Skype Lite Gets Brings Kannada Language Support, Skype for Linux Moves to Beta

 

Microsoft launched its Skype Lite app for low-end Android smartphones last month and with its latest update, the Redmond-based company has now added the support for Kannada language to the video-chatting application as well. Separately, the Linux version of the app has also moved from alpha to beta and has received some new features and bug fixes.

Talking first about the Lite version of the app, as it was developed in Hyderabad and was launched exclusively for India, it doesn’t come as a surprise that the company has decided to add support for a popular regional language – Kannada to the app. The latest update can be downloaded from Google Play.Skype Lite Gets Brings Kannada Language Support, Skype for Linux Moves to Beta
Moving to the Linux version of the app, which has now moved into beta phase with release of version 5.0, Microsoft has added several new features to Skype for Linux. With version 5.0, the company has added the ability to place calls to mobiles and landlines with Skype credit. “One-to-one video calls can be made from Linux to Skype users on the latest versions of Skype for Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac,” the company said in its blog post.

Skype for Linux will now be able to view shared screens from other Skype desktop clients (Windows 7.33 and above, Mac 7.46 and above), the company said. With the update, the Unity launcher now displays the number of unread conversations, and online contacts in contact list will now include Away and Do Not Disturb statuses, Microsoft added. You can download the Skype for Linux beta version 5.0 from company’s website.

 

Google Translate and Gboard Improve Indian Languages Support, Google Search Will Include Hindi Dictionary Results

Google on Tuesday announced that the company is introducing improved support for Indian languages in its products. After introducing support for machine-learning based translation for Hindi last month, the search giant has now extended its neural machine translation to 9 more Indian languages. The company has also extended its new translation technique’s support to Chrome browser’s built-in auto-translate functionality. Additionally, it has announced that its Gboard Keyboard app will now support all 22 scheduled Indian languages. Finally, Google Search results will now include results from Hindi dictionary as well.

Coming first to the neural machine translation support, Google has announced that Google Translate will now use this improved technique to translate to and from Indian languages including Hindi, Bengali, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Gujarati, Punjabi, Malayalam, and Kannada. “Neural translation offers a huge improvement over the old phrase-based system, translating full sentences at a time, instead of pieces of a sentence. This change improves the quality of the translation in a single jump than seen in the last ten years combined,” the company said in a press release.

 Google Translate and Gboard Improve Indian Languages Support, Google Search Will Include Hindi Dictionary Results

Google has now extended the Neural Machine translation to Chrome browser’s built-in auto-translate functionality as well in order to make full-page translations more accurate and easier to read. This means that users will be able to browse through websites with content translated from foreign languages to the aforementioned 9 languages. As the new technique has been claimed to be far superior to earlier one, the change is likely to make Web more user-friendly for people in India.

The search giant has extended the neural machine auto-translation to Google Maps as well and users will now be able to read the translated reviews for restaurants, cafes, or hotels among other places through the app in their local language as well.

In Google Search, users will now be able to see Hindi dictionary results from Rajpal & Sons dictionary in collaboration with Oxford University Press, the company said. “This new experience will also support transliteration, allowing users to use their existing keyboards to find meanings in Hindi. So when you’d like to know more about a word, say “Nirdeshak”, you can just type in “Nirdeshak ka matlab” in Search, and you’ll instantly get to see word meanings and dictionary definitions on the search results page, including English translations,” it said.

“The most important aspect of making the web more useful and meaningful for all of India is to make India’s Internet more representative of the India we live in. India today has 234 million Indian language users who are online, compared to 175 million English web users, we expect another 300 million Indian language users to come online in the next four years. With today’s launches, we are taking a huge step forward to bring down the barriers that stop Indian language users to get more out of the Internet and also help the industry to solve for the needs of billions Indians,” Rajan Anandan, vice-president of Google’s India and South East Asia operations was quoted as saying in company’s release.

