Talk:Babel Fish (website)

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I saw on RC a blocked user with the rule that says that Babel Fish editors are not allowed to edit Wikipedia. Where is the source?? 22:03, 20 May 2004 (UTC)

What it meant was that the Babel Fish IPs were blocked from editing. That is to prevent people from using the translator as an anonymizer service. It also tears up pages that it edits, in an attempt to translate the text. People who work for Babel Fish are allowed to edit Wikipedia, but they may have a problem if they edit from a certain range of blocked IPs. Guanaco 22:12, 20 May 2004 (UTC)


Source for my change to the Babel Fish's mechanism is from an audio copy of the Hitchhikers original radio series: it feeds on brain wave energy, absorbing all unconscious frequencies, and then excreting telepathically a matrix formed from the conscious frequencies of nerve signals picked up from the speech centres of the brain. The practical upshot of which is if you stick one in your ear, you can instantly understand anything said to you in any form of language. The speech you hear decodes the brain-wave matrix. There is a slightly different written version here. -Wikibob | Talk 21:54, 2004 Jun 29 (UTC)

The talking fish motive is from the Grimm Brothers

It's actually older: from memory, one of the Germanic heroes, either Sigmund or Sigurd, caught a fish for a dwarf and cooked it, but was testing the flesh with his thumb (What can I say? Germanic heroes are not renowned for their intelligence) to see if it was cooked through, and scalded himself. After he sucked his thumb to take the pain away, he could understand the language of the birds. Thanks, I'd forgotten I knew that :D
Nuttyskin (talk) 16:16, 15 May 2009 (UTC)


After translating and back-translating "Jar Jar Binks is an idiot." I got this: "The cancer thway by price of land it in the adjacent waters which attaches a header the adjacent waters the kettle where the kettle which comes in contact comes in contact by the Binks." -- 7 July 2005 04:23 (UTC)

Polished Translation[edit]

The German article about the folding bridge contains the expression "Mai 2004" which is absent from the English version. Can a fluent German speaker provide a more complete translation? Zanzare 20:25, 24 November 2005 (UTC)

Example (removed)[edit]

the given example in the article is not a very good one in my opinion, what's more important: the translation by the german speaker is full of flaws. I (German)tried to correct but don't have the time right now to really finish. It is still not right. If you believe this kind of example is usefull, say it here. Maybe sometime someone (me) will come back to this and finish the translation. As said, right now it is still not perfect although i corrected some of it.

An example of Babel Fish translation and its flaws This example comes from the folding bridge article, problem words and phrases are in italics:

Original German ...Die Hörnbrücke ist Anfang bzw. Endpunkt einer im Mai 2004 eröffneten touristischen Ferienstraße: Die Deutsche Fährstraße - von Bremervörde bis zur Kieler Förde - verbindet rund 50 verschiedene Fähren, Brücken, Schleusen, Sperrwerke und maritime Museen; Wahrzeichen sind die Schwebefähren in Rendsburg und in Osten (Oste); eine weitere Fähre dieser Art stand bis 1923 in der damaligen Kaiserlichen Werft in Kiel.[1]

Babel Fish Translation ...The hearing bridge is at the beginning and/or terminator point of one in May 2004 opened routistic holidays road: The German driving race - from Bremervoerde to the Kieler Foerde - connects approximately 50 different ferries, bridges, air-locks, barriers and maritime museums; Landmarks are the schwebefaehren in Rendsburg and in the east (Oste); a further ferry of this kind stood until 1923 in the imperial one at that time threw in Kiel.

Version polished by a fluent German speaker

...The Hörnbrücke (about 'hearing bridge') is the beginning and terminating point of a scenic route which was opened in May 2004: this tourist route called the Deutsche Fährstraße (German Ferry Route) - from Bremervörde to the Kieler Förde - connects approximately 50 different ferries, bridges, ship locks, tidal barriers and maritime museums and its landmarks of the Rendsburg and Osten (Oste) transporter bridges.

