Yahoo! has revived AltaVista’s Babel Fish, the translation service that’s been around since the dawn of search engines (or so it seems), by integrating it into Yahoo! Search.
Since last week, the new and improved Babel Fish is available at http://babelfish.yahoo.com. The translation service now lets you:
- Translate up to 150 words at a time;
- Run a search based on text Babel Fish translated for you;
- Translate an entire Web page;
- Choose from 38 language combinations for translation – from “traditional Chinese to English” to “Portuguese to French”;
- Translate straight from your browser by adding a Babel Fish toolbar button.
I hope the makeover gives Babel Fish, which has been languishing in obscurity for some time, a new lease on life. Even though (or especially because) translation results can sometimes err on the side of the humorous rather than the accurate, Babel Fish is a very handy tool that is pretty good at giving you a rough idea of what foreign language texts say, and can be quite entertaining in the process.