Microsoft Translator Team Blog

News and Views from the Microsoft Translator Team in Microsoft Research.

September, 2008

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  • Microsoft Translator Team Blog

    Windows Live Messenger translation bot now available!

    • 297 Comments

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    The Microsoft Translator team is excited to announce the new translation bot for Windows Live Messenger! This Messenger bot does translations for you. Just add mtbot@hotmail.com to your contacts and start chatting. You can have one-on-one conversations with the bot, or you can invite a friend and chat in different languages with the bot translating for you.  As usual, remember that machine translation isn’t perfect – slang especially will give the engine trouble.

    You can also access Windows Live Messenger on your smartphone to use the bot to translate simple sentences while you’re traveling to other countries!

    The translator bot is localized into all of the languages for which we have translation support on www.microsofttranslator.com:

    The translator Bot supports the following translation languages (the latest list of languages can be found here): 

        • Arabic
        • Bulgarian
        • Chinese Simplified
        • Chinese Traditional
        • Czech
        • Danish
        • Dutch
        • English
        • Haitian Creole
        • Finnish
        • French
        • German
        • Greek
        • Hebrew
        • Italian
        • Japanese
        • Korean
        • Polish
        • Portuguese
        • Russian
        • Spanish
        • Swedish
        • Thai

    More languages will be rolled out over the next several months.  Start using the bot and let us know your feedback!

    FYI - at any time while you’re chatting with the bot, just type “TBot ?” to get a list of commands that the bot understands:

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    Update (1/25/2010): Updated language list and links.

  • Microsoft Translator Team Blog

    IE8 Beta 2 - Translation Accelerator

    • 39 Comments

    Last week the Internet Explorer team announced the Beta 2 release of IE8 (you can download it here).  This is great news for users of translation services, because IE8 incorporates translation directly into your browsing experience!  No need to cut and paste text from the site you are viewing into our landing page.  You now have ready access to the service – from any page you visit!  Now you can simply select some text and then click on the blue Accelerators icon. With the "Translate with Windows Live" Accelerator in Internet Explorer 8, you can get an in-place translation of the selected text displayed directly on the page.

    Here's how it works:

    Select a block of text on a web page:

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    See the blue arrow that now hovers on the page – click on it:

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    You have a few options here – if you hover over the menu item “Translate with Windows Live”, you will see an instant preview of the translated text (you can also change your language here):

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    If you click on the menu item instead of hovering over, you'll be taken to the Translator main page and the text will be translated there. Note that the URL text box is pre-populated with the page you were browsing before, so if you decide to translate the whole page all you have to do is click the button

    Other options:

    · Without selecting any text, right-click anywhere in the page and click on the menu item. Your web page will be directed to the bilingual viewer, and begin to be translated.

    · Select a hyperlink, right click to invoke the menu and click on 'Translate with Windows Live'. The hyperlinked target page will be directed to the bilingual viewer, and begin to be translated.

    Enjoy! Please let us know your feedback on the experience. 

  • Microsoft Translator Team Blog

    Translation powered by....Microsoft Translator!

    • 21 Comments

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    Our team is celebrating a major milestone today - last week we successfully transitioned all of our translation services to technology developed right here in Microsoft Research! 

    As some of you may have noticed, up until last week, some of our languages were still supported by a third party technology for general domain requests.  Here's the summary of what this release means:

    • Translation now fully powered by the Microsoft Translator technology is available through Live Search, as well as IE8, the Windows Live Toolbar, and Windows Live Messenger.
    • All translation pairs on the site (11 English-X, 12 X-English) are powered by Microsoft Research-developed systems.
    • Two transliteration pairs (chs<->cht), courtesy of the Windows International team.
    • For several languages, better language quality.
    • And finally, the release of TBot, a translation bot for Windows Live Messenger.

    This release is the combination of all the effort that the team has put into machine translation, not only over the past months, but literally over the past years.  We are eager to hear back from our users - try out the system today and let us know what you think!

  • Microsoft Translator Team Blog

    Have you tried the Translator AddIn?

    • 16 Comments

    The Translator Add-in can be added to any web page and makes it really easy for visitors to quickly translate the page into any one of our supported languages. The translation is conveniently displayed side-by-side with the original page so that both original and translated languages are available to the reader. There are also other display options available to try out.

    This is what visitors to your website will see:

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    There’s also a cool auto-detect feature that will pick up your visitor’s browser language and offer up the word “Translator” in their native language. 

    Have you implemented this on your web sites?  What do you think?  How can we improve it? 

    If you haven’t, try it out and let us know your feedback!

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