Google Translate evolves to eradicate gender biasing from its results

When you talk about the internet, you talk about Google. A company which is synonymous to the internet is a phenomenon among every age group. A search engine which has expanded to spectrums beyond our narrow viewpoints. Google is not only a search engine but allows a lot more renditions of it for the users to use. There is Google maps which takes you places, Google earth where you can visit places by sitting at your home and also Google Translate which allows you to understand 103 languages.

Among this Google Translate is one its oldest features on the website. It is around from 2006, based on the statistical machine translation, Google translator was one of its kind then. They had taken inputs from the United Nations and also from the European Parliament as well. The transcripts from those two entities helped Google a lot in setting up the translate feature.

The Translate has its own way to work, it first translates the input language into English then it translates it further to the target language. This is still the way Translate works. However, statistical machine translation is something which was based on referring to hundreds of millions of datasheets before coming to a conclusion. By this, it used to translate from word to word.

Google Translate used to previously translate from word to another word rather than sentences. This backlashed as some of the languages, when translated, meant absolutely nothing. Google Translate is accused a lot of times of being wrong as it failed to understand and even make sense after translation. This made Google work on one of their oldest features.

The year 2016 in the month of November, Google Neural Machine Translation (GNMT) was introduced. This feature or this technology is more accurate. After introducing this feature, Translate was able to read through the lines and translated sentences as a whole. It considered the broader context of the input and then did the actual translation. In 2016, this feature was available only for some of the languages and gradually spread to other languages.

That said, Google Translates keeps on evolving. It has not stopped since its inception. The newest development is completely removing the gender bias. It is still a work in progress as it is rolled out for a few languages. The translator will now translate a language, which has some neutral words when it comes to gender, to both the masculine and the feminine versions of it.

This means that for a gender-neutral word there will be two results one which will cover the masculine version and the other will cover the feminine version. This addressing of gender bias from Google has also shifted to auto-correct as well. The auto-correct will also give suggestions keeping in mind both the genders. Although this feature is available for the mobile app it will soon be available for the desktop version. However, the translator on the web has also got a makeover. It has become more quick and responsive compared to its predecessor.

– Unmesh Phule


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