Contributing Editor's Note: More than 80 per cent of the
Web sites are in English, while less than half of the Internet users
worldwide have English as their mother tongue. In fact, the number of
non-English Internet users is always increasing. So it can be safely assumed
that the need of to provide multilingual Web-based services is greater than
ever. Following work is based on the report of such an effort undertaken in a
project named BabelWeb where researchers from the Netherlands, France, UK,
Italy and Portugal co-operated.
Excerpts: BabelWeb developed a three-tier structure for the
architecture of multilingual Web sites. Level one is a relational database for
the contents; level two the overall structure, in which the contents is
organised, and level three the presentation of the multilingual contents on
the users screen.
>A crucial point for the planning of multilingual Web
sites is the translation of the contents. BabelWeb compared and evaluated
translation databases, automatic translation and automatic summarisation.
Though Automatic translation and summarisation offer some advantages as
well, they deliver not yet completely satisfying translation quality and
require a high level of expertise for implementation.