Mind the Word extension for Chrome: Learn languages as you browse the web

If you use Google Chrome as your web browser, Mind the Word is a useful extension to help you learn vocabulary in another language while you browse the web.

From the description: “In every webpage visited, it randomly translates a few words into the language that you would like to learn. By exposing you to only a few new words at a time and keeping them within context, it makes it easy for you to infer and memorize their meaning. If you need, you can hover the mouse over the translated word and the original word will be shown to you.”

Here’s my last blog post with the extension set to translate to Dutch and with the cursor hovering over meer:

Obviously it doesn’t do idioms well since it simply offers translation of single words, and you can’t really choose which words it will translate or not, but it is an easy way to make sure you integrate some language learning into your everyday internet routine.

Thanks to pagef30.com for bringing this to my attention.

  • You really can’t trust much what this extension translates.

  • Alexandrewpg

    I tried the extensions and quickly uninstalled it. The problem is that it can literally translate anything, including parts of idioms that become hard to understand even when you know all of the L2 words. It also changes the lexical category of words, so that a verb will be translated by noun. For instance, talking about a commercial acquisition, “X met la main sur” became “X 場所 la 手 sur X”. I’m not saying I expected automated translation of single words to be perfect, but this makes the extension rather useless (at least for some language combinations).

  • I’m not convinced it’s useful to learn words in this way, not only out of the grammatical context of their own language, but actually dropped into the sentence structure of another. For geeky entertainment purposes though, it looks quite fun!

  • Guy

    Too random… I tried WordWiz, which translate only basic Spanish and I think it’s better