Archived copy of A Swedish wolf in Norway

Miscellaneous technobabble from a Swede in Norway.

Google suddenly gains Swedish translation

Published: 2008-05-09 10:05:54

All of a sudden today all the English search results on Swedish Google have gained a “Translate this page” link. Apparently, this is something that English Google has had for quite some time, but since I always get a localised version due to my browser’s language settings, I have not seen them before. Until today, when the Swedish translation popped up.

I was expecting to see something like the bad TranExp word-for-word computer translations that some sites keep posting as “Swedish” versions of their home pages, hoping to attract visitors, but that rather scare them away, or something more Babelfish-like that can be understood. So I tried it with a page that I do translate myself, namely the Debian home page.

The Debian home page has an official Swedish translation, done by myself, so I compared it with Google’s translation and found that they must pick up, somehow, that the official translation corresponds to the original, because it has picked up most of my manual translation. There are some mismatched, for instance “Site map” has turned into “Sajtkarta” instead of “Sidöversikt” as I have translated it, and the security advisories look weird, but overall it looks quite good.

Trying the translation of a page that does not have an exact official translation, like Opera Software’s home page does give a slightly worse result, but still quite comprehensible. And its translation of the “fast facts” page is lightyears ahead of what TranExp produced.

It seems they also have support for translating from Swedish, which means that you can now “enjoy” Swedish tabloids, if you would want to…

Tags: translation google


I noticed that Google translates "svensk" into "American"??? It was one of the bylines about the earthquake in China, where original text said "Ingen svensk rapporterad omkommen". After the translation, it instead said that no American had been reported dead!

By the way, the translation engine Babelfish uses is SysTran, which have sold a Swedish language edition for a few years, only that Babelfish hasn't been updated to include it.

Yeah, I noticed that too. It does have some weird translations that are clearly wrong. You can suggest a better translation by clicking the text, though, not sure how well that works…

Henrik Larsson: "I compete to get jump" :-D
The translator also has problems with detecting when "är" refers to one or many people/things. It surprises me a bit, but perhaps too much semantics are involved to get that right.

Yet again, there is the svensk -> American translation, and in another place Sverige has been translated as .. India?!! I think someone has been playing tricks on the translation service.

"What is it about guys and their ends removed?" is another mind-boggling headline from today's issue of the same tabliod. It sounds painful, but it turns out "end removed" is just another word for male genetalia.

This was originally posted on My Opera at
Please note that links may be outdated and any information included here may be obsolete.

← Download Jack Rubinacci’s latest album for free (as in beer) | Obligatory hype blog entry → | Back to the post index | Back to the archive index | Peter's homepage