Google Announces New Language Developments

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I’ve taken classes in Latin, Spanish, and French, and it would be bad for all of us if we had to rely on my understanding of those languages.  But those of you who are better with languages – and who are also familiar with some less common ones – should know that Google’s looking for volunteer translators.

Vlad Patryshev, a software engineer, revealed on the Official Google Blog that “[m]any Google products . . . currently support more than 170 languages, from Abhazian to Zulu.”  And of that impressive amount, “Translations into most of these languages are done by volunteers from around the world who are eager to help people view and search the web in their own native language.”

Patryshev was also quick to point out that these volunteers haven’t signed their lives away; “it usually takes weeks for an individual volunteer to finish translating one site,” he wrote.  So if you’ve got the ability, some spare time, and an interest in aiding Google, the company’s new Google in Your Language page may be worth a look; it outlines some of the guidelines and FAQs with which translators should become acquainted, and provides a relatively quick way to get started.

Still, since only a small number of people will be able to help Google in these matters, perhaps it’s best to move on to a related development: the company made its Desktop for Mac program available in nine more languages (or eight if, like me, you don’t consider the translation into “UK English” all that remarkable).

Rose Yao, a Mac product manager, wrote “[w]e look forward to lots more of you trying it and sending us feedback from all over, and in different languages” in regards to the Mac event, but the words could apply just as well to both occurrences.

Google Announces New Language Developments
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