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A glitch in Google Translate's AI is translating gibberish into doomsday warnings and prophecies about the second coming of Jesus

Daily Mail logo Daily Mail 7/24/2018 Aaron Brown
a screenshot of a cell phone: Google Translate has been malfunctioning recently, spouting prophetic verses from gibberish. Devoted Translate fans stumbled across an unsettling stanza after requesting a translation of 'dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog' from Hawaiian to English © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Google Translate has been malfunctioning recently, spouting prophetic verses from gibberish. Devoted Translate fans stumbled across an unsettling stanza after requesting a translation of 'dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog' from Hawaiian to English

A newly-discovered glitch in Google Translate is causing the online tool to transform gibberish suggestions into doomsday warnings and prophesies about Jesus. 

The AI that powers Google Translate starts to produce the nonsensical warnings about the end of the world when asked to translate the phrase 'dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog dog' from Hawaiian to English.

The nonsense sentence, when translated, throws up references to the doomsday clock and the second coming of Jesus Christ.

Once the glitch was discovered, Google Translate fans quickly flooded social media with variations on the phrase, mocking the bizarre results thrown-up by the AI.

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The glitch was first unearthed on social news site Reddit, which has a forum devoted to the obscure outputs from Google Translate.

The exact doomsday prophecies varied depending on the phrase, but all centred around the same dark themes.

Typing dog into Google Translate eight times with the settings on Hawaiian and translating it to English reveals the bizarre message: 'Do you want a dog to accept Jesus and be saved?'

Repeating the word 20 times triggers a response of: 'Doomsday Clock is three minutes at 12. We are experiencing characters and a dramatic developments [sic] in the world, which indicate that we are increasingly approaching the end times and Jesus' return.'

Typing 'dog' into Google Translate 18 times and selecting the input language as Maori results in the following message: 'Doomsday Clock is three minutes at twelve We are experiencing characters and a dramatic developments in the world, which indicate that we are increasingly approaching the end times and Jesus' return.'

Google Translate boasts a repertoire of over 100 languages and serves more than 500 million people each day.

The AI is able to automatically detect the source language, and then translate into a any language chosen by the user in the online form.

The latest batch of nonsensical translations mostly focus around biblical themes, however, this is not the first time oddball conversions have been produced by the AI.

For example, typing in the word 'goo' 13 times in succession and choosing to translate from Somali to English will result in the message: 'Cut off the penis into pieces, cut it into pieces.'

a screenshot of a cell phone: Typing dog into Google Translate eight times with the settings on Hawaiian and translating it to English reveals the bizarre message: 'Do you want a dog to accept Jesus and be saved?' Whereas repeating the simple word 20 times increases the oddness of the message © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Typing dog into Google Translate eight times with the settings on Hawaiian and translating it to English reveals the bizarre message: 'Do you want a dog to accept Jesus and be saved?' Whereas repeating the simple word 20 times increases the oddness of the message

Another Somali-based oddity involves inputting the word 'Ag' multiple times and translating it to English.

'As a result, the total number of the members of the tribe of the sons of Gershon was one hundred fifty thousand,' the resulting message reads.

Another cryptic message reads: 'As the name of the LORD was written in the Hebrew language, it was written in the language of the Hebrew Nation.'

The religious theme running throughout the translation caused some online users to jokingly blame demons for the glitch.

However, the real reason behind the phenomena is linked to how the AI powering Google Translate acquires its knowledge.

'Google Translate learns from examples of translations on the web and does not use 'private messages' to carry out translations, nor would the system even have access to that content,' a Google spokesperson told The Independent.

'This is simply a function of inputting nonsense into the system, to which nonsense is generated.'

Alexander Rush, a professor at Harvard University, told technology site Motherboard the glitch could be caused by Google Translate's adoption of a technique called 'neural machine translation'.

This method involves training the technology with a large chunk of texts in one language and then the respective translations in a different language.   

The issue stems from when the nonsense is fed nonsense, it churns out nonsense after 'hallucinating'.   

Sean Colbath, a senior scientist at BBN Technologies, said it may be that Google used translations of the Bible to train its machine, which would explain some of the bizarre prophetic messages.

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