No. 122: Mar-Apr 1999
I. Docherty decided to try out a computer translation service. He took the first four lines of a well known poem by Wordsworth and had it translated into German by the service. Next, he had the German translated back into English. Sorry about this, Wordsworth.
"I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o'er vales and hills When all at once I saw a cloud, A host of golden daffodils;..."
"I was surprised lonely as a cloud Swims on high o'er vales and hill, When in a course I saw a mass, A central processor of the golden daffodils;..."
(Anonymous; "Feedback," New Scientist, p. 96, January 31, 1998.)
Comment. Perhaps computers have a sense of humor after all!