Cross-language search: The case of Google Language Tools


  • Jiangping Chen University of North Texas
  • Yu Bao University of North Texas



Cross-language Search, Google, Machine Translation, Web Information Access


This paper presents a case study of Google Language Tools, especially its cross-language search service. Cross-language search integrates machine translation (MT) and cross-language information retrieval (CLIR) technologies and allows Web users to search and read pages written in languages different from their search terms. In addition to cross-language search, Google Language Tools provides various language support services to multilingual information access. Our study examines the functions of Google Language Tools and the performance of its cross-language search. The results and analysis show that Google Language Tools are useful for Web users. Its cross-language search service provides quality query translation while the automatic translation of result pages needs further improvement. The paper suggests that cross-language search could be used by different types of Web users. The authors also discuss the strategies and important issues with regard to implementing multilingual information access services for information systems.

Author Biographies

Jiangping Chen, University of North Texas

Assistant Professor Department of Library and Informatio Sciences

Yu Bao, University of North Texas

Yu Bao is a doctoral student in the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program at the Department of Library and Information Sciences, College of Information, Library Sciences, and Technologies in University of North Texas.




How to Cite

Chen, J., & Bao, Y. (2009). Cross-language search: The case of Google Language Tools. First Monday, 14(3).