English language Stories October 31, 2012

Google is updating its Google Translate service with a few new features today. Among the new features is grouped clusters of synonyms for easier viewing, and frequency indicators that mark translations as “common, uncommon, or rare”. Google also explained a new “reverse translations” feature:

Our users often tell us that they check our translations by translating them back into their original language. Reverse translations can distinguish translations of different meanings and reveal subtle differences among similar words. Each translation is now annotated with its most frequent reverse translations.

The new grouped synonyms will initially only be available when translating into English, but Google said more languages will be added soon. Google also described how the frequency indicators will work: expand full story

English language Stories May 3, 2012

There are more than a few tools online to help you learn a new language, but none are as effective as immersing yourself in another country’s language by actually traveling there. Since we all do not have the time to do so, Google’s Creative Lab is providing a similar immersive experience through a new Chrome extension that employs the Google Translate API for translating certain text on any given webpage.

Available through the Google Chrome store, Google teamed up Use All Five to create the “Language Immersion for Chrome” extension and to currently provide options for translating a page into a mix of “Frenglish, Spanglish or even Tagaloglish.” However, all 64 languages supported by Google Translate are available. You can also roll over words to hear them pronounced, or click them to translate to English.

Within the extension, you will be able to filter the level of immersion with a sliding scale going from “Novice” to “Fluent” as you become more comfortable with any given language. A video demo of the extension in action is above. expand full story

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English language Stories July 4, 2011

BloombergThe New York Times and Dow Jones today report that Microsoft and China’s Baidu have entered a cooperation pact for former to provide English language results for the the latter’s queries.

“This is not good news for Google,” said Jake Li, who rates Baidu shares “accumulate” at Guotai Junan Securities in Shenzhen. Most Chinese Internet users currently prefer Google’s English-language search results over Baidu, whose service will be improved by the partnership with Microsoft, he said.

The terms of the deal weren’t made public but the deal will likely work similarly to the Bing-Yahoo deal last year where both companies share the revenues from advertisements.  Baidu is the dominant search provider in China, one of the few places that Google doesn’t reign supreme.  It had previously signed a mobile only deal with Microsoft but rumors of this deal first surfaced a month ago.

The Baidu-Bing service will go live later this year.

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