Help with translation from spanish to english

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Hi all!!

I am new to this group, and I need help for a translation project. I
have programmed a game in the spanish version of Inform, called "El
Archipielago" ("The Archipielagus"), and I think it deserves a
translation, for it to be known in any other places than Spain.

I've got some problems with this project:

- First of all, obviously, my english. I can traslate it but I can't be
at all sure that my translation is correct. I know how a bad
translation can lower the opinion of a player.

- Second, the game is quite large. Not as large as, say, "Mulldoon
Legacy" or "Curses" or "Ballerina", but large enough to need the Z8
version of the Z machine. The code fills 200 pages in text. I just
can't respond for the quality of a translation for such a long game.

I need people used to play/write interactive fiction, that also know
quite fluently the spanish language, and that would like to help
translate the game of other (quite a lot of work) just for the likes of
it.

YES, I KNOW. I am not offering anything pithy at all, but believe me,
THE GAME DESERVES IT. It's a very good game. I worked a whole year for
it, and I think that it really works both as a story and as a game. It
is about a very complicated period of my own life, and I used the game
to talk about those very complicated moments in a way that I thought no
other form of static fiction could do. I wrote it with my heart, and I
think it deserves to reach more people.

I just kindly ask any of the people in this group who know spanish more
or less well, to ask me for a copy of the game, and to try it out. And
see if you would be interested in working with it.

For any kind of question/remark/insult, I will be here waiting :-)

Salutes from Spain to all, and I hope to read a lot from you people!!!

Depresiv
15 answers Last reply
More about help translation spanish english
  1. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    Sophie Fruehling wrote:
    > While it seems that Depresiv's English is much better than anything
    > an automated tool will be able to produce in the foreseeable future,
    > if you want a quality translation, you need someone who knows both
    > English and Spanish very well. But then, I'm a translator by trade,
    > so I would say that, wouldn't I?

    While a good translation clearly requires fluency in both the source
    and target languages, I'm not sure both fluencies have to be provided
    by one person. Someone with fluent Spanish and good English can
    produce a draft English version which someone who is fluent in English
    and good in Spanish can correct and then they cross check to try and
    catch any remaining errors. Sure it's alot of work but I've seen too
    many translations into English which I could correct even though I know
    _none_ of the source language to suggest that it can never be done.

    Cirk R. Bejnar
  2. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "Depresiv" <pablote2es@yahoo.es> wrote in message
    news:1116519076.373515.295460@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
    > Hi all!!
    >
    > I am new to this group, and I need help for a translation project. I
    > have programmed a game in the spanish version of Inform, called "El
    > Archipielago" ("The Archipielagus"), and I think it deserves a
    > translation, for it to be known in any other places than Spain.
    >
    > I've got some problems with this project:
    >
    > - First of all, obviously, my english. I can traslate it but I can't be
    > at all sure that my translation is correct. I know how a bad
    > translation can lower the opinion of a player.
    >
    > - Second, the game is quite large. Not as large as, say, "Mulldoon
    > Legacy" or "Curses" or "Ballerina", but large enough to need the Z8
    > version of the Z machine. The code fills 200 pages in text. I just
    > can't respond for the quality of a translation for such a long game.
    >
    > I need people used to play/write interactive fiction, that also know
    > quite fluently the spanish language, and that would like to help
    > translate the game of other (quite a lot of work) just for the likes of
    > it.
    >
    I don't think you need people how are fluent in Spanish. Convert the game
    to English (possibly with an automated tool). Have people who are fluent in
    the target language help you tweak the translated version. An English
    speaker can help you correct bad English. I don't think the source language
    is important.

    REH
  3. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "REH" <bogus@nowhere.net> wrote:

    >"Depresiv" <pablote2es@yahoo.es> wrote in message
    >news:1116519076.373515.295460@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
    >> Hi all!!
    >>
    >> I am new to this group, and I need help for a translation project. I
    >> have programmed a game in the spanish version of Inform, called "El
    >> Archipielago" ("The Archipielagus"), and I think it deserves a
    >> translation, for it to be known in any other places than Spain.

