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dovra' vs potra'

English translation: must/shall vs may

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Italian term or phrase:dovra' vs potra'
English translation:must/shall vs may
Entered by: Nina Cunningham
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

15:04 Sep 3, 2008
Italian to English translations [PRO]
Law/Patents - Law: Contract(s) / Technical Specifications
Italian term or phrase: dovra' vs potra'
Hello,

I'm getting tied in knots over the precise meaning of "potra' " in a document containing technical specifications for a radar system.

For example, most of the specifications in the list begin with "dovra'" (e.g. "il sistema dovra' assicurare la protezione contro..."/"il sistema dovra' essere munito di ...").

Some of the specifications, however, begin with "potra'" (e.g. "nel sistema potranno essere previste una o piu' uscite di emergenza"/"il sistema potra' prevedere la protezione dell'equipaggio da aggressivi NBC [nucleare,batteriologiche/chimiche]".

In some instances, it is apparent that "potra'" indicates the specification being optional, but it seems strange to leave something as important as protection from NBC attacks as a possible option!

Can anybody clarify this for me? Does it simply mean "the system MAY (as opposed to MUST) provide protection" or "the system MUST BE ABLE TO provide protection?

Many thanks in advance for your help.
Nina Cunningham
Italy
Local time: 08:08
must - may/can
Explanation:
In this case, I'd stick like glue to the exact translation of these two words as they appear in the source.
Selected response from:

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:08
Grading comment
Brilliant, thanks so much to you and everyone else - I was having a moment of self-doubt and you've restored my confidence! (-:
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +8must - may/can
Tom in London
5 +1must/shall as opposed to may
Ivana UK
4must/will be able to
Susanna Garcia


  

Answers


2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +8
must - may/can


Explanation:
In this case, I'd stick like glue to the exact translation of these two words as they appear in the source.

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:08
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 289
Grading comment
Brilliant, thanks so much to you and everyone else - I was having a moment of self-doubt and you've restored my confidence! (-:
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thanks very much!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Paul O'Brien: "shall" is good as well in a lot of these types of doc. yeah, it's a word developed by the brits over centuries of oppression to make it sound like you had it coming and and that they're not really imposing anything on you at all.
1 min
  -> contractually speaking "shall" means "must"....

agree  Donatella Talpo: yes I agree
1 min

agree  rossella mainardis
2 mins

agree  tradu-grace
8 mins

agree  Jenny Moussabel
19 mins

agree  Kilian Seavers: yup
28 mins

agree  Antonio Barros: Excellent, including Pauley's comment.
49 mins
  -> you mean the bit about centuries of oppression? Yes, we Irish still can't get over it :)

agree  Alison Kennedy: Because these are specs not law
1 hr
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4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
must/will be able to


Explanation:
I would stick to precisely what is in front of you here to avoid any ambiguity.

Susanna Garcia
Local time: 07:08
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Paul O'Brien: "will be able to" would be something like "sarà capace di" or "sarà in grado di".
12 mins

agree  James (Jim) Davis: I agree with this, "will be able to" is the future of can or potere in English and given the legal nature of the tran I would stick to this like "glue" as Tom says.
1 hr
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2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
must/shall as opposed to may


Explanation:
Yes, that's exactly what it means:

'must '(or 'shall') as opposed to 'may'

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 7 mins (2008-09-03 15:11:56 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Clarification:

must/shall vs may

Ivana UK
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:08
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in ItalianItalian
PRO pts in category: 155
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thanks very much Ivana - I've incorporated your "shall" into the glossary entry. Your answer was very similar to the one I chose.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Paul O'Brien: "shall" means it has to, whereas they mean it as a possible option in my view. sorry, i thought you offered shall "as opposed to" may. perhaps i misunderstood. gotcha. in fact "shall" is better than "must"in a lot of technical/legal specifications.
2 mins
  -> mmm... maybe I could have worded it better - I propsed "shall" as an alternative to "must" (dovra') and "may" as a translation of "potra'" // no problem Pauley, my use of "as opposed to" was open to misinterpretation!

agree  Jenny Moussabel: I also like the use of shall for "dovra"
24 mins
  -> yes, I rarely use 'must' in this type of document

agree  Tom in London: must we dance?
24 mins
  -> so long as we're all dancing to the same tune :)
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Changes made by editors
Sep 3, 2008 - Changes made by Nina Cunningham:
Edited KOG entry<a href="/profile/617634">Tom in London's</a> old entry - "dovra' vs potra'" » "must vs may"
Sep 3, 2008 - Changes made by Tom in London:
Created KOG entryKudoZ term » KOG term


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