Google Translate apparently hacked

September 12, 2019 at 11:19:10
Specs: several
This morning and again just now, this afternoon, I tried to
translate two short bits of text that I know are completely
innocent. In both cases, after typing the first two words,
the first word of the translation changes to a "swear" word.
"Kjaere dig" (Norwegian for the greeting "Dear you" or
maybe "Love you") was changed to "F... you", and
"Skitur til" ("cross-country to") was changed to "Sh.. to".

It has been a few hours since I first noticed this. Has it got
into the news anywhere yet?

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

See More: Google Translate apparently hacked

September 12, 2019 at 12:05:09
Kjaere dig=love you
Kære dig=Dear you
Skitur til=sh.. to
Skitur dig=F... you


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September 12, 2019 at 12:49:35
Tak hidde63

and tak again

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September 17, 2019 at 07:40:23
Most translators have problems with Scandinavian words that in other languages are two (or more) words, but in the Scandinavian language is one word. This is especially the case when there are more than one possible original meaning.

Ski-tur = skitur (ski trip)
Skit-ur = skitur (s--- watch)

Usually the original meaning is understood from context by humans, but translators often fail.


Wind slow

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Related Solutions

September 17, 2019 at 12:09:19
Are you all telling me that in two attempts to translate the first
two words of two different texts, in both cases the first word just
happened to include a "swear" word? So skitur, which at first
correctly translated as "cross-country" ("ski tour" is exactly what
the text was about), includes the word "skit", which in Norwegian
is not a short play?

-- Jeff, in Bewilderment

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September 18, 2019 at 00:56:58
In the case of "kjaere", I have no explanation, as it only means "dear" or "dearest".
In the case of "skitur", yes.

This is an inceasing problem since translators are being used in ever more instances.

Another example, from Swedish, is glasstrut, formed from glass (ice cream) and strut (cone), ie. "ice cream cone". Written with a hyphen it spells glass-strut, but if you omit the hyphen you also omit one "s", since you never write three of the same letters in one word.
A translator would make it into either "glas strut" (glass cone) or "glass trut" (ice cream gull)/(ice cream mouth), since "trut" means both gull (Larinae) and mouth.

Wind slow

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September 18, 2019 at 12:18:04
That seems awfully bad luck on my part. Two for two. Huh.

If I recall correctly, after typing "Kjaere" it gave me "Love",
then I added "dig" and it gave me "F... you", then I typed
some more and it changed to "Dear you". So it sounds
like maybe "dear", "love", and "f..." aren't very different in

Dear me.

-- Jeff, still slightly bewildered

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September 18, 2019 at 15:02:28
and you thought English was complicated...

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September 19, 2019 at 06:48:03
But nothing was hacked ?

Always pop back and let us know the outcome - thanks

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September 19, 2019 at 09:23:47
So it seems, if these poster-people are to be believed.

-- Jeff, hard against the deadline in a months-long project, half-done... :-)

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