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Google Improving Tools to Traverse the Globe

Google Improving Tools to Traverse the Globe

by P. H. MadoreJune 30, 2015

New Google Earth FeaturesGoogle has recently unveiled improvements on some of its more popular travel software, Google Earth and Google Translate.

Earth is the tool that allows the user to explore the globe without ever leaving their computer terminal. The software takes data from numerous sources, including satellites and roving Google cars, and puts it together to create an accurate rendering of the earth at any one time. A couple of recent improvements on the software have enabled even more to be done via Google Earth.

For one thing, users can now access the “Voyager” feature, which enables them to explore randomly new and unique visions of the earth. For some time, Google Earth has included images from under the ocean, and presumably this new feature will encompass ongoing, updated images of underwater exploration as well.


The Google Earth project is making more than 1,500 stunning landscapes more easily available. While these landscapes have already been there, they haven’t been as easy to access before, now available via a Chrome extension or a web gallery.

Also read: Google’s Project Zero – You’ve Got 90 Days

Google Earth is now ten years old, having been started humbly in 2005 when Google was just getting off the ground. It is part of the seemingly tentacle-like strategy of Google, where it has tried to become useful in nearly every industry. In this way, if any of those industries should stop being profitable on their own, the company will still have means to make money.

Translate Getting Informal

Now that Google has improved the way for a traveler to find places to go in the world, they’ve also got to improve that traveler’s communications for the trip. A new improvement on Google Translate enables the user to enter informal speech from a foreign language and get a more accurate output in the native language. In a recent example posted by another outlet, the company’s translation software would previously translate an informal Hindi saying that means “is everything alright” to “and is it not alright.” While the old way would have been workable even in business, by having the translation engine accurately translate informalities, the software becomes more useful for all kinds of people.

Google says that it has been user input, the true core of its business more generally, which has assisted it in improving the translation techniques of its software. Over time, through millions of suggestions, the engine has learned what people are trying to say, and now interprets that rather than the literal meaning of the words being entered.

While it is yet a long ways away from the Star Trek universal translator, it is now conceivable that one day a user could say something to his Google Translate-enabled phone, and have it spoken out from there in the language he was trying to communicate into. Phone conversations could be done the same way without much delay, once the software is at the point where it works seamlessly.

Images from Pixabay and Google Earth.

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