    I've been playing "El Archipielago", and I agree that it is a great
    game. It also won quite a number of the Spanish equivalent of the
    XYZZY-awards for 2004. I'm only about halfway through, I think, but
    what I've seen was very well done.

    Of course, I can't help with an English translation, because I'm no
    native English speaker either. I could only do a German translation,
    which would get you an extra audience of about 20 people, I guess. ;)

    >I don't think you need people how are fluent in Spanish. Convert the game
    >to English (possibly with an automated tool). Have people who are fluent in
    >the target language help you tweak the translated version. An English
    >speaker can help you correct bad English. I don't think the source language
    >is important.

    While it seems that Depresiv's English is much better than anything
    an automated tool will be able to produce in the foreseeable future,
    if you want a quality translation, you need someone who knows both
    English and Spanish very well. But then, I'm a translator by trade,
    so I would say that, wouldn't I?

    --
    Sophie Frühling

    "El arte no viste pantalones."
    -- Rubén Darío
  4. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "Sophie Fruehling" <sfruehling@LOVELY-SPAM.aon.at> wrote in message
    news:i5lp81l10mcv8g0mbcvq7jr80nculp095h@4ax.com...
    > While it seems that Depresiv's English is much better than anything
    > an automated tool will be able to produce in the foreseeable future,
    > if you want a quality translation, you need someone who knows both
    > English and Spanish very well. But then, I'm a translator by trade,
    > so I would say that, wouldn't I?
    >
    I'm just suggesting that you can get a quality translation from a tool. But
    there are tools that will do a good enough job on the first pass. The
    author then can proof-read that and fix it up. At this point, it should be
    understandable by any English speaker to review and edit. Knowing Spanish
    at this point is not necessary and will not affect the quality of the
    English version at all.

    REH
  5. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "REH" <bogus@nowhere.net> wrote:

    >I'm just suggesting that you can get a quality translation from a tool.

    (I think you meant 'I'm not suggesting...' here.)

    >But
    >there are tools that will do a good enough job on the first pass. The
    >author then can proof-read that and fix it up.

    I think, especially with a literary text, this would be more work
    than translating it from scratch. Also, since it is an Inform game,
    it's easiest to just take the source code and translate it object by
    object.

    --
    Sophie Frühling

    "El arte no viste pantalones."
    -- Rubén Darío
  6. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    > While a good translation clearly requires fluency in both the source
    > and target languages, I'm not sure both fluencies have to be provided
    > by one person. Someone with fluent Spanish and good English can
    > produce a draft English version which someone who is fluent in
    English
    > and good in Spanish can correct and then they cross check to try and
    > catch any remaining errors. Sure it's alot of work but I've seen too
    > many translations into English which I could correct even though I
    know
    > _none_ of the source language to suggest that it can never be done.
    >
    > Cirk R. Bejnar

    Yes, I think so myself. That's what I pretended to mean in my first
    message :-) More or less the work method should be like this:

    - I produce a draft English version of a "zone" or a "chapter" of the
    game, and provide three elements --> The spanish source code, the
    "roughly translated" english source code and a compiled version of the
    english beta of the game.

    - The "translator" plays the beta and sees if there are any evident
    incongruencies. Then reads both source codes to check the quality of
    the translation.

    - After this, the "translator" sends back a "corrected" version of the
    english source code, and so on...

    The reason why I think it's important that the "translator" has at
    least a medium knowledge of spanish, is that I think a translation can
    not only be good with the correction of the "english draft".

    I will give an example. Suppose we have the following text from "Alice
    in Wonderland":

    'Mine is a long and a sad tale!' said the Mouse, turning to
    Alice, and sighing.

    'It is a long tail, certainly,' said Alice, looking down with
    wonder at the Mouse's tail, 'but why do you call it sad?'

    Suppose then someone translates it to spanish like:

    'El mío es un cuento largo y triste' dijo el Ratón,
    volviéndose hacia Alicia, suspirando.

    'Es una cola muy larga, ciertamente,' dijo Alicia, observando
    maravillada la cola del Ratón, '¿pero por que dices que es
    triste?'

