To make them more familiar with a foreign language, students are often asked to translate into English a few pages of another culture's literature. A software package from a Hollis (N. H.) startup, Transparent Language Inc., is designed to give students more from such work than they would get by just looking up individual words.
The $99 program, also called Transparent Language, lets students scan Spanish, Latin, German, and French stories. In one area of the computer screen, or window, they see a literal English translation for the word at their cursor. Another window describes the word's root and history, while still another translates the phrase containing the word. Yet another window translates the entire sentence. As the student moves through a story, each window changes accordingly. The program, for IBM-compatible PCs, comes with four texts, including Rumpelstiltskin in Latin.