Altavista Babelfish is the oldest online translation services in the World Wide Web that accurately translates sentences in different languages, which include Spanish, Swedish, Russian, Portuguese, Korean, Japanese, Italian, Greek, German, French, Dutch, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese and English.
The name Babelfish was derived from the “Babel fish”, the fictional species in the series written by Douglas Adams entitled The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. In turn, the name of the species pertains to the Tower of Babel, a place mentioned in the Bible where language confusion took place.
On the 9th of December, 1997, AltaVista Translation Service was launched by Systran S.A. and Digital Equipment Corporation at babelfish.altavista.com. In the month of February 2003, AltaVista was purchased by Overture Services, Inc. Later in July 2003, Yahoo took over Overture and on May 9, 2008, its web address has been changed to babelfih.yahoo.com.
Apart from being able to translate words and phrases, Babel Fish is also able to translate web pages. This is the reason why it is considered as a very helpful tool for users who come across a site they are interested in, which is written in a foreign language.
To translate an entire web page, all a user needs to do is paste in the URL of the website and click “Translate”. While the translation is not perfect, users will have a clear grasp of what the site is all about. This feature can effectively open up web sections which might have been inaccessible to them. On the other hand, when comparing the original and translated page, users just have to click the link stating “view this page in its original language” located at the top of the screen.
Yahoo Babel Fish is dubbed as a very helpful tool for people who are in need of instant translation service. It is completely for free and very easy to use, so take advantage of it now!