Better translation tools promise to make the internet a more welcoming space for those around the world who speak uncommon or less widely spoken languages to communicate and express themselves.
Before implementing No Language Left Behind in the metaverse, Meta will utilize it to enhance translation on Facebook and Instagram. Additionally, it is becoming open source so that anyone can utilize it.
Having efficient translation tools at our disposal is essential for interacting across boundaries, cultures, and languages in our increasingly globalized internet world. These tools are already quite sophisticated for native speakers of languages like English and Spanish, but the less often a language is spoken, the less probable it is that native speakers of that language will be able to use these tools.
The No Languages Left Behind project by Meta aims to create an AI model that can translate an increasing number of languages, even those that are less widely spoken. The tech giant claimed Thursday that the AI model, which was first introduced in March, can now translate between 200 different languages.
In a Facebook post, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg referred to it as an "AI superpower" and explained that in addition to being used by all of Meta's services and products, it will also be made publicly accessible on GitHub.
"We just open-sourced an AI model we built that can translate across 200 different languages -- many of which aren't supported by current translation systems," he said. "We call this project No Language Left Behind, and the AI modeling techniques we used from NLLB are helping us make high-quality translations on Facebook and Instagram for languages spoken by billions of people around the world."
With centers of scientists working on realistic avatars for use in virtual worlds and technologies to decrease hate speech across its platforms, among many other strange and amazing things, Meta spends extensively on AI research.
By collaborating with the finest AI researchers and keeping a connection with the larger research community through open-sourcing initiatives like No Languages Left Behind, the company is able to ensure that it remains at the forefront of innovation.
No Language Left Behind is immediately implementable on all current Meta social networks. However, according to company researchers, the metaverse, which is Meta's big bet for the future, is where the tool will truly shine.
"For billions of people around the world, they don't have access to a technology or a translation service that really works well for their language," Angela Fan, a Meta AI research scientist, said in a video produced by the company. "We're really hoping the technology we're developing will make the metaverse inclusive by design."