Google Delves Deeper Into Transliteration

    April 25, 2010

As Google’s made certain content and services available for free, some newspaper editors and book publishers have come to loathe the search giant, and it wouldn’t be surprising if translators join that group, too.  Late last week, Google took several steps to make switching between languages easier on regular people.

GoogleThe most mainstream and noticeable change relates to Google Transliteration.  This product has begun to support Amharic, Hebrew, Oriya and Sinhalese, and Tigrinya, bringing the total number of supported languages to an even 22.

Then Google’s Input Method Editor, which exists for the purpose of letting people convert words while offline, has also been upgraded with the addition of five new languages (although the group’s slightly different: Amharic, Russian, Sanskrit, Serbian and Tigrinya).

Finally, a post on the Google Translate Blog asked, "Now what if you come across a language that you can speak but can’t read?  For example, if you can speak Hindi, you may know that ‘namaste’ is a greeting, however you may not be able to read ‘??????’ in Hindi script.  Our new Script Converter tool converts a given web page or piece of text from one script to another so that you can read it phonetically."

And Script Converter supports an impressive 17 languages at the moment: Bengali, English, Greek, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Sanskrit, Serbian, Tamil, Telugu, and Urdu.