On 03 May 2007 | By Nuno Bastei | Permalink
The time has come. Today we begin to open the kimono on Traduwiki. We build the site with this frustration in mind, that there are (so) many interesting docs available for free on the Web which could reach a broaden audience if there were translated. Usually, the situation is: you read a nice review on a blog, you are interested to read further, you click and lands on a German page. ("mensch!") Usually, your second action is to go on BabelFish or Google Translate to get a rough translation of the text. But if you've tried to read a German publication with Google Translate, you know how inaccurate it is.
It's how we ended up with Traduwiki, which a wiki (like Wikipedia, for instance) to share efforts on the translation and to enhance translation quality by the time. Anybody is welcome, anybody could contribute, anybody can translate.
Anybody can translate
By saying anybody can translate, we really mean it. Traduwiki hashes each text into smaller chunks. They're limited to 2 phrases maximum. Each text contains lots of short, easy to understand phrases. Usually, those phrases are grouped together. Even though you think you don't know master a language enough to use it, you can get the meaning of those phrases and thus, are able to translate them.
Traduwiki was built to satisfy common scenarios like:
- Read Karl's texts without having to ask him to write in your own language
- Help local physicist Paola reach a broaden audience
- Impress your high-profile teacher by practicing your foreign language
- Understand foreign language better by comparing the original and its translated version
- See how many people can help you improve your spoken language
- Review all the texts tagged "Elections 2007"
Traduwiki helps any kind of texts and authors. People here don't translate only for them, they do for their friends, their parents, their neighbors or the unknown guy sitting over there at the cybercafé. They truly understand that the Internet has no geographic boundaries, and that they are contributing to take down its last one, the language barrier.
As a start, Traduwiki will be providing books and text documents under an open source license or one of the Creative Commons licenses. It's not we don't want any fights over the copyrights of a text, but we think open source is the way to go for spreading the culture and knowledge.
Translated texts will de facto remain freely accessible to all on traduwiki.org. We'll also provide some other formats in the future, like the PDF. They'll remain free to download and distribute.
We tried as much as possible to keep the site and its functionalities simple to handle. You can judge by yourself that within three clicks, you can jump on a text to translate. But still, we know that Traduwiki could be enhanced. If you have some remarks, noticed some bugs, please contact us. Thanks a million and let's wiki translate!