Archive for April, 2006

Google adds Arabic translation

April 30th, 2006
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Google ArabicGoogle Research has released a new system of machine translation based on statistical analysis of text. They explain what that means in layman terms on their blog as…

“…we feed the computer with billions of words of text, both monolingual text in the target language, and aligned text consisting of examples of human translations between the languages. We then apply statistical learning techniques to build a translation model.”

The system is in beta like almost all of their offerings and just went live. You can find the beta site here.
Time to have some fun practicing Arabic 🙂


Qibla Locator now with address search!

April 27th, 2006
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With the new Google Maps API v2 released, I decided to update the Google Maps Qibla Locator with quite a few exciting new features. First and foremost is the ability to search by address using AJAX! This is possible thanks to the Yahoo! Geocode API. You can not only search by address but also by zipcode, city, state or even just country (address and zipcode work only in the US). Different search queries provide different zoom levels. The more precise the query, the more zoomed in the view will be. This is usefull as it can speed up the process in locating a place.

Also added is the distance to the Qibla. As noted in the API documention, this distance could be off by as much as 0.3% but is still a good estimation.

Another little feature that was added has to do with the UI/usability. You will note that the map controls only appear when the mouse is on the map and they disappear when it is not. This enables the user to have a full unobstructive view of the map.

New in Beta 0.87:

  • Updated to Google maps APIv2.
  • Replaced Overview Pane with official collapsible version.
  • Added Yahoo! geocoding.
  • Added distance to Mecca.
  • Added mouseover map controls.
  • Added zoom level indicator.


Dua by Mishary Rashid El-Efasy

April 21st, 2006

A beautiful dua I found on google video by Mishary Rashid El-Efasy.


Writely Invitations

April 21st, 2006

WritelyYesterday I got my invitation for writely. It was’nt as bad getting one as I thought it would be. After posting on a couple of blogs here and there, two very generous bloggers emailed me and offered me the invites. I took one from the first one and thanked the second for his kind offer. So to do the least, I decided to give away some of my invites too. Here’s what i’m going to do. To get an invite, leave a comment stating where you’re from and what you do for a living.