Fabricius: the new hieroglyph translator by Google

Hyperaxion Jul 16, 2020

The technology is capable of teaching Egyptian writing as well as facilitating the translation process for scholars from Ancient Egypt.

On July 15, 1799, soldiers of Napoleon Bonaparte’s army found the Rosetta Stone, a piece of granite with inscriptions that allowed, for the first time, to unveil the meanings of hieroglyphs, a script used by the Egyptian elite 4,000 years ago.

Fabricius: the new hieroglyph translator by Google
(Credit: Google).

Today, also on July 15th, Google announces the launch of Fabricius, a new Google Arts & Culture tool that allows anyone to learn and explore this form of writing that fascinates the contemporary world.

The tool is available here.

There are three ways to explore the tool: in the first phase, you can “Learn” the ancient hieroglyphs with a brief informative presentation in six simple steps. Then, Fabricius invites you to “Play” to translate your own words and messages into that language, being able to share messages with friends and relatives. Finally, the tool can also be used for academic research, allowing hieroglyph translation.

Technology at the service of History

Fabricius is the first open-source digital tool for the study of hieroglyphics. The tool uses AutoML Vision (Google Cloud technology) to decode characters using machine learning, a method that saves time and resources in the translation process.

Fabricius was created in partnership with the Australian Centre for Egyptology at Macquarie University, the British digital products company Psycle Interactive and Egyptologists from different countries.

The platform was named after Georg Fabricius, a German archaeologist recognized for being the “father” of epigraphy, the study of ancient inscriptions (or epigraphs).

Related topics:

Ancient Egypt Hieroglyphs

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