Monday, October 22, 2007

Google Translate

My friend was weirded out about getting emails in Spanish - emails that didn't look like spam, but were subscriptions on something. What it was, we didn't know because the whole email was written in Spanish.

And then I remembered, we could actually translate the text! So I quickly went to Google Translate, copied and pasted some of the text from the email. From the translated text we found out that it was a subscription to an online magazine and there was an unsubscribe link to it. Problem solved!

BTW, with Google Translate you can translate text or a website in a number of languages, do translated search (like search in i.e. English and then get results in Spanish) and then you can also find words in the dictionary. Pretty nifty huh?

At least now whenever some of my friends sent me emails in another language (they like doing that to me) or whenever I want to read blogger friends who write in another language, I can easily translate what they wrote and understand what they're trying to say.


  1. I am sure you'll enjoy the Google tool, because it'll also let you edit the translations so that they make sense. This is a great feature if you have a blog and are concerned about the quality of the message, regardless of the language.

  2. (Dunno if my earlier comment got submitted properly, so here it goes again.)

    They should integrate this directly with Gmail. I also get (spam) mail in other languages (mostly Spanish, too).

    Like the "Is this message garbled?" feature, perhaps they could have a "Can't understand this message?" link to a page that tries to determine (by heuristics) the source language, then translates it into your currently selected display language.

    Or, if the heuristics prove accurate enough, provide the option to apply it directly before viewing the mail, and just put a notice like, "This message was translated automatically from Spanish to English. To view the message in its original language, click here." and that takes you to the original message.

    Anyway - maybe something to suggest to your guys in Mountain View...

  3. @site translations - correct!

    @aisrael - uyyy! thanks for visiting my blog and for the feedback... I'll be sending it to MV. thanks! :) (I didn't get the first comment you sent.)

  4. This is one of my favorite applications. Have to be careful though, I almost sent an "I desire you" message in Spanish to a guy, when I just want to greet him " I wish you get everything your heart wants" :)