    The problem for someone who checks this translation to see if it is
    correct is the following: If he has not access for the english
    original, he will read a perfectly readable translation. If he reads
    the original, he will discover that there is a fonetic simmilarity
    between "tale" and "tail" that is used to make a word game, word game
    which is not respected in the spanish translation.

    So I think a certain Spanish knowledge is necessary in a certain
    amount.

    Thanks for all, Cirk!!

    Depresiv
  7. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    I also agree with this, Sophie. I think an automatic tool could give an
    awfully bad influence to a translation.

    By the way, if you finish the game, I would be happy to read your
    opinion in my mail. And if you were not joking when you talked about a
    possible german translation... then maybe I would be VERY interested
    :-)

    Thanks a lot for your comments!

    Depresiv
  8. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    Depresiv wrote:
    > The reason why I think it's important that the "translator" has at
    > least a medium knowledge of spanish, is that I think a translation
    > can not only be good with the correction of the "english draft".
    >
    > I will give an example. Suppose we have the following text from
    > "Alice in Wonderland":
    >
    > 'Mine is a long and a sad tale!' said the Mouse, turning to
    > Alice, and sighing.
    >
    > 'It is a long tail, certainly,' said Alice, looking down with
    > wonder at the Mouse's tail, 'but why do you call it sad?'
    >
    > Suppose then someone translates it to spanish like:
    >
    > 'El mío es un cuento largo y triste' dijo el Ratón,
    > volviéndose hacia Alicia, suspirando.
    >
    > 'Es una cola muy larga, ciertamente,' dijo Alicia, observando
    > maravillada la cola del Ratón, '¿pero por que dices que es
    > triste?'
    >
    > The problem for someone who checks this translation to see if it is
    > correct is the following: If he has not access for the english
    > original, he will read a perfectly readable translation. If he reads
    > the original, he will discover that there is a fonetic simmilarity
    > between "tale" and "tail" that is used to make a word game, word game
    > which is not respected in the spanish translation.
    >
    > So I think a certain Spanish knowledge is necessary in a certain
    > amount.

    Does your game contain "word games" of this sort? If so, then you may
    be right about the sort of translator you need. If not, then others'
    suggestions may be appropriate.

    I'm a native English speaker with good Spanish. I'm very interested
    in IF and would be willing to help with your translation project.
    Unfortunately, I don't have much free time. Let me know how I can
    help.

    The other thing you should know is that I've never played any IF in
    Spanish. That could be a problem, as I wouldn't be familiar with
    Spanish-language IF conventions.
  9. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "Sophie Fruehling" <sfruehling@LOVELY-SPAM.aon.at> wrote in message
    news:0rvp815fu8s7rolfggqiu55kcuhspqr1a3@4ax.com...
    > "REH" <bogus@nowhere.net> wrote:
    >
    > >I'm just suggesting that you can get a quality translation from a tool.
    >
    > (I think you meant 'I'm not suggesting...' here.)
    Yes I did, thank you.
  10. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "Sophie Fruehling" <sfruehling@LOVELY-SPAM.aon.at> wrote in message
    news:0rvp815fu8s7rolfggqiu55kcuhspqr1a3@4ax.com...
    > I think, especially with a literary text, this would be more work
    > than translating it from scratch. Also, since it is an Inform game,
    > it's easiest to just take the source code and translate it object by
    > object.
    >
    I think that is a non-programmer's view :)

    As a software engineer, I think it would be less work and trivial to write a
    script to parse the game file, feed the text portions to a translator, and
    build a new game file with the translated text on-the-fly. Of course the
    value of that would also depend on the amount of text. And as a lazy
    person, I would rather proof-read something for errors, than to rewrite the
    whole thing. But, of course, I am not a translator so maybe for later is
    easier for someone like you.

    REH
  11. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "Depresiv" <pablote2es@yahoo.es> wrote:

    >By the way, if you finish the game, I would be happy to read your
    >opinion in my mail. And if you were not joking when you talked about a
    >possible german translation... then maybe I would be VERY interested
    >:-)

    On the contrary, we clearly need more games in German. Especially
    long ones. I'll send you mail as soon as I'm finished playing.

