One of the most requested features on Mastodon is a built-in language translation system, where you can click on a post and it automatically translates it into your language.
If this is important to you, and if you are comfortable using Github, please give this issue a thumbs up to let the developers know that this feature is wanted:
(I thought this was already being worked on, but I cannot find any official announcements saying this.)
This is the official git repo of that translation service - https://github.com/LibreTranslate/LibreTranslate
As you can see, there are many other LibreTranslate instances like the one hosted by #fedilab, so I recommend using different instances to spread out the server load.
@apps @futureisfoss @feditips
Maybe I'm a bit spoiled by DeepL or Google but I just tried to translate an English text into German.
The result was not really what I would expect in 2022.
It reminded me a bit of Google Translate about 10 to 15 years ago.
It's good enough to get a rough understanding what the text is about. That's about it.
Maybe the quality is depending on the selected language?
I guess I'll stick to DeepL for now.
Este es el repositorio oficial de git de ese servicio de traducción: https://github.com/LibreTranslate/LibreTranslate
Como puede ver, hay muchas otras instancias de LibreTranslate como la alojada por #fedilab, por lo que recomiendo usar diferentes instancias para distribuir la carga del servidor.
@futureisfoss @feditips @email@example.com
Para aquellos que no lo saben, un cliente fediverso en Android llamado #Fedilab (@apps) ya admite traducciones como una función integrada del lado del cliente. E incluso usan su propio servicio de traducción FOSS alojado en https://translate.fedilab.app
please have a look on fedilab app.It's got the embedded translation feature offers several translation services that can be chosen by User.
@feditips Only if it doesn't use e.g. Google. I'm extremely skeeved out by the thought of people having a built-in button to violate our privacy.
Like, Vivaldi has it built in, and I think Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge do too... so... Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari are lagging behind (again).
@matt @feditips Actually! https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/firefox-translations/ [made by Mozilla]
To give some context, it must be the most common question I got asked when the big new wave of members joined: where's the translate button? It's like people just expect it to be there.
Whether or not it is more useful through a browser, people are looking for it in Mastodon itself (shrug)
Better to explain to people that it's not really a good thing to ship people's private discussions to Google. (And yeah private discussions do happen on here, followers-only scope is great.)
(Sure, we don't know all of our friends' server admins, but "trust your admins" (and assume other people can trust theirs) is one thing, "trust some random translation server operator" is another.)
Hopefully a disclaimer would explain, so people can make an informed choice.
To be honest though, no option is completely ok
If there's no translation service offered at all, some people may go back to Twitter etc and use translation services from Google, Bing etc.
It might be the least worst option for Mastodon to offer optional translation services through indie FOSS translation sites.
People use fedi to get /away/ from this sort of privacy crap.
Also, like I said, if people use outside translation services, then it's their fault. And probably way less common than if there's a built-in button to tell strangers everything.
I'm not talking about growing, I'm talking about making it easier for people to leave Twitter.
A lot of people on Twitter (and Facebook etc) don't really want to be there but they are trapped by the network effect.
If they speak a language that isn't commonly spoken on here, they will have an even tougher time coming here.
Having an optional, disclaimer-hidden translation service based on indie servers would be (IMHO) the least worst option in the circumstances.
Also bear in mind that if you post public messages (such as the replies in this thread) then what you write is already exposed to outsiders.
Even with private messages, recipients who want a translation are going to be copy pasting these into Google Translate or whatever, especially if there's no built-in translation service. There will never be a way to opt out of copy paste translation.
So... there are translation privacy problems in all circumstances :/
I am being vague because I am not a developer so I don't know how realistic it is for each Masto instance to have its own translation instance, or whether there would have to be some smaller pool of trusted translation instances.
@feditips @matt People are going to be running this on our posts on /their/ instances, so what's important is that it runs /on their instance/ so /they're/ not shipping our posts off to someone else. It's not like we have control of what their server uses.
And I would've said it's not realistic, except Firefox's extension suddenly appeared. It would still take a lot of work to make it run serverside though.
But, better /no builtin translations at all/ than any sort of third party like this.
If someone copies and pastes our posts into some service, then it's their fault. If they just click a button and give away our posts, it's Masto's. And it'd presumably be a lot more common when it's an official feature.
That's a huge downside right there.
If we'd checked a box saying "let people submit my posts to third-party translation services through the UI", that'd be one thing.
But that's not the case, it's just A Thing with no way to say "hey, no, stop that".