You too could be like Joe 90! It may sound like an April fools joke but NEC have been working on a Universal Translator. Unlike the ones in Star Trek you do not actually hear the translation but a text translation is beamed by special spectacles directly in to your retina. The company's Tele Scouter glasses were unveiled this week in Tokyo to a somewhat sceptical audience of local press. The device uses voice recognition combined with translation software, which some are saying is a recipe for misunderstanding.
NEC admits that when the device goes on sale in 2011 ¥7.5 million (£50,000) for a package of 30 pairs of glasses the translation feature will not be ready. The first version will use face-recognition software to help shop sales staff identify customers and access their shopping history for that 'personal' sales touch, which sounds like a much more worrying idea to me.
Seen at http://www.techradar.com/