Note that it is not called the hearing bridge but this is a reasonable literal translation

-- 22:25, 21 January 2006 (UTC)

BabelFish Rulez![edit]

I was amazed at the quality of translations from Russian to English. In fact I created a new article Russian nobility from ru:Дворянство. Very little changes were necessary to the sentence structure. [2] I did have to spend some time checking that the wikilinks point to the right English articles. Petri Krohn 01:43, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Requested move (2006)[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

This should be at Babel Fish which is currently a redirect to Babel fish. The fictional animal is always rendered with a lower case. There should be disambiguation notes between these pages but there is no need for the parenthetical title on this page because the capitalizataion makes it unique. savidan(talk) (e@) 20:01, 18 June 2006 (UTC)


  • Oppose It is a bad idea to disambiguate on upper and lower case letters --Philip Baird Shearer 16:29, 19 June 2006 (UTC)


savidan if you request another page move at WP:RM please follow the steps for requesting a page move which includes putting the page where the discussion about the requested move is taking place into the request on the WP:RM page. --Philip Baird Shearer 16:33, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

Result: not moved[edit]

Not moved, because of lack of consensus and solid rational. -- Kim van der Linde at venus 02:04, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

The above discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

That logo...[edit]

Someone with more markup experience than me should do something about that logo image. It needs to be set apart with a frame, and a caption. GodSka 23:40, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Example translations[edit]

It doesn't seem ideal to be using "the first paragraph in this article" for the example translations, when that paragraph is liable to change without editors bothering to retranslate all the examples. A piece of fixed example text (the first paragraph of a public domain book?) would work better, but my current browser isn't up to dealing with Korean and Japanese translations. --McGeddon 18:27, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I'd go farther (further?) and say we shouldn't have any examples at all. The software changes over time - an example we give now may not work when somebody reads it. They can do it themselves, if they want. - DavidWBrooks 19:54, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Good point. There's some argument that example translations can demonstrate the strengths and weaknesses of the translation system, but it would be better to explain those strengths and weaknesses, than to leave the reader to pick them out. (In fact, it's not particularly demonstrative to show translations from English into other languages, because many English-speaking Wikipedia readers cannot read those languages fluently - maybe Babel Fish is great at translating English into French or Japanese, and just garbles things when going back the other way.) --McGeddon 01:07, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
For the examples, when inputting the first paragraph of this article into Babelfish, let's enter "Babelfish" as one word instead of two words, and see what happens? 16:23, 2 April 2007 (UTC)


The website deserves a mention as an imposter website too. {Slash-|-Talk} 01:39, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Imposter is an inappropriate word for the website since predates Yahoo! Babel Fish (and indeed Altavista's use of the term babelfish) by almost 18 months. The Babel Fish Corporation (at has had as many as "38 employees, 75 language teachers and 7,500 certified/accredited translators". The domain name was registered by The Babel Fish Corporation on 28 June 1995. Altavista did not launch their online translation service until almost 18 months later when, on December 9, 1997, Digital Equipment Corporation and SYSTRAN S.A. launched AltaVista Translation Service. source: (Locosman (talk) 00:14, 21 July 2012 (UTC))

Jerusalem Post hoax[edit]

The 2007-11-06 change refers to a diplomatic incident that would have been caused by Babelfish. This is a hoax, and I've included three reasons to support this. The Dutch Foreign Minister did appear in Parliament 2 days later and didn't mention it, which is further proof. However, I cannot find references for it yet. If needed, will have them very soon. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:53, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Yahoo and subsequent changes to Babelfish[edit]

Before Yahoo got ahold of Babelfish, you could put more than 150 words to translate. Now you can't. Should any changes between Altavista - Yahoo Babelfish be mentioned? (I prefer old Babelfish by far. The layout and stuff. Plus, they got rid of the cute, simple fish.) Neobinary (talk) 21:29, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

Any idea of the business aspect of the changeover to Yahoo? Was a deal struck, consideration paid etc? Anyone know?

