Off topic: Praise thee, TM, ye mother of all translations!
Thread poster: Vito Smolej

Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 16:00
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
Aug 4, 2008

There's an agency that sends me now and then single translation snippets to check. For instance:

Bitte geben Sie bei der Bestellung von Elektrobauteilen außerdem die folgenden Informationen an:
Bitte geben Sie bei der Bestellung von mechanischen Bauteilen außerdem die folgenden Informationen an:
Ob naročanju električnih nadomestnih delov zaradi identifikacije stroja navedite prosim poleg tega tudi naslednje podatke:
Zwei Sätzen mit ein Übersetzung. Ist es in Ordnung?


You could comment that it is close or even over the line, as it looks like that ...
a) they dont want me to translate the stuff and
b) cant pay me for proofreading,

so why bother with the mail !? If you think so, well, you have a point. But as Germans say, mitgefangen, mitgehangen. I stick with them. And anyhow, this is not the subject of the story. The story is, this agency keeps coming back with snippets that include the word oskrbovanje (by now I hate this word, believe me). It is one of the possible translations (see the vocabulary) for the German Wartung / English maintainance. Fact is it is horribly out of place, because oskrbovanje actually means something completely out of the context, namely supply. How did it get in in the first place? Dont ask me. And don't ask the "zero patient" / the originator either, he/she would not know either - he/she had NO CLUE.

I have obediently provided the correct translation of Wartung at least three times in the last four years. No change. Absolutely NO CHANGE. They just keep coming back with oskrbovanje. It's regular, like solar eclipse, like pest, like locusts... For me, it's the translational Apocalypto.

Now in earnest - dear agencies: how can I prove to you, that your TMs are in dire need of improvement (*)? How can I convince you, that by sticking you head down the cost hole you may be ignoring the paramount question of the quality of your service?

In the mean time, hail to the translation memory, mother of them all translations (good or horrible).

Sincerely yours


* Actually I have written "... that your TMs suck..." but then, why unnecessarily raise the blood sugar levels...

[Edited at 2008-08-04 20:00]


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Gerard de Noord  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:00
Member (2003)
German to Dutch
+ ...
Übersetzen laut Protokoll Aug 4, 2008

Hi Vito,

In German IT, Protokoll means both protocol (TCP/IP) and log (event log). This results in Catch-22 TUs of the worst kind. Never give up!

Regards,
Gerard


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 16:00
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
There's tons of this kind of tarpits sitting around in TMs Aug 5, 2008


In German IT, Protokoll means both protocol (TCP/IP) and log (event log). This results in Catch-22 TUs of the worst kind. Never give up!

... but where's the will to address them? If I correct again and again the same segment from the TM, and I correct it always the same way (sigh), why not go and change that holy cow of a segment in TM?


... Never give up!

Thank you! I will not.

Sysiphus.


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:00
English to German
+ ...
TM = Turd Mound. Please forgive me. Aug 5, 2008

Only acceptable if it is your own and you are willing to stick your head out for that one.

This game has cost me thousands of dollars. I am getting tired of paying up for any further idiocies of so-called "translators" and their "TMs".



[Edited at 2008-08-05 08:36]


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 16:00
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I trust my TMs alright, but that's not the point Aug 5, 2008

Only acceptable if it is your own and you are willing to stick your head out for that one. This game has cost me thousands of dollars. I am getting tired of paying up for any further idiocies of so-called "translators" and their "TMs".


A famous bank robber doing his time got a visit from a reporter and one of the first questions was:

"Can you explain to me, what makes you rob the banks?"

"H*ll, that's where the money is" was the answer.

The point is the work the agency has for me - involving the money and the - ohoh - TM. This game is profitable for me anyhow - but sometimes it's close to indecent if you know what I mean. For instance when Wartung/Maintainance is involved (sigh).


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Mark Cole  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:00
Polish to English
+ ...
Just say "nein" Aug 5, 2008

Next time they ask:

Ist es in Ordnung?

Just reply "nein". If they ask "Was ist nicht in Ordnung?", reply "die Uebersetzung", etc...
Make them work for the answer, don't just give them the translation straight off


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Agnieszka Hayward
Poland
Local time: 16:00
German to Polish
+ ...
way to go Aug 7, 2008

Mark Cole wrote:

Next time they ask:

Ist es in Ordnung?

Just reply "nein". If they ask "Was ist nicht in Ordnung?", reply "die Uebersetzung", etc...
Make them work for the answer, don't just give them the translation straight off


Brilliant!


