety of robot transports as exciting as the vacation itself - beltways, autotaxis, high-speed monorail trains, underground vacuum bullet trains, mammoth jets, space shuttles and finally a spacecruiser out of the colony.

You're there at last, and a wonderful vacation lies before you. There's only one problem - no one speaks English. The Space Islands are designed to suit all the people on Earth, and so their languages vary. You've chosen one in which Spanish is spoken. You can't speak Spanish, so you hire a portable computer that translates instantly from one language to another.


See also:
Language of the Future (1982)
Man and the Moon filmstrip (1970s)
The Future of Real Estate (1953)
Year 2000 Time Capsule (1958)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)
Vision (Clip 1, 1993)

 

Thursday
Oct112007

Glenn T. Seaborg's 1989 (1964)

The September 20, 1964 Chicago Tribune ran an article about Glenn T. Seaborg's predictions for the futuristic year of 1989. An excerpt appears below.

In another 25 years, [Seaborg] speculates, teen-agers and adults will have two-way wrist watch radios . . . their own computers to aid studies or automatically translate foreign tongues into English . . . vaccines against cancer . . . synthetic foods . . . books from electronic libraries via closed-circuit TV into their homes . . . flights to Europe in one or two hours . . . clothes of special material which they'll wear once or a few times and then throw away . . . security from hurricanes or tornadoes because scientists will have learned how to prevent disastrous storms.


See also:
Closer Than We Think! Throw-Away Clothes (1959)
The Answer Machine (1964)
Health Care in 1994 (1973)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)
Vision (Clip 1, 1993)
Lyndon B. Johnson on 2063 A.D. (1963)
Language of the Future (1982)
Tomorrow's TV-Phone (1956)
That 60's Food of the Future

 

Thursday
May032007

Language of the Future (1982)


The Kids' Whole Future Catalog, published in 1982, contains this illustration of future communication.

In the future, you won't have to learn a foreign language in order to talk to people from other countries. You'll just get out your electronic language translator. If you want to speak in Japanese, you'll just snap a tiny Japanese "memory capsule" into the machine. Then the machine will translate anything you say into that language. When you say "Hello" out will come "Konnichiwa" in perfect Japanese.

(Also, apparently in the future people will be cartoon caricatures of themselves.)

See also:
The Kids' Whole Future Catalog (1982)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 4, 1993)

Friday
Apr132007

Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 4, 1993)

As in part 1 of Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future, part 4 gives us a look at a curious technology that not only translates what someone is saying over the picturephone, but also matches the movement of their mouth to the language being translated.

 

 

See also:
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 2, 1993)
Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 3, 1993)
Picturephone as the perpetual technology of the future
AT&T "You Will" (1993)

Friday
Apr062007

Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future (Part 1, 1993)

There are no language barriers in the paleo-future.

In 1993 AT&T produced a fourteen minute video called Connections: AT&T's Vision of the Future. It looks like it had quite a large budget but I can't figure out who the audience was for such a video. It has a similar feel to AT&T's "You Will" TV commercials which were also produced in 1993.

 

 

You can view part 1 of Connections here. Stay tuned for more. We follow a large cast of characters through this world of the future which of course includes plenty of Virtual Reality.

See also:
AT&T "You Will" (1993)
Face-to-Face Telephones on the Way (New York Times, 1968)
The Road Ahead: Future Homes (1995)