Google introduced the neural machine translation to Google Translate last year and claimed that the technique makes articles “smoother and easier” to read.

 

70 Percent of Small Businesses Support Buy American-Hire American Policies

 

Small business owners continue to back President Donald Trump.

Seventy percent of small businesses are in favor of the President’s Buy American-Hire American executive order. If approved, it will require the government to review its current H-1B visa program.

Meanwhile, 52 percent rate Trump’s first 100 days in office as a success.

According to a new survey by business-for-sale marketplace BizBuySell, majority of small business owners support Trump on most issues.

Small Businesses Approve Trump’s Tax Plan and Immigration Crackdown

An overwhelming majority of small business owners (85 percent) say they support Trump’s proposed tax plan.

As for his controversial stance on immigrants, 59 percent of small businesses say they back the push for increased immigration crackdowns and deportations.

American Healthcare Act is a Sore Point

But small businesses are not particularly happy with Trump’s handling of healthcare issues. Forty-five percent feel President Trump has handled healthcare issues poorly.

Fifty-five percent say they don’t support the Republican healthcare replacement bill, also known as the American Health Care Act.70 Percent of Small Businesses Support Buy American-Hire American Policies

Meanwhile, 54 percent are opposed to the aspect of state waivers opting out of regulations and consumer protections that were included in Obamacare. This would mean states can allow insurers to charge more for patients with pre-existing conditions.

Small Businesses Keep Faith in President Trump

This is not the first time Trump got thumbs up from small businesses since he took office. Another recent survey conducted by SurveyMonkey in partnership with CNBC found nearly 3 out of 5 small business owners approving President Trump.

Respondents did however indicate that tax relief must come soon for them to continue supporting the president.

San Francisco-based BizBuySell surveyed more than 500 small business owners and prospective buyers to determine approval of Trump’s Presidency since he took office.

 

NASA to Support ESA’s Gravitational Wave Space Mission

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • ESA has selected LISA to study gravitational waves in space
  • LISA is expected to launch in 2034
  • NASA has worked for decades to develop many technologies needed for LISA

The European Space Agency (ESA) has selected the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) to study gravitational waves in space – a mission in which NASA will partner with ESA in design, development, operations and data analysis.

LISA is expected to launch in 2034, NASA said in a statement on Thursday.

ESA’s Science Program Committee announced the selection of the three-spacecraft constellation LISA this week.

The mission will now be designed, budgeted and proposed for adoption before construction begins.

Gravitational radiation was predicted a century ago by Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity.

Massive accelerating objects such as merging black holes produce waves of energy that ripple through the fabric of space and time.

Indirect proof of the existence of these waves came in 1978, when subtle changes observed in the motion of a pair of orbiting neutron stars showed energy was leaving the system in an amount matching predictions of energy carried away by gravitational waves.

In September 2015, these waves were first directly detected by the National Science Foundation’s ground-based Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).
The signal arose from the merger of two stellar-mass black holes located some 1.3 billion light-years away. Similar signals from other black hole mergers have since been detected.NASA to Support ESA's Gravitational Wave Space Mission

Seismic, thermal and other noise sources limit LIGO to higher-frequency gravitational waves around 100 cycles per second (hertz).

But finding signals from more powerful events, such as mergers of supermassive black holes in colliding galaxies, requires the ability to detect frequencies much lower than one hertz, a sensitivity level only possible from space.

LISA consists of three spacecraft separated by 2.5 million kilometres in a triangular formation that follows Earth in its orbit around the Sun.

Each spacecraft carries test masses that are shielded in such a way that the only force they respond to is gravity. Lasers measure the distances to test masses in all three spacecraft.

Tiny changes in the lengths of each two-spacecraft arm signals the passage of gravitational waves through the formation.

LISA may also detect a background of gravitational waves produced during the universe’s earliest moments.

NASA said it has has worked for decades to develop many technologies needed for LISA, including measurement, micropropulsion and control systems, as well as support for the development of data analysis techniques.