Monday, November 16, 2009

Google Translate Adds Speech and Romanization

Today, Google announced some great improvements to its translation service. Google Translate now offers you the opportunity to hear translations read to you. The translation service now translates text as you type it rather than waiting for you to finish typing. If you want to translate an entire website, Google Translate now lets you do that by simply typing the url of the site you wish to translate into the translation text box. Click translate, and the entire site will be shown in the language of your choice. Click here to see what Free Technology for Teachers looks like in Chinese.

Google Translate
has now made it easier to handle non-Roman texts. For example, if you want to translate "how are you" into Chinese but you cannot read Chinese characters, the "show Romanization" option will write the sounds for you in English.

To learn more about all of the new translation features watch the video below.



Applications for Education
Google Translate can be a very useful tool for anyone that is studying a second language. Google Translate can also be useful for examining different perspectives of news stories. I have a colleague who teaches a global studies course in which he requires students to find, translate using Google Translate, read, and evaluate news articles written in other parts of the world.