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KudoZ questions: proposal for a "mini-survey" type of question
Thread poster: xxxElena Sgarbo
xxxElena Sgarbo  Identity Verified
Italian to English
+ ...
Jan 20, 2004

It often happens to many of us that we need, for a particular term, as many variants as possible of the term in another language, or within a language.

For example, a couple of years ago I needed, for a children's book, names of fruits starting with a "d". Recently, someone wanted to know all the possible abbreviations for "telephone" in different Spanish-speaking countries.

These are only a couple of examples, but over the years in ProZ there have been many instances of legitimate requests for a range of answers. This type of "mini-survey" question, I believe, is not ideal for the Forums (where answers may take time to arrive and be lost within other comments) but rather for the KudoZ section.

The current KudoZ system does allow for "mini-surveys" -but only within the "regular questions" format. The problem IMHO is that once the answers are in, the Asker has no way of fairly awarding KudoZ points. All or most answers are correct, well documented, and have often taken the Answerers quite a bit of research to provide them.

This restriction to selecting only ONE answer will leave not only several Answerers without their well deserved KudoZ, but will also leave pertinent, excellent answers out of the glossaries.

So I wonder: within the KudoZ system, could there be a new category of questions, the "mini-survey"? (as opposed to regular questions).

This way, at the time of posting a question the Asker could select the "mini-survey question" option; the "regular question" option could be the default.

For the mini-survey type of question, perhaps the KudoZ points could be divided. Or perhaps mini-surveys would need a different grading system...

Any opinions?
Thanks,

Elena

[Edited at 2005-06-13 02:05]


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Graciela Carlyle  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:32
English to Spanish
+ ...
Agree Jan 20, 2004

And an idea for the points would be that the Asker could accept as many answers as appropriate and X points be awarded to all the answers accepted.
It would be very useful indeed!!

Cheers,
Grace.


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Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 19:32
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
It's a good idea Jan 20, 2004

Iwas the asker for the telephone question
In fact I didn't imagine, when I asked, that there were so many ways to abbreviate it. I don't know if I'd have used the mini-survey format if it existed.

But it often happens with different versions of Spanish too...
I remember the translation of passion fruit, I think it had eight translations depending on the countries.
This would take us to a way of sharing points. Another solution would be not to award points to those questions...

Interesting, let's think how it could exist.


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Will Matter  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:32
English
+ ...
good idea Jan 26, 2004

This is a very good idea, i'm all for it. After all, points (and all other issues) aside, we are supposed to A)be professionals and B)help each other. This format would help the asker by providing a broader range of responses, help the answer(ers) by keeping the focus on the answer itself (rather than who is "right" vs who is "wrong") and would give members more options when searching the glossaries for terms. After all, as Claudia pointed out, there is very frequently more than one term for basic things that everyone knows (but uses a different name for) and this tends to vary from country to country so a glossary that shows all of the regional or dialectical variants can be very, very useful and informative.

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Endre Both  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:32
Member (2002)
English to German
Great idea Jan 26, 2004

...although I would consider awarding one point to every contributor (unless his or her answer is declined by the asker).

I would also allow askers to modify the type of a question after asking it.

Endre


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xxxElena Sgarbo  Identity Verified
Italian to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Graciela, Claudia, willmater, Endre Jan 28, 2004

Graciela Carlyle wrote:
And an idea for the points would be that the Asker could accept as many answers as appropriate and X points be awarded to all the answers accepted.
Yes, why not?

Claudia Iglesias wrote:
I remember the translation of passion fruit, I think it had eight translations depending on the countries.
Happens very often when the same language is spoken in several countries -or in several regions within a country!! Example: I was born in Argentina less than 200 miles from Buenos Aires, in Rosario. When I was a girl we'd go out for an afternoon snack in a coffee shop, and I would order a "remo" ("oar", a cup of warm milk with a chocolate bar inside, which melts slowly). In BA, if I wanted the same thing, I had to order a .... "submarino" ("submarine"). Easy to guess.

willmatter wrote:
This format would help the asker by providing a broader range of responses, help the answer(ers) by keeping the focus on the answer itself (rather than who is "right" vs who is "wrong") and would give members more options when searching the glossaries for terms. ... a glossary that shows all of the regional or dialectical variants can be very, very useful and informative.
Yes! Being able to enter several variants of a term or expression in the glossaries would be the main asset of the mini-survey, IMO.

Endre Both wrote:
... I would also allow askers to modify the type of a question after asking it.
This would give the Asker the option of "converting" the question type retrospectively -a handy resource when the Asker is unaware beforehand that there is a whole range of possible answers to his/her question.

Thanks for each of your thoughtful contributions! Looks like we are ready to have the mini-survey category of questions.

AND we understand how extremely busy Henry and Jason and everyone else is here at ProZ, but...

