Jun
17
2009

Year: 2009 Week: 29 Number: 108

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  • [Privacy violation?] – There was a bit of drama on the Foundation mailing lists when a KnowPrivacy study – a research project by the School of Information from University of California in Berkeley – hit the German media. It showed findings that Wikipedia, among many other websites, used "web bugs" like Google Analytics on its pages. Further investigation revealed this was triggered by content on vlswiki & huwiki. The former was added to confusion that it was a privacy violation and it turns out the Hungarian Wikipedia was just a false alarm (it was a private stats generator)

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Did you know …

… that Google has released a very handy tool for translating a Wikipedia article?

Google offers since long a free automatic translation service. Based on that Google Toolkit is released. You have a personal overview page, "a desk", where you can upload text from files or websites.

For text from (the English) Wikipedia is there a special interface designed for translating Wikipedia content. The source text must be English, the target language options are limited but there is a fair collection.

The basic idea is that the toolkit will automatically translate the text for you and then you can make fixes to the text. Not only does this help you get the translations done but it also helps Google Translate to learn from your changes and become better and better. That translation in progress can be shared with other people so the can also work on it.

How good the automatic translation is will probably differ from language to language. Translations from English to Arabic should be fair because Google used that explicitly as in example in there press release.

This tool can make it very easy to translate an article from the huge English Wikipedia to one of the many small wiki's in other languages. The toolkit may change the way Wikipedia grows in other languages. If used correctly. It can also be used to import a lot crappy new articles to a wiki.

Google Toolkit could also be useful for making translations of Wikizine, if one is interested in doing so.

Quote

“The automobile has practically reached the limit of its development” – Scientific American, 1909


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