Microsoft Launches Own 'Babel Fish'

While Altavista has largely disappeared from the minds of most Internet users since the emergence of Google, the Web property does still have a very popular service: its Babel Fish translator. Now, Microsoft is testing its own translation offering under the Windows Live umbrella.

Like Babel Fish, Windows Live Translator is based on technology from Systran. Users can input a block of text to translate, or select a Web site to translate. There is an option for "computer related content" which keeps the service from translating technology-related words. Little else is known about Live Translator, but Microsoft frequently tests new offerings under Windows Live, some of which survive while others don't.

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