Google World Domination is proceeding according to plan. :)
Several months ago, I noted that the good folks at Google had very thoughtfully expanded the suite of languages available in their automated translation site, Google Translate. At the time, they had more or less doubled the number of languages available for machine-assisted translation, up to 22. I happened to stop by there again this morning, only to realize they’ve done it again (once more, without fanfare).
Now, you can perform rough translations in an incredible 33 languages (plus English, so, 34). New on the menu — Catalan, Filipino, Indonesian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese. They’re leaning heavily on the Slavic tongues, with 11; second to that are the Romance and Germanic languages, with 6 each. I have to say I’d like to see a little more diversity. Where is Swahili? How about Armenian and Albanian? What about a better representation of the Indian subcontinent? But all complaints aside, congratulations to Google on yet more impressive work. What would we do without these guys? (Seriously.)
Before I close, let me offer this sidebar. I reported back in May that several translations I tested in Hindi were woefully buggy (one of them, absolutely wrong). Well, I’m happy to report today that those have been corrected. Whether Hindi is fully ready for prime-time is hard for me to judge, but every improvement increases the value of this utility.