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:00
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
When the TM is useless - here is a story Aug 7, 2008

I recently had a client that supplied a TM that was full of garbage. Incorrect and inconsistent terminology, spelling and grammar errors, you name it. They insisted on me using it, and giving them a discount.
I wrote this story to sum up the situation (sorry, if it is too long)... I just thought it may provide a little entertainment...

The Mason, the Count and the Garage

Count: Hello, Mason. Here are the plans for my new garage, can you give me a quote on it?
Mason: Yes, Sir, let me look at the plans. … I see. … You want it built of yellow brick. …. This would be about 10,000 schillings, and it would take about four weeks.
Count: That sounds good. Can you start next week?
Mason: Yes, Sir, but I have a question. It seems you wanted to put two windows on the West side of the building.
Count: Yes, I like to tinker in the garage, and I prefer natural light.
Mason: How close is the building to the property line?
Count: Uhmm… 3-4 feet maybe, let me check…. ………. 3 feet.
Mason: Well, Sir, the building code in your area prohibits windows on a wall that is closer than 6 feet to the property line. You can have small holes for ventilation, but not windows. I can put the windows on the other side, if you like, that way it should be fine.
Count: Wow, thank you very much! You see, I showed the plan to other masons, but nobody else asked this question before… You must be good…
Mason: Thank you sir. I certainly have a lot of experience, and have dealt with such issues before. See you next week.
Count: Very good. By the way, based on your experience, what is the material/labor ratio in such a project?
Mason: Well, in my own work it comes out about 75/25.
Count: I see. Thanks.
******* A WEEK LATER ********
Mason: Sir, I am ready to start.
Count: Oh, yes, thanks for coming by. You will find the bricks in the back yard, I got them delivered two days ago.
Mason: Excuse me, Sir, but what?
Count: I ordered the bricks myself, I hope you don’t mind, they are yellow bricks as we agreed. Don’t worry, I intend to pay you for the labor, which is 25%, 2500 schillings, right?
Mason: ?????
Count: You told me your material/labor ratio, I supply the material, you supply the labor, so isn’t it the same deal?
Mason: Excuse me, Sir, where did you say the bricks were?
Count: In the back yard, behind the well.
Mason: Sir, are you talking about that huge pile of debris back there?
Count: What do you mean debris? They delivered three truckloads of yellow bricks, I already paid for it.
Mason: Sir, I don’t know the circumstances, but when I order brick, I get it delivered shrink-wrapped on pallets, which we can move using a forklift. It seems that these bulk bricks were just dumped from a dumptruck in a pile… They are not in a good shape…
Count: How is that possible? I paid for them in full.
Mason: Did you check what they delivered and how they delivered it?
Count: No, I told them to take it to the back yard. On their way out they just handed me the bill and I paid for it.
Mason: Sir, many of the bricks are broken…
Count: Are you saying you cannot use these bricks?
Mason: Sir, do you want me to build your garage using broken bricks?
Count: Of course, not. I want a nice and structurally sound garage.
Mason: Sir, it is pretty risky trying to use these bricks. They have not been treated the proper way. I suggest you let me bring in my bricks which I can trust. I want to provide you with quality work.
Count: I know you do quality work, that’s why I hired you. But please understand, I already paid for it, and it wasn’t cheap… Can’t you make it do with what I have?
Mason: Sir, I don’t even know what is there. It is a huge pile, I can see the outside of it, but not the middle. How do you want me to work with these bricks?
Count: Well, can’t you just start building? You would pick up a brick from the pile and see whether you could use it… Perhaps you can fix some of them. If you don’t have enough bricks, then you can use your own.
Mason: But sir, examining a questionable brick takes time: I have to check for chips, cracks, big and small… I could try fixing the small chips with mortar, but that may incur more labor cost than using a new brick… I would need to throw away the useless ones, and replace with one of my bricks anyway. Wouldn’t it be better if you let me use my bricks so I could work in my normal way on my normal schedule? You wanted this to be done in four weeks, right?
Count: But it is very hard for me to justify paying for the bricks again. After all, they delivered yellow bricks, 3 truckloads, and that’s how many bricks are needed for this garage, right? I already paid for it once.
Mason: But Sir, I am sorry, but it seems you have paid for something that I cannot use. The quality of these bricks is different from what I normally use for my work.
Count: Can you maybe take out 100 bricks and see how many are useful? It is impossible that all of it is broken. I already paid for it.
Mason: Yes, sir, I can do that, but then what is the next step? Where is your threshold for deeming this pile debris?
Count: I dunno… 100%, maybe? Well, why don’t you examine those 100 bricks, and then we will take it from there…


[Módosítva: 2008-08-07 01:18]


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Praise thee, TM, ye mother of all translations!

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