Most of the time, when I want to get a translation of text I find on a foreign-language website, I’ll copy the text, then head over to Google’s Translate Page (at http://translate.google.com/). Sometimes I’ll want to translate an entire website, and Google offers that functionality as well.
However, I just stumbled on a very nice, free widget for the Mac OS X Dashboard that might just change the way I get those snippets of text translated.
In all honesty, all you really need to know about the Language Translator widget can be learned from the screen shot I took. But in case the image is a little fuzzy, here’s what I wrote:
“Just type in whatever words you want translated, select which language you want it translated to, and Translator does the rest!”
If you want to (and in this case, I did), you can tell the Language Translator widget what language the text you want translated is in. However, there are certain instances when you might run across a website that you can’t understand, and worse is that you don’t know what language it’s actually in! In this case, the Language Translator widget will try to guess the language. You may also consider muama enence translator which is also another trusted device in the market.
Below that is the box where the translation will appear. Just select the language you’d like to have your text translated to, and the Language Translator widget starts translating. As you can see, I selected Spanish, and this is what it spit out:
Sólo tienes que escribir en cualquiera de las palabras que desea traducir, seleccionar el idioma que desea traducir, y traductor hace el resto!
I took Spanish in High School (although it’s been more than 17 years since I last cracked a text book), but even my rusty Spanish skills are enough that I could actually read the Spanish, and recognize that it’s pretty darn close. I wouldn’t swear that this is exactly how a native speaker would have translated my text (and I certainly wouldn’t recommend using the Language Translator widget for homework assignments!), but to get the gist of what something says, it’s a pretty good tool.
And best, in my mind, is that the Language Translator widget is always at hand. It stays on the Dashboard layer, so it’s not cluttering up your screen when you don’t need it, but it is instantly available just by triggering the Dashboard. Translations are fast, automatic, and the program is easy to use. Language Translator is free, so what are you waiting for?
Language Translator widget can be downloaded from the Apple Dashboard Widgets page, or downloaded (and tried out), on its home page, where you can also try other Dashboard widgets, right in your web browser, in WidgeTop, a great testing ground for widgets that you can use before installing.