This Pen Speaks More Languages Than You Do
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This Pen Speaks More Languages Than You Do

This Pen Speaks More Languages Than You Do

Multilingual PenThree designers, Shi Jian, Sun Jiahao & Li Ke, have created a very cool gadget: a pen that gives you a ‘more efficient and concentrative way’ to get your text translated. This pen has been picked up and is being marketed by Yanko Design.

How does this marvelous thing work?

The tip of the device is actually a teeny tiny scanner. Called the Ivy Guide, it fits over pens and pencils, scans words as you underline what you want to have translated, and projects its translation directly onto the document. You push down a button to underline, let go of the button to project, and then press that button again to clear. It is rechargeable via USB.

Other delightful features listed on the website include: adjusts to different types of pens, has a sponge with good flexibility, is ergonomic, has a connection to transfer data to the laptop, uses ‘contactless charging technology with magnetic induction’, is easy to use, and is pocket-sized, ‘pure and lightweight’.

When you are reading a foreign language material, no more stopping to go look for your dictionary or browsing to on your iPhone. The three clever designers responsible for the wonderful gadget hope to relieve people of the experience of heavy dictionaries. (But I still love the heft and gravitas of an old school hard-bound dictionary. What book could be statelier?)

I want it

I didn’t find a link to buy it or I probably would have pulled out my credit card. Actually, Business Insider reports that the device is currently in its concept stage. It’s not clear how many languages the device will handle. Regardless, the designers hope the device will help people better understand foreign languages and improve comprehension.

How can it not? I want to grab my Spanish version of Don Quixote and give it another go. That book was the cause of a number of migraines during grad school.

I can also picture using it to underline a menu item. Is that roasted pig or roasted pigeon?

Who are these guys?

Yanko Design, founded in 2002, operates in Australia, Canada, India, Japan and the United States. They are a web magazine dedicated to introducing the best modern international design, in areas such as industrial design, technology, interior design, architecture, and fashion.

Yanko Design has approximately 1.8 million unique users, generating 6 million page views each month, and 41,000+ total daily newsletter subscribers. Yanko Design is on the list of’s top 100 most read blogs on the internet, currently ranked at 94 (out of 75,000,000+ blogs). They are clearly a popular and influential online design magazine.

Back to the products

Yanko Design has some very cool gadgets, with names like ‘love handles’, which is an elongated pot handle (ingenious), and something that ‘sucks in the best way’ that is a motorcycle type thing, which is a…well I don’t know what it is. (Put a comment below if you can figure it out). Also check out the ‘sexy bike pump.’

But that’s not all they’ve got: I recommend you take a few minutes out of your busy day to check this stuff out.

You can also submit your own gadget designs for consideration here.

But in the meantime, what incredible translation gadget would you want to bring to life?