Kirk Evans Blog

.NET From a Markup Perspective

Translate Spanish to English… In Microsoft Word?

Today was the first time I realized there is a translation service in Microsoft Office Word 2003.  And now I realize that the Research Pane is what makes Office 2003 (especially with SharePoint) so very cool.

I was cleaning out old posts from SharpReader today, mostly from newly added URLs.  I saw this post from Mauricio Feijo where he laments about a referenced post not being available in English. 

I have seen Dev Bala (here is one of my favorite Dev posts without Hooters chicks in it) talk about the Research Pane in Office 2003 before, and thought I remembered him mentioning translation services.  When Word loaded up, I copied and pasted the blog entry into a Word document, chose Tools / Language / Translate, and the roughly translated text popped up in the research pane.  What’s even cooler is that it guessed that I wanted to translate from Spanish to English.

In the translation provided, it replaced the references to “VS.NET” as “VERSUS .NET”.  I replaced the instances of “VS.NET” with “Visual Studio .NET”, but Word left the capitalization in and made it “VISUAL STUDIO .NET”.  I thought… I bet Word can fix this, too.  I searched Word Help in the research pane for “proper case”, and it told me to click Format / Change Case, and then I selected the “Title Case” option. 

I had tinkered with the Information Bridge Framework demos before, and never really looked into what is behind Smart Tags.  But now I think I finally see that there are some incredibly slick solutions that can be created using Word as a client.

The research pane is just freaking cool.