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How about...

If you choose "two languages" you get a split comments box--left for language A, right for language B....with...a link to babelfish or google translate (or a.n. other) at the midsection (could be a vertical button with a pic of a fish...or ET Translate...or sommat)...with the question (on a mouseover?):

"Would you prefer to write your own translation, or would you like [name of piece of software] to...[have a go?]"

Language A would usually be "first choice language" (for those who read left to right I suppose.)

Then you could choose to:

View Comments in Language A
View Comments in Language B
View Comments in LA + any bilingual
View Comments in LB + any bilingual
View All Comments

Only much more funky and less clunky.

But overall, worra great way of getting multilingual without everyone having to learn four new languages.

(I can read and speak english and italian; I can--if I work at it--read french (hmmm, well, some) and spanish (again some, but a different set of some.)  German no, scandinavian, no, greek, no, dutch, no, russian, no...and what about the soon-to-be-arriving input from China, Korea (N and S), Japan, Thailand etc?

Babelfish...

(Always worth re-telling.)

The Babel fish is small, yellow and leechlike, and probably the oddest thing in the Universe. It feeds on brainwave energy received not from its own carrier but from those around it. It absorbs all unconscious mental frequencies from this brainwave energy to nourish itself with. It then excretes into the mind of its carrier a telepathic matrix formed by combining the conscious thought frequencies with nerve signals picked up from the speech centres of the brain which has supplied them. The practical upshot of all this is that if you stick a Babel fish in your ear you can instantly understand anything said to you in any form of language.

Are we prepared for all that (potential) chatter?  ET publicity offshoot--fantastic resource for language teachers!

(I wonder if you could limit the length of bilingual comments until a user posting them got a certain number of recommends?  To stop people posting huge screeds then clicking "translate"--I don't know why I think that would be a problem...really...but discrete bilingual gives me the chance to learn another language.  Huge texts mean I go with the one I know...may just be me.)

My tuppence ha'penny.

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Mon Jan 22nd, 2007 at 07:04:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Start simple... Let's see if we can add a "language" attribute to diaries.

"It's the statue, man, The Statue."
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jan 22nd, 2007 at 11:11:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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