Glossolalia Software

About Gloss

About Gloss


What is Gloss?

Gloss is an extension for Google Chrome that helps you learn foreign languages by translating phrases on the websites that you visit.

How does it work?

Every time you load up a new page or content Gloss picks certain useful vocabulary words and phrases for translation and uses Google Translate to translate them into the foreign language of your choice. The translations are then spliced into the page in red text.

What if I want to see the original text?

Gloss can be instantly disabled or enabled for specific websites or for all sites by clicking the Gloss icon in the Chrome toolbar. You can also read the original untranslated text by hovering over the translation with your mouse cursor. There’s also a snooze button for when you want to take a short break.

How should I use Gloss?

Gloss is designed to be used alongside more traditional language learning tools such as books and courses that will help you understand the trickier nuances of a foreign language's grammar and vocabulary. When used in conjunction with such tools it's a great way to learn new words and reinforce existing vocabulary.

Which languages can I learn?

Gloss currently supports over 30 languages. You can find a full list here. The word selection algorithms were designed with Spanish, French, German, Latin and Italian in mind and these are the languages that have been tested most thoroughly.

What about pronunciation?

Gloss can now use Chrome's built-in text to speech service to let you hear the pronunciation of translated phrases. Just mouse over the translated text and click the speaker icon!

How are phrases translated?

Gloss uses the Google Translate API.

Why is it called Gloss?

It's short for Glossolalia, also known as speaking in tongues.

I've seen a couple of other apps that do this sort of thing, why is this one better?

  • Gloss works on almost all web pages and updates as new content is inserted into the page

  • Gloss uses carefully-tuned grammatically aware algorithms to pick out useful phrases for translation instead of individual words. For example, when a noun appears after an article like "a" or "the" we'll include the leading article to help you learn the noun's gender. Verbs and adjectives are translated alongside the nouns they apply to, allowing you to memorize different conjugations.

  • Gloss can also be disabled for individual sites, allowing you to easily avoid translations in situations where they would be confusing.

  • Gloss let’s you hear the pronunciation of any translated word or phrase

  • Gloss translates text throughout each page you visit instead of just a few phrases at the beginning.

  • Gloss translates the same phrases each time you see the same block of text, providing spaced repetitions to reinforce learned phrases

Does it work on non-English webpages?

At this time we only support English as a starting language.

How much does it cost?

Gloss is completely free to use for all supported languages.

What's the difference between Beginner and Advanced mode?

  • Beginner mode is more likely to translate phrases with simple, common verbs such as "be", "have" and "say". Advanced mode includes higher frequencies of less common verbs.

  • Advanced mode is more likely to translate nouns and adjective + noun phrases.

Is my browsing data safe?

Gloss does not collect any personally identifying data such as your email address, payment information or Google account info. Each phrase that Gloss translates is sent to our servers for translation via HTTPS. Translated phrases are chosen to be short and consist only of very common terms and phrases so as to minimize the risk of including sensitive information. As always, if you are concerned about keeping your visit to a particular page private we recommend using Chrome’s Incognito Mode with all extensions disabled. If you’d like to view all of the data that Gloss sends to our servers you can do so by enabling Chrome developer mode, going to the extensions page and clicking the “background page” link for Gloss. For more information please consult our Privacy Policy.

This is cool!

Thanks! Please consider giving us a positive review on the Chrome App Store or liking us on Facebook to help get the word out. The Facebook page is also a good place to get updates on new features and future improvements to the app.


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