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At this point, Google is probably best known as both a search engine giant, and a company that's prone to experimenting with some of the newest and most appealing technologies in the industry. While Google has always liked to stay ahead of the curve, it's becoming increasingly obvious that machine learning is an important part of the brand's value proposition. In fact, the Google Cloud Platform now comes readily pre-packed with several machine learning solutions, all the way from systems that can understand the context of images, to Google Translation.
Machine learning has become something of a buzzword for the technology industry in the last few years, but it's actually something that developers have been considering for some time. This powerful strategy blurs the lines between machine and person to make it easier for us to connect with computers. The "Google Translate" solution is about making sure that we can understand and read the data available to us in this huge digital environment, in a language that makes sense to anyone who might be reading it.
What is the Google Translate API?
You've probably already learned a thing or two about the Google Translate API when you've been trying to translate a piece of text you saw on vacation or a message you got from someone far away. That little translation box that shows up at the head of the search engine results when you search for text beyond your specific language is Google's own attempt at AI translation - and it's been around for a few years. What's changed recently is that Google now makes that same technology available for its cloud customers.
The Google Cloud Translation API offers a single programmatic interface designed to help developers from all over the world translate a string of arbitrary data into a supported language using something known as Neural Machine Translation. The Translation API is highly responsive and cleaver, so applications and websites that work with the API are often fast, allowing for dynamic translation between source texts, and target languages.
For instance, you could place the Google Translate API on your website, so that when someone from out of the country comes to your site, they can automatically decide whether they want to have the text translated to their native tongue.
Using the Google Translate API
With Google Translate, users can even enjoy natural language detection in cases where you might not know the source language. This makes it much easier for you to track down the information you need, by pushing the existing boundaries of machine translation services. With the Google Translate API you can:
Understand a Host of Languages: The Translation API supports over 100 different languages, all the way from Afrikaans to Zulu. When used in combination, this enables a translation of thousands of different language pairs.
Language Detection: In some cases, you might not know your source language in advance. For instance, user-generated content might not contain a language code, and a translation API can help you to automatically identify languages using a high degree of accuracy.
Scalable: The translation API can scale seamlessly with almost any volume of data. The Google system provides a very high daily quota, and you can also set your own limits according to your budget and needs.
Easy Integration: The Translation API is a simple REST API, which means that you don't have to worry about extracting text from your documents, you can simply send HTML documents into the mix.
Simple Pricing: The Google Translation API offers pricing on a per-character basis, which is great for keeping track of your budget. It's a very low-cost solution compared to some of the other options on the market today.
Installing the Google Cloud Translation API
The Cloud Translation Service uses the Cloud command line tool, which comes with the Google Cloud Platform SDK. This means that if you want to install Google Translate, then you'll need to set up the Cloud SDK first. Once you've done this, you can set up a project by clicking on "Create" or selecting a project. Then you can enable the cloud translation API for the project.
The features of the Google Cloud Translation API are rich and exciting, allowing customers to translate data dynamically between thousands of different types of language pairs. For instance, you can enjoy:
Programmatic access: Because the Google Translate API is a "REST" API you can access and adapt it as you like. In fact, Google even provides sample code for tips on how to use it with different programming languages.
Text translation: The Google Translate API currently supports the translation of more than one hundred different languages. You can even send HTML and receive HTML back with the text inside the code translated on your behalf.
Detection: When you're not sure what the starting language is, you can have the Google system translate it for you.
Constant updates: Behind the scenes, the Google Translation API is always learning as a machine learning model, taking information from human translation and logs. This means that you're constantly getting new language pairs and improved results.
Quota adjustment: Customers can increase or reduce their quota depending on their needs. This is ideal for when you need to keep track of your budget.
Easy Pricing: Like many of the Google Cloud systems, the translation API is based on affordable pricing designed to charge you for how many characters you send.
As the importance of data continues to grow, there's no doubt that machine learning strategies will become an important solution in making sure that developers have access to the information they need to create new and improved innovations. Fortunately, Google Cloud and the platform of incredible solutions they have to offer is here to help.
To find out more about how you can use the Google Cloud Platform to your advantage, or discuss your options regarding the Google Translate API, reach out to Coolhead Tech. We put cloud information into a language you can understand.