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Web person at the Imperial War Museum, just completed PhD about digital sustainability in museums (the original motivation for this blog was as my research diary). Posting occasionally, and usually museum tech stuff but prone to stray. I welcome comments if you want to take anything further. These are my opinions and should not be attributed to my employer or anyone else (unless they thought of them too). Twitter: @jottevanger

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Google Translate widget: awesome

Some time back I had an abortive go at making a bookmarklet to do various things with Google Translate that weren't that straightforward. It all went a bit off the boil but thankfully it's pretty irrelevant now that Google's done what was needed all along and given us a dead easy widget to drop into your site and do good-enough translations on-the-fly. Links on the page are also appended with parameters so that it will translate subsequent pages too, as long as the widget is on them. Nice.
Have a look at the MOL pages. The layout is not optimal (it's down at the bottom) so I need to experiment with changing that, but it works nicely on the pages where the one footer I've changed is used. Took 2 minutes. I had to refresh the page after its first load to get it to work, which may be because I have the widget at the bottom and the javascript file didn't load properly or something. Wha'evah.
Actually I'd still like a bookmarklet (not G Toolbar) that lets me highlight a bit of text and translate to/from a language of my choice. Got a bit stuck with the whole IE prompt thing but hey, perhaps I'll have another go.


Seb Chan said...

we got inspired by your footer insert . . . thanks for being the canary in the mine, so to speak.

Jeremy said...

Great stuff! And thanks for the mention on your blog (first thing I read when I checked my reader this morning). Like you say, it's hard to resist something so damn easy and so, well, good enough!
I need to go back and make the thing layout better, but of course once you know it's there you only need to click once for it to work right across your site - and indeed if your links point to any others that happen to use the widget too then I think they will also pick up your setting (coz it rewrites all links). Perhaps I should link MOL's site to yours just to check this out.

Koven said...

Can't believe I didn't know about this before! Dropped it onto my site a few minutes ago, and it's working like a dream. Thanks for the tip!

P.S., you missed out not going to Ground Kontrol--they had "Discs of Tron."