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Friday, June 10, 2011


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Actually, Google changed their and the API will be transitioned into a paid service, as I noted on my blog (http://poultryreport.blogspot.com/2011/06/p-is-for-paid.html), citing the original Google source.


*changed their mind

oops. typos.

Ferd Frederix

It would be a tragedy to lose translation. If you cannot chat, you are mute. If you cannot read, you are deaf. This will effect everyone, including English users, as we are only about 40% of the current SL user base. Imagine how it will be if a more typical 2% language group can no longer chat with 98% of us. And they add up to 60% of the user base!

However, there are ways out of this jam. The Lindens could easily make Google translation continue for those who wish to pay by simply adding a text field for the API key into the Ctrl-P preferences.

There are many scripted translators available. Scripted translators, like my free Google Translator, are easily modifiable to accept an API key from Bing or Google. All you will have to do to keep your scripted translator running is register a free account at Bing, click a link, and copy and paste the API key into chat. 1000 translations per day is free.

I'll have to wait and see what the costs are for the text translators and decide what to do then. If the costs are reasonable, I'll just pay them. My free Chat-to-Speech translator costs me a few pennies every time it is used, which I just pay out of pocket as the costs are nominal for the few thousand users I have so far. Demo here: http://secondlife.mitsi.com/cgi/llspeaker.plx

"The Translation API uses an Application Key unique to each user/application that allows one to collect statistics on the application." I have over 100,000 SL chat translators in the wild that use my API key, and I can assure you there is no Google or other report available to anyone, except perhaps Google, to know how much chat is translated or anything else about the chat system in SL.

Bing is the only viable free alternative that I know of. They purchased the old Yahoo/Systran business some years ago. At the moment, Bing is still free, and better in some ways than Google, but with fewer languages. How they will do under the obvious flood of users heading their way is, as Nalates puts it, another story.

Nalates Urriah

Thanks for the kind words.

Opensource Obscure caught the change in Google's thinking on the subject and posted it in comments.

I haven't seen any new discussion in the group meetings or mailing lists. I don't expect any until after Google gives people some idea of cost.

Nalates Urriah

Over lapping comment posts.

I haven't dug into the details but Google API stats are here: http://trends.builtwith.com/javascript/Google-API

Tateru Nino

Yep. Uccello's right. The announcement that it would be transitioned to a pay-service instead was last week.

Hamlet Au

Uccello, that Google blog link you pointed to lists the Google Translate API as still set to go down in December, and doesn't mention anything about it going to a pay service. Also says that on the API page:


Am I missing something?

Emperor Norton

Maybe LL might want to pay for google translation since it is such and enhancement for SL?


I can understand the concern about Google translation shut down for SL. For translators and clients in need for professional translations it is not that bad, in my eyes. I have seen some medical translations that had been translated using google. Besides, there are other translation engines yet and to come. So don't worry, communication in Second Life will be continued!


I can also understand the concern about Google translation shut down for Second Life. There are many in the translation services industry who have revelled over this as new business has been generated - but for SL the paid API is the way forward.


I can think that why Google shut it down. There are legal translations and some others to follow.

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