Monday, April 6, 2009

Tony Ballantyne's "Takeaway" (flash fiction, uplift): Language skills = better pay

"because translation software looks at the whole context of language, it has enabled communication between species, the results of which are that whole ecosystems are changing due to animals exploiting new opportunities."

So we have ants employed in microprocessor factories doing jobs impossible to either humans or machines. But the wages they draw are very low - just enough to help them buy human food! Because they rely only on translation software, & have made no effort to understand the larger context & the pay they ought to be drawing.

And Mr Ho has finally convinced Ms Stephanie, using real-life ants' low-wages example, why learning French the hard way (without using automatic translators) will improve her prospects of earning more.

Fact sheet.

First published: Nature, 19 March 2009.
Rating: A.

4 comments:

Micah said...

Those with access to Nature (the periodical) can find the story here:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v458/n7236/full/458376a.html

Any link out there for the rest of us?

Tinkoo said...

I don't know of a free access link, Micah. When I know, I usually put it in Fact Sheet section.

Micah said...

I know you do; I really appreciate it.

It's just that I thought I was subscribed to only the free fiction feed. Must be something wrong with my settings.

Keep up the good work!

Tinkoo said...

Micah - here is the feed that picks up only free fiction posts.

Caution: May not have a post daily.