Thanks
Elena

[Edited at 2004-01-28 03:44]


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Susana Galilea  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:32
English to Spanish
+ ...
one more vote in favor May 6, 2004

Dear all,

I thought I would refloat this thread, since I personally often need to address the broadest possible Spanish-speaking audience, and find myself posting monolingual questions to compare one term versus another.

I would go as far as suggesting this might belong in a new Forum category, rather than in the Kudoz section. Any fresh ideas will be much appreciated.

Cheers,

Susana Galilea
Accredited Translator EUTI
sgalilea@ispwest.com
www.accentonspanish.com


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Sol  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:32
Spanish to English
+ ...
I like the idea May 6, 2004

I was thinking how this could work, and I think there should be fields to enter a term, and where the answerers know for sure it is used. People should be allowed to enter new places for terms already entered, or to confirm a term is used in a specific area, or to disagree. I think points could be awarded, for example, at one per term/zone combination as long as someone agrees with it, that way you avoid people guessing to get points, while encouraging them to participate.

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Kirill Semenov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 00:32
Member (2004)
English to Russian
+ ...
I like the idea too May 6, 2004

Especially now, when following this thread about "rhinocerous":

http://www.proz.com/topic/17556

In fact, I can remember a couple of questions in Eng->Rus pair which where obviously more a survey than just a kudoZ question, because the main question was how a word or expression *feels* when translated.

Another (less popular) example is to translate "I love you" in 50+ languages.

But I do not think that such questions have to be graded with points. Either you want to participate in a "survey" or not, that's all.
Forum or kudoZ form is equally ok, as for me.


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Patricia Posadas  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:32
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Great idea! Jun 4, 2004

Let's hope something can be done about this!

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Cristóbal del Río Faura  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 23:32
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes, please! Jun 4, 2004

I was referred to this thread after posting a question -and getting very useful answers by the way- in the Spanish forum about different ways of saying one thing in Latin America and Spain.

Elenas's proposed mini-survey feature would be an ideal tool for that type of questions.

Above all, this would be a kind of language enriching place for anyone looking at or participating in it -like Proz.com in general, of course- so getting points or not would seem irrelevant.

Format could be compact for the sake of speed, clarity and precision, but might include some kind of "extension" option to make room for further comments or discussion about the terms in question as needed.

Regards,
Cristobal


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xxxElena Sgarbo  Identity Verified
Italian to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
When one needs a phrase in many languages Jun 17, 2004

When someone needs a phrase translated into several languages (like Tony did yesterday: http://www.proz.com/kudoz/740072), it would be great to be able to submit the question to many languages at once. This could be another terrific feature of the mini-survey querying!

Elena


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George Rabel  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:32
English to Spanish
+ ...
Great Ideas! Jul 16, 2004

Not being able to award points to more than one answer is rather frustrating. Sometimes one receives the exact answer by 2 different people and at the exact time.

Other times, none of the suggestions offered totally satisfies what one is looking for, but all are useful and informative.

Also, I have felt many times that it would be good to add a MANDATORY field for the KudoZ questions, specifying the TARGET COUNTRY, if known, and if it is not known, then "not known".

Such a mandatory field will force askers to provide more information and will give answerers the opportunity to give better informed suggestions.


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xxxtnkw
Local time: 22:32
Spanish to English
+ ...
Superb idea Jul 27, 2004

I have nothing to add to the wisdom already penned on this subject.

Kind wishes to all.

Nicholas (tnkw)


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moken  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:32
English to Spanish
+ ...
Elena, this is an excellent idea! Aug 11, 2004

Just read this string, like others, off the back of a Kudoz question. Researching a term as simple as "polo shirt", I stumbled across a page where I found it HAD been surveyed and found to have over 30 different translations across Spanish speaking countries!

The page had also surveyed a number of other words for their usage in different Spanish speaking countries. At first the tables aren't that easy to read, but once you get the jist, they're real eye openers. It could be a base idea to start working on a mini-survey question. If you'd like to see how they work, you'll find them here:
http://gamp.c.u-tokyo.ac.jp/~ueda/varilex/dis/vg-ds1.htm#[B072]

Other than this, yes we may all agree that the main object in Kudoz is to give and find help but, like it or not, I think a large number of "players" do get a kick out of the points, to the extent that at times they might even seem counterproductive. However, if points wwere taken out of Kudoz, what would the outcome be as far as nº of player/helpers is concerned?

I have often wondered why there isn't a maximum points (why not 4, like now?) which can be allocated but shared as one may like between answers (1-1-1-1; 3-1; 2-2... etc.)

This would certainly work fine for a "mini-survey".

Finally, I fully agree with George: a mandatory "Target Country" field would be helpful both to the asker and the answerer.

Sonrisas,

Álvaro ))


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