Animals… and translation!
In this blog we have written about animal languages a couple of times, and it’s a really interesting subject so I thought they deserved at least one more post. So here we are.
As surprising as it might seem, animals have accents too, as they are affected by the environment just like humans. According to this article, it has been found that ducks have regional accents. This study by Middlesex University was carried out with Cockney and Cornish ducks. The former were seen to produce louder sounds, whereas ducks from Cornwall were described as quacking in a more “giggly” way. One of the reasons given for this difference is that London ducks live in an area with many noises they have to overcome, such as horns and planes. Amazing….
translate for animals
And now a bit of fun… you might already know that a few months ago Google released a Beta version of the Android app called Translate for Animals, which is supposed to transcribe the language of a quite a lot of animals, namely cats, dogs, birds (although this seems a bit broad as a concept), rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, tortoises, horses, chickens, sheep, donkeys, and pigs. The animals’ noises are compared and contrasted against the so-called Animal linguistic Database and you will be able to read what your pet said on your phone. The description of the whole process, although perhaps a little vague, is full of funny tips about which pets you should have a conversation with and some hilarious warnings, so it is worth having a look at it. And don’t miss the video if you want to see the advert!
Apart from the fun (or frustration) that could be had by talking with your pets – I doubt our hamster would be too happy about us watching TV while he is asleep – this shows an interesting connection between science, language and translation.