Time to geek out for a minute.
Laura, James and I have been using Google Translate on our iPhones and I wanted to tell you about it. For people who travel in foreign countries and do not speak the language this is a life-saver. Especially when in a restaurant and you are trying to read the menu.
Here is how it works and it does not even require a data connection.
First you download the language to the phone (in our case Czech and German). You need to do this where you have an internet connection.
Opening the app, you select the language you want: say Czech to English.
Click the camera icon and point the camera at the thing you want translated (say the menu written in Czech).
Wait a moment and the words on the menu magically convert to English! In the same font and everything! It is so cool it is hard to describe. It’s not perfect, but it gives you enough information to figure out what is in the dish.
Works great in grocery stores too. This way you won’t accidentally buy powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar like we did on the first day.
If you have an internet connection you can even speak English to the phone and it will speak back in the selected language. Then when the person you are speaking to replies it will translate it back to English. Just like the Universal Translator in Star Trek. Amazing!