Non-ASCII urls[edit]

They work, but wiki won't let me remove/modify the section calming they don't. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:02, 16 November 2008 (UTC)


In the infobox, babelfish is described as noncommercial. Surely its commercial, even if you dont have to pay for it? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:01, 18 January 2011 (UTC)

Russian and Chinese Texts Turned into Garbled Characters[edit]

I was able to use Babel Fish to translate Russian and Chinese words/sentences/texts into English, and had used it many times before. But today I was dismayed when the input Russian text (in Cyrillic alphabet) or Chinese text (in Chinese characters) were turned into garbled characters (such as & #1050; & #1080; & #1090; & #1072; & #1081;) and the output result turned into the same thing. Could anyone tell what the problem is? Where can I get help? I use Firefox on a Mac OS X machine, by the way. Many thanks! --Roland 09:39, 29 February 2012 (UTC)

Just found that Greek alphabet are also turned into garbled characters. --Roland 01:24, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

Where to Get Help When in Trouble[edit]

Hope someone can provide the information regarding where to get help when a user is in trouble. --Roland 03:09, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

Redirects to Bing?????[edit]

This service has been discontinued and has been redirected to Bing Translator, so can you please re-write it? TheChampionMan1234 (talk) 00:14, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

  • Isn't that an Hoax?----Jorgen W (talk) 03:22, 18 June 2012 (UTC)
It looks like a hoax to me, because every time I go to, I get THEIR web site; not Bing. At this point, it will take some work to correct the entire page due to the number of edits done since then, but simply examining the web site would have revealed the truth from the beginning, regardless of finding sources that perpetuate a hoax.
The very instructions above our editing box tell us, "Encyclopedic content must be verifiable." That is redirecting to Bing is verifiably FALSE; it fails the most painfully obvious test. Therefore, I'm adding the Dubious template to this statement. Downstrike (talk) 02:13, 22 March 2013 (UTC) is not associated with Yahoo Babelfish. The official URL for it was always[edit] seems to be dead? (talk) 10:05, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

Try, that's what I've been using for the last year or two. However, it stopped working now. It redirects to a weird Bing page that's all in German. I have no idea what it says. It seems that Microsoft think that your IP address denotes what language you speak, and as I'm currently in Germany, I must speak German. Guess what geniuses, why do you think I was at Babelfish. I suppose if Microsoft ran a zoo and they saw a Lion in the Penguin enclosure, they'd feed it small fish (shortly before being mauled because it's a Lion, not a Penguin). Time to finally switch to Google translate I guess. So long and thanks for all the fish Babelfish. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:14, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

Babel Fish[edit]

Babel Fish is discontinued from Yahoo!, however its own brand is online again apparently since 2010, just check; with regard to Microsoft, both' and redirect to , the official site of Bing translator, however is the same site of Does anyone have more information on this issue?--Jorgen W (talk) 03:37, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

When I type in I end up in google search, which leads me to bing? Ottawahitech (talk) 21:05, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

The site is another online Translation site, but is not owned by Yahoo! nor Microsoft. (Locosman (talk) 20:09, 18 July 2012 (UTC))

Did Microsoft buy Babel Fish from Yahoo!?[edit]

My recent revision was rejected with the cited reason being "the source does not support the statement that the service "was not sold." The source referenced was however, being fairly new, I wasn't sure how to direct the attention to the fact that the source is really page 4 of the comments where someone from Microsoft is directly responding within the comments to questions posed within the comments. The actual commenter is and writes, on 10 Jun 2012 8:04 PM, questions and answers to many topics including: Did Microsoft buy Babel Fish from Yahoo!?

Here are some of the questions/answers that Microsoft provides regarding the Yahoo! Babel Fish transition:

Q: What happened to the Yahoo! Babel Fish site? A: After careful consideration, Yahoo! has transitioned its Babel Fish translation services to Bing Translator, which offers additional languages and features for users. Microsoft is pleased to welcome Yahoo! Babel Fish users to the Bing Translator family. Yahoo! and Microsoft have worked closely together to ensure as seamless a transition as possible from Babel Fish to Bing Translator.

