lingro – marvellous translation/learning service

There are tons of translation services out there but Lingro, I think, is a little slice of genius. You paste a url into it’s search bar – as below:

Lingro search bar

It then opens the page with all the text (including the hyperlinks) clickable for translation – so if there’s a word you don’t recognise – click on it and you get a pop-up (quickly too) with a translation into the language you’ve chosen, and an audio snippet of the word in it’s native tongue. This is what it looks like:

Lingro pop-up

The little slice of genius comes because it remembers what words you’ve clicked on – so as you work through a document/page it’s automatically building a wordlist of the words you didn’t know. You can review them in that browser session without having to sign up – and you can sign up in 20 secs without even giving an email address. Once you’ve signed up you can save your wordlists – organise them into groups and test yourself with a flash-card game. You get a quick flash of the full definitions – then you can test yourself with cards that flip between word and definition.

Lingro flash cards

A single Lingro flash-card

It’s only available for English, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Polish at the moment (though they are adding languages) and it was a bit wobbly on a couple of sites I tried it with (mainly because they had a very cluttered structure), but all in all I’d say it’s just about a perfect Web2.0 service – light-touch, does one thing well, doesn’t make you jump through hoops: and you can upload txt, docs or pdf’s to it if you want help with something not on the web. Bravo Lingro!

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