|One of very cool facts about the internet is that it is truly global in|
scope. You can send emails to people all over the planet, visit newsgroups
and find posts in different languages, and you can rest assured that your
web site will probably be seen by people of other cultures and
It still boggles my mind when I surf to a Russian or Czechoslovakian site. I
still feel a thrill when I find pages from the People's Republic of China,
Hungary and Vietnam. This is because I grew up during the Cold War era, and
clearly remember speeches where Ronald Reagan referred to Russia as the evil
empire. Yet now we can surf their web sites at will, and people in Russia
can look at ours as often as they like.
Personally, I think this is the true purpose of the internet, and it's great
promise - to help people communicate with one another. By talking (or
sending emails or whatever) we can become more in tune with each other's
needs, desires, lifestyles, hopes, dreams and other emotions, which in turn
allows us all to understand what's going on and why people act the way that
Surfing the internet I have come to know people in Russia, one of the most
powerful countries in the world, had to stand in line to get potatoes,
something that I eat everyday and take for granted. I have come to tears
learning about famines in Africa and felt joy learning of a South African
woman's new child. These are experiences that I may never have shared had I
not been surfing the internet.
However, one of the frustrations of this vast melding of cultures and
communications is language. Many of these pages, emails and postings are
written in languages which are not known to me. I am sure that virtually
everyone has felt the same frustration of seeing a wonderful web page and
not being able to understand what the author was attempting to communicate.
You will be happy to know that you can use any of the following free
translation services to translate text from one language to another.
In a strange and wonderful book called "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", a
small creature known as a Babelfish allows you to understand
(telepathically) the speech of any other race in the entire galaxy. All you
need to do is put this small fish into your ear. The fish "eats" speech
(more or less) and excretes a telepathic translation into your brain.
If only it were that simple. Needless to say, the Babelfish service (which
was purchased by Altavista) is not that good, but nonetheless, it serves the
purpose. Simply paste some text into the box (or choose a webpage), select
the "To" and "From" languages and click a button. Within a short time the
text will be translated for you. It's not perfect but it works.
You can use this service two ways: by registering, you get a mail address of
email@example.com. Messages send to that mail address are automatically
converted from one language to your preferred language. T-Mail forwards the
translation to your current e-mail address.
If you don't want to register, you can use your current e-mail account and
send a message to a buddy (or yourself perhaps). By typing the appropriate
T-Mail address on the Cc: line of the same message before sending it, you
instruct T-Mail to translate the email message from one language to another.
The original message is delivered as usual to the person on the To: line.
The copy is sent to the translator, translated and sent to the person on the
Similar to Babelfish, this service allows you to translate a web page (or
search engine results) from one language to another.
With T-Text, you simply paste some text in a box, select the translation,
click a button and viola, you have the translation.
About the Author
Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets at
http://www.internet-tips.net - Visit our website any time to read
over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your
internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.
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