Q: Did Microsoft buy Babel Fish from Yahoo!? A: No. Yahoo! has simply transitioned from Babel Fish to Bing Translator for translation services.

So...... I would hope that my carefully researched edit/contribution that I submitted on 05:40, 17 July 2012 will be accepted and that the revision that was done on 10:30, 17 July 2012 undoing my edit can now be undone by me without offending anyone. (Locosman (talk) 23:48, 20 July 2012 (UTC))

Yahoo! Babel Fish was not founded and developed by Oscar A Jofre[edit]

There seems to be a misreading of a webpage quoted as a source, namely: The "BabelFish on the move" article at is referring to The Babel Fish Corporation, a professional translation service, which owns the domain --- not to be confused with the Yahoo! Babel Fish service which was run under then under The Yahoo! Babel Fish service (at offered instant, online translations powered by machines whereas The Babel Fish Corporation (at was human powered with "38 employees, 75 language teachers and 7,500 certified/accredited translators". had been registered by The Babel Fish Corporation on 28 June 1995. Altavista did not launch their online translation service until almost 18 months later when, on December 9, 1997, Digital Equipment Corporation and SYSTRAN S.A. launched AltaVista Translation Service. source: (Locosman (talk) 21:04, 18 July 2012 (UTC))

Fair enough - I'll remove the mention of the founder. Feel free to be bold and tweak it/rewrite it as necessary, especially if you find out who the real founder was. — Mr. Stradivarius (have a chat) 21:45, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
Oh, sorry, I see you did it already. :) — Mr. Stradivarius (have a chat) 21:48, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Yahoo/Bing redirect[edit]

When i tried it just now, redirected me to instead of Bing Translator. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:41, 4 June 2013 (UTC)

Người bạn thân của tôi tên peter . Bạn ấy cao. Có khuôn mặt hình vuông. Trán của bạn ấy rộng . Mái tóc của bạn ấy màu nâu , bạn ấy trông rất dễ nhìn. Bạn ấy rất say mê môn toán. Bạn ấy háo hức học môn toán , bạn ấy rất khiêm tốn và cần cù , thi thoảng bạn còn hài hước nữa — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:26, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

Requested move 22 August 2016[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Moved to Babel Fish (website)  — Amakuru (talk) 15:10, 30 August 2016 (UTC)

Yahoo! Babel FishAltaVista Babel Fish – The site was at with the AltaVista branding for over 10 years (December 1997 to May 2008[3]). Yahoo was mentioned for only 4 years (May 2008 to May 2012). (talk) 17:49, 22 August 2016 (UTC)

  • Oppose The general wikipedia rule is to have the article reflect the current company name, on the theory that people search for it via that name - unless there is compelling reason otherwise. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 19:06, 22 August 2016 (UTC)
  • "Yahoo! Babel Fish" isn't the current name. Timmyshin (talk) 23:12, 22 August 2016 (UTC)
  • Support – As a now-defunct product onto which Yahoo had only slapped their logo before killing it, we should emphasize the historically-significant place where the product was created. Alternately, I would support a move to Babel Fish (translation software) or Babel Fish (website) which is neutral towards product ownership over the years. — JFG talk 07:48, 25 August 2016 (UTC)
    • Your latter suggestion, about using a general title, makes sense and I would support it, although I don't think going backwards in time to AltaVista is the right move. Incidentally, this is a common wikipedia problem with companies that have changed names and owners, deciding which name should be the default article title. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 18:07, 25 August 2016 (UTC)
@DavidWBrooks: We agree. So, which one would you prefer: Babel Fish (translation software) or Babel Fish (website)? — JFG talk 15:14, 27 August 2016 (UTC)
I would go with Babel Fish (website), because that was the key point: It wasn't just good translation software, it was publicly usable translation software. Since it already exists we could just turn this into a redirect and cut/paste the article text, although that would not retain the Talk page history. I don't know how to do an article Move to an existing article while retaining the Talk history.- DavidWBrooks (talk) 16:43, 27 August 2016 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.