    Also, I just remembered that there is an IF translator's page at
    http://home.t-online.de/home/andrea_weikert/if/translators/helplist.html
    but it's from a few years ago, so it might be a little out of date.
    It lists two and a half people who'd do translations from Spanish to
    English. You might want to have a look.

    --
    Sophie Frühling

    "El arte no viste pantalones."
    -- Rubén Darío
  12. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    > I am new to this group, and I need help for a translation project. I
    > have programmed a game in the spanish version of Inform, called "El
    > Archipielago" ("The Archipielagus"), and I think it deserves a
    > translation, for it to be known in any other places than Spain.


    Surely 'El Archipielago' is one of the better adventures recently done
    in the spanish IF scene.

    Depresiv seems very shy while talking about his game, as you can see at
    'Premios Hispanos' (as Sophie said, spanish equivalent to XYZZY awards),
    El Archielago recently won 7 of 11 awards, including '2004 best IF game
    award'.

    http://www.w3jsj.com/premioshispanos/resultados.php?edicion=2004

    Don't hesitate, it worths the translation :)
  13. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    "REH" <bogus@nowhere.net> wrote:

    >
    >"Sophie Fruehling" <sfruehling@LOVELY-SPAM.aon.at> wrote in message
    >news:0rvp815fu8s7rolfggqiu55kcuhspqr1a3@4ax.com...
    >> I think, especially with a literary text, this would be more work
    >> than translating it from scratch. Also, since it is an Inform game,
    >> it's easiest to just take the source code and translate it object by
    >> object.
    >>
    >I think that is a non-programmer's view :)
    >
    >As a software engineer, I think it would be less work and trivial to write a
    >script to parse the game file, feed the text portions to a translator, and
    >build a new game file with the translated text on-the-fly. Of course the
    >value of that would also depend on the amount of text.

    Well, maybe I was expressing myself badly. What I meant was, I'd
    build it more or less like I was writing a new game, starting with
    a minimal compilable program and then adding in the objects, new
    verbs and routines little by little, while at the same time
    translating the text. So I can also see what it looks like in the game
    and test the behaviour right away. Text adventure source code, at
    least in Inform, usually contains a lot of sentence fragments, after
    all. Of course if you've got two different people doing the
    translation and the programming, things will be more complicated.

    --
    Sophie Frühling

    "El arte no viste pantalones."
    -- Rubén Darío
  14. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    Hi Nathan

    I sent you a mail some days ago with some comments about the
    translation, but since I'm not sure (due to my general unknowledgement)
    that this whole "send mail from group to particular mailbox" thing
    works, I ask it here :-)

    Did you recieve my mail?

    Thanks a lot! And sorry!

    Depresiv
  15. Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

    I have little experience with inform games translations, because the
    Dracula's remake, and I must say:

    1) For literary translation is very important to translate the sense of
    the text more than a perfect translation. It's like translate the
    "art", it's quite difficult as you see in Shattered Memory that Nick
    must did Dead Reckoning. So a only one person with full unknowledge of
    both languages is required... but... It can be done with a bad
    translation by Depresiv, later revised by english speakers... and more
    late a large process of betatest the "sense" of the art. Depresiv found
    reading the english version that one "sense" or "effect" of the art is
    missing and require a new text version of the phrase or whatever.

    2) Yeah... the translation of the source code is no a trivial problem,
    but I have pretty experience on it, so you can count with me for that,
    Depresiv. This is so important, that Nick Monfort prefer to remake all
    the game in inform 6 than only translate text and object from
    informATE! (remember the info of my interview in SPAG)

    And that's all.

    I think that we can make a good translation by ourselves with a good
    group of english speakers betatesters behind and a lot of work.

    I think that the IF translation page is a good idea but it is offline
    and is pretty useless. I think that we must revitalize this web and
    provide it with a mail group just like yahoo groups o another mailing
    list, where people could colaborate without sing a blood pact with a
    single game or spanish madman.

    See you!

    Urbatain.
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