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how to translate websites into Japanese?
Thread poster: Thomas Johansson

Thomas Johansson  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:36
Member (2005)
English to Swedish
+ ...
Jan 13, 2009


I am building a website and will eventually want to have it translated into Japanese.

As I am not used to working with Asian languages, I wonder if somebody could please just give me some general indications of how the process works.

Specifically, I am uncertain how to handle the conversion of the Japanese translation into a format that can be used in a HTML document (e.g. UTF-8 characters).

I assume that the Japanese translator will receive the English source text in for instance a Word or Excel file.
I also assume - but am not sure - that the translator would then write the Japanese translation immediately in a Word or Excel file (e.g. a copy of the original file).
I assume that the translation would be written using traditional Japanese characters (I think they are called hiragana, katakana, and kanji...).

But then, once I receive that file and want to adapt it for my website:
- Do I need to convert the text into some other format (e.g. UTF-8)?
- If so, what is the best or preferred or standard format to use?
- And how would I do the conversion? Are there any tools for it?

Or would you perhaps suggest any other way of organizing these things?

I would be grateful for any suggestions on these issues.



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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:36
Partial member (2004)
English to Thai
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Japanese HTML format Jan 14, 2009

Japanese is a 2-byte character language.
In translation process, you can format as JIS, Shift-JIS, UTF, UTF-8 etc.
In my experience, UTF-8 format is the most stable; no character corrupted after translation into Japanese through CAT e.g. Trados, WordFast, SDLX.
If you get source as HTM, HTML, Excel or Word files, Trados TagEditor and other CAT will automatically set Japanese language code for your final product [setttings are in Optional menu].
If you translate with MS Frontpage, expect some disaster [Frontpage destroys original HTML format tags.]
If you are unsure, translate a HTML file in a text editor e.g. Notepad, and set ISO character code in the target HTML file.
If you try translation in MS Word, be sure not to destroy HTML tags but localize into Japanese based on HTML programming language rules.
Soonthon L.

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