The Internet has brought the world closer together and thanks to a variety of online translation tools, it has never been easier to understand it. If you are looking for English to Portuguese translation services, this article offers some advice on where to look, what to expect and offers a few tips on using the tools effectively.
Online dictionaries and translation sites
Finding the best translation service starts with deciding what you want to use it for. If you just want to translate a few words from English to Portuguese, then try an online dictionary. Freedict.com, Ectaco.co.uk and Lookwayup.com are all examples that will help you find the word you’re looking for. If you want to translate a longer piece of text, try a free translation site such as Google Translate, Babelfish or Babylon. Follow some simple rules to make sure that you get the best translation possible. Use short sentences and thoroughly check your spelling and grammar. Avoid using slang and colloquial expressions as these can produce some odd results.
One of the best ways to get a good quality translation is to cross-reference your results. When you have translated your English text into Portuguese, take the Portuguese text and translate it back to English. This will give you an idea of where the software is stumbling and help you to compare which of the free services available is right for you. For example, the following text was taken from a BBC news online story about a peacock escaping from Central Park Zoo in New York: "A peacock has become the latest animal to capture the imagination of New Yorkers after escaping from a city zoo. The male bird was later spotted perching on a window ledge at an apartment building in the upmarket Fifth Avenue area." It was translated into Portuguese using Google Translate, Babelfish and Babylon. The foreign translation was then translated back into English using the same programme. Here are the results. Google translated back the text perfectly. This was the result from Babelfish: "A pavão changedded the animal the most delayed to capture the imagination of the New Yorkers after the escape of a zoological garden of the city. The masculine bird age later to empoleirar itself spotted in an edge of the window in a building of apartment in the area of luxury of the Fifth Avenue." Babylon translated the first sentence perfectly, but there were a few stumbles in the second: "The male bird was later the perch maculosa on a window ledge, an apartment building in high-range Fifth Avenida." As you can see, the quality varies. So, it is worth testing out a few free services. Boa sorte!