Google's new tool teaches you ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs

Fabricius aims to use machine learning to help out Egyptologists.

Alexandra Garrett Associate Editor
Alexandra is an associate editor on CNET's Performance Optimization team. She graduated from Marymount Manhattan College in New York City, and interned with CNET's Tech and News teams while in school. Prior to joining CNET full time, Alexandra was a breaking news fellow at Newsweek, where she covered current events and politics.
Expertise Culture, How-To, Tech, Home, Wellness, Money, News
Alexandra Garrett

Google wants to teach you to read and write ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs with the launch of a new toolFabricius is available for free on the Google Art and Culture website and app starting Wednesday. 

Fabricius' virtual Egyptologist guides you through six steps on your way to learning ancient hieroglyphs. After finishing up each step, you can translate your own messages to hieroglyphics to share with friends and family through the site's "Play" tab. 

Fabricius was made in collaboration with the Australian Center for Egyptology at Macquarie University, Psycle Interactive, Assassin's Creed Origins developer Ubisoft and Egyptologists from around the globe to facilitate researchers' work, Google said.

"So far, experts had to dig manually through books upon books to translate and decipher the ancient language--a process that has remained virtually unchanged for over a century," Chance Coughenour, Google Arts and Culture program manager, said in a release. "Fabricius includes the first digital tool -- that decodes Egyptian hieroglyphs built on machine learning." 

The tool is being released as open source and Fabricius could be expanded to other ancient languages in the future, Google noted.

Watch this: Google fined by Belgian data authority, Amazon introduces Dash Cart