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What happened to Google Translate?

Some four months ago, I was planning to write an enthusiastic article about how great Google’s translation service had become. Outside of linguistic institutions, machine translation from Swedish into another language has not been available to the public for so long (I believe Babelfish was the first), and I was extremely impressed with how well Google managed also complex sentence patterns with parenthetical subordinate clauses, and how the translation engine managed to keep track of pronouns and various correlates. Sure, there were errors, but still, it was quite remarkable. Now, not much of this seems to work any longer, and I get the feeling that maybe a hard drive containing exceptions and phraseology might have crashed in Googleland. This is very sad, since the current translations are almost unreadable. The Swedish word ”hyllningskör” (approx. ‘unanimous praise’) became ”tribute fragile” the other day. And today it became ”tribute shoes”. So, obviously Google learns. But it learns erroneously. Läs mer