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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Are You My Existing Subscriber or Follower? Claim Your Gift Here 3,000 EC Credits Free!

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THIS is NOT a contest!

This is my early "Subscribers' Delight" for 2009. I give this from time to time when I see that there are significant increase in this site's subscribers, followers, traffic and many other things that I need to be thankful. The last time I did a give-away to my subscribers, that was way back when I had more or less 35 feed subscribers. At this moment, I have reached 80 of them and a good number of followers as well, not counting those who subscribed by email.

The whole point is, I do get more traffic from you guys and this post is for you all, my existing subscribers. I know that I have never promoted nor forced/bribed anyone to subscribe but they just keep coming so this is my way of saying thanks to all of you. Again, this is for existing subscribers and followers ONLY and I strongly discourage you to subscribe to this blog if you find the contents useless or irrelevant to you.

What do I have here? I think a three thousand (3000) EC credits would be enough for all of you. Of course the "early bird catches the worm" thing applies: the first 20 birds have free worms for them! This offer/gift is good until one week from it's posting date and time and you can claim your gift until then. This is of course on a first come-first serve basis.

First to claim: free 500 EC credits (total 500 EC)
Second to claim: free 300 EC credits (total 300 EC)
Third to claim: free 200 EC credits (total 200 EC)

4th - 9th claimants free 150 EC each (total 900EC)

10th- 20th claimants free 100EC each (total 1100EC)

What you need to do to get you freebies?

The official order of claiming is here in the comments section so everyone would see how many have claimed before him or her. All you need to do is indicate how you happened to discover this give-away (whether by feed subscription, email subscription or through blogger's follower update) in the comment section down AND why/how did you subscribe here.

Good luck everyone and I do hope this time this give away will be a success and will be totally given. My previous give-away, no one has claimed so better all taken this time!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Google Translate Has Become a Powerhouse... Oh Thanks for that!!!

Leaving in a country that is strictly foreign in dialect and culture, but totally allows good residence without understanding those two, is both a blessing and a curse. I don't understand if you know what I mean. Read on and you'll know how and why.

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Aside from the improved new look, the functionality and ease of use of Google Translate service are as well amazing innovations.

I work and live here in Netherlands with only a near-native (American NOT British) English (at least that's how my interviewers and TOEIC exam says) and an Italian that can make me survive (strictly survival) living with pure Italians without English. But Dutch? I am zero.. or should I say, I have 0.01 % knowledge of this language. Everytime someone tries to talk to me in Dutch, what I reply is "Ik spreek geen Nederlands", which is supposed to means "I don't speak no (without) Dutch". I live with that and it doesn't make me safe... I just spoken the language, you see? Official language and correspondence in this country is Dutch. In a way, I got lucky to work in an organization that has German, French and English as the official languages! I am crazy! I am getting lost....

What I am telling to say is, I am really in a maze. Daily, I need translations. In what way?
1. To translate French and German to English in my work.
2. To translate Dutch business offers to English-work.
3. TO translate Dutch websites when I need insurance, online shops, etc..
4. To translate and to understand...
5. To translate so that i can reply and act

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This allows search results to be in the language of choice... perfect for my situation.

In short, translation has become part of my life; NOT only work. I want to learn languages and I know I have the thing to do it as I learned my Italian without a school and with a sole stay of 8 months in Italy. I need to improve much though. But for the meantime, Google translate had been guiding my path and I am so thankful for its existence.

With the frequent use of this Google's free service, I became so familiar with it but I have to admit that it was not often flawless to use the service. Few weeks back, i was so glad to discover that the Google translate homepage user interface was changed and only today I discovered various add-ons that really made the service a powerhouse. Not only it translates now but the fields for the web url and for the text to be translated have been merged into one and that is a very user friendly innovation. Moreover, I did not notice if dictionary and translated search were in before but surely, now I have been trying them and they are of great help.

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I do wish my pocket dictionary is as flexible...

Another wonderful feature of the Google translate service is the fact that links work now and they (although it is not 100% as I tried but close enough) automatically translates to the desired language. This feature i was so sure that did not work before because i have tried it many times. This means, if the desired language is English, and one translated something that is Dutch, AND if there is a clickable internal link, the link clicked is in English when they appear.. Amazing!

Another rocking feature is the dictionary. It is customizable as well, It can be translated, same language or be explained. I just love Google translate and I am so thankful for its existence. I know there are lots of translating sites, softwares, services and stuffs, and I even used babylon before but with the continued innovation on the side of Google, I think I'd stick to it, especially that it is really helpful, useful and at this time, guaranteed user-friendly.
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