The future tablet would facilitate communications with the local population on foreign soil.
The DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) has been working for almost three years on a translation initiative. Called the Broad Operational Language Translation (BOLT) program, it attempts to create new techniques for automated translation and linguistic analysis that can be applied to text and speech in online and in-person communication.
A US soldier would speak in English into the tablet and it would immediately translate his words into a local language.
DARPA hopes to have a prototype ready for testing before the end of 2014.