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Re: Translations...

From: Bas Mevissen <ml_at_basmevissen.nl>
Date: 2004-04-16 14:38:02 CEST

On Fri, 2004-04-16 at 13:25, Marcin Kasperski wrote:

> You mean sth like:
> Wybierz: a)bort (przerwij), c)ontinue (kontynuuj), e)dit
> (redaguj)


> ? For me it looks (in Polish) fairly horrible.

It's not nice, true. But it is one alternative I see to keep the
commands to be given exactly the same in all languages.

My main idea was to leave the short messages untranslated and just
translate the explanations. That is useful when helping people out who
use a version of SVN in a different language. For example, a message

"Subversion kon het gevraagde bestand niet vinden. Controleer de
settings die u heeft opgegeven."

is not understandable by most readers here. But this one

Subversion could not find the requested file.

Het gevraagde bestand kon niet gevonden worden. Controleer de settings
die u heeft opgegeven.

Works better. It looks fairly good to me and can be understand by both
people who don't understand Dutch (but English) and people who don't
understand English (but Dutch). Main thing is that the error message is
uniform and can for example be entered in Google to find an answer.

> > Actually, it crosses my mind that having 2 levels of
> > translation could be very handy: one where all English
> > terminology remains untranslated and one where translation is
> > added.
> The question is 'what is English terminology' - which words would
> you like to keep and which to translate.

I would say that all "computer words" remain untranslated in some
translations. In a lot of countries it is acceptable to have users learn
those words. This will not work at all in countries with a different
"character set".

> Returning to our initial sample, the words abort, continue and
> edit have well known and used translations and would look
> strange if embedded in Polish sentence.

OK, in Dutch that is quite common. I already had my doubts if that would
be usable in other languages.

> Even at the old DOS days
> Microsoft translated famous 'Abort, Retry, Ignore' to 'Przerwij,
> PonĂ³w, Zignoruj'.

Yes and then you had to press 'y' when saying "ja" in MS DOS 6.2x NL
version :-)))

> BTW: wouldn't such an idea for French translation be forbidden by
> the French law?

Don't know. But French laws are sometimes not understandable for


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Received on Fri Apr 16 14:38:46 2004

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