In my review of Not so bad Astro's progress in the last 9 months, I find that my English language only site attracts over 1/3 of its 10000+ visitors from overseas. A full multi-lingual site is far beyond my resources. I now include direct links to automatic Google translations for additional languages on all content pages.
I'm aware of the many limitations of this amazing automatic translation technology, especially with non-european languages. It is a small step and I expect it to get better over time. I value communication with my non-English speaking visitors. Google Translate can handle any web page, but direct links make using it simple. Once in the Google Translate view, a visitor can continue to navigate the site, or switch to any of the dozens of languages Google supports. Direct links are provided via Chinese, French, German, and Spanish flags at the bottom of the page with the social and commenting links.
Overall use of the site continues to grow with over 10,000 users making 15,000 visits and viewing 30,000 pages of content in the last 9 months. About 2/3 of visitors just look at what they came for. The other 1/3 spend some time exploring the site, visiting an average of 4 pages per visit. The Google Analytics monitoring that I use doesn't count individual image views in the slide shows, so I believe that these numbers are conservative.
Beyond a personal record of my work, I believe that the experience of the universe, in which we all live, unites people world wide. Education and outreach to the public is an important part of the culture of astronomy. Astronomy inspires so many people, because it is accessible every night. This is important in an age where most science is complex and hidden from every day view. I'm thrilled to reach a world wide community. Not so bad Astro has had visitors from 115 countries in the last 9 months. I'll be watching to see if easy access to Google Translate expands that reach. Please share any funny mistranslations with me!
Content created: 2017-03-03
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