Alien Languages Translated By Computer Program?

A computer program developed by John Elliott of Leads Metropolitan University may be able to discern the structure of an alien language - the first step in understanding visitors from outer space.

Dr. Elliott uses a database of sixty different languages for purposes of comparison.

He believes that even an alien language far removed from any on Earth is likely to have recognizable patterns that could help reveal how intelligent the life forms are.

"Language has to be structured in a certain way otherwise it will be inefficient and unwieldy," he told New Scientist magazine.

Most Americans were introduced to the idea of a machine that could translate any alien language in the popular 1960's television program Star Trek.


(Star Trek Universal Translator)

The earliest reference to the idea of machine translation, as far as I know, is the language rectifier from Ralph 124c 41+, the 1911 classic by Hugo Gernsback.

He immediately turned the small shining disc of the Language Rectifier on his instrument till the pointer rested on "French."

From Scientist develops programme to understand alien languages; thanks to Moira for the tip!

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