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eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar

English translation: (which you are likely to do) more by accident than by design

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar
English translation:(which you are likely to do) more by accident than by design
Entered by: Steffen Walter
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15:08 Aug 27, 2008
German to English translations [PRO]
Tech/Engineering - Computers: Software / Excel
German term or phrase: eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar
KONTEXT: "Wenn Sie mit der Maus auf einen der vier Ziehpunkte an einer Ecke das Objekt zeigen, wird der Mauszeiger zum diagonal ausgerichteten Doppelpfeil und Sie können das Objekt mit der Bewegung dieser Ecke stufenlos in zwei Richtungen verkleinern oder vergrößern. Diese Skalierung ist ebenfalls disproportional, es sei denn, Sie würden – eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar – mit der Maus exakt im Winkel von 45° ziehen."

Not entirely sure what the author means with this ,,eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar'' - I assume it's something like dragging the scaling to an angle of 45° would be something that would occur/be possible more by accident rather than by design, oder? Is it any clearer to anyone else?
macrettoc
Local time: 23:54
which you're more likely to do by chance/accident than by design
Explanation:
just to round out the picture

same idea as the other answers, but IMO it's important to indicate explicitly here that getting proportional scaling depends on the user moving the mouse at exactly 45 degrees, which is rather unlikely -- especially if you don't know that this is required. Maybe there's a override option (e.g. if you hold down Ctrl you get proportional scaling), but in any case this sounds like decidedly user-unfriendly design.
Selected response from:

Ken Cox
Local time: 00:54
Grading comment
Thanks, Ken, and to everyone for the great suggestions. I choose this suggestion in the end (rewording it slightly). After some research, discovered that "by accident than by design" is more frequently used in English than "by chance than by design".
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
2 +8more by chance than by design
Richard Bartholomew
4(use etc.) by accident rather than by designDavid Moore
3which you're more likely to do by chance/accident than by designKen Cox


  

Answers


11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): +8
more by chance than by design


Explanation:
This is certainly not a literal translation, but I understand what's being described in the text, and this translation captures the meaning (IMHO).


Richard Bartholomew
Germany
Local time: 00:54
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 12

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Louise Mawbey
4 mins

agree  Priya Dubey Sah
13 mins

agree  Ken Cox: perfect
26 mins

agree  Ingeborg Gowans: fits exactly
35 mins

agree  Joachim Krick
2 hrs

agree  Chris Weimar (M.A.): quasi-bilingual German agree, g'fälld ma, who is afraid of seven?
2 hrs

agree  Kay Barbara
19 hrs

agree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator)
1 day14 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

43 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
(use etc.) by accident rather than by design


Explanation:
Have a look for the complete phrase, and I think you'll find this is the common one:

Capital solution by accident rather than design | The Japan Times ...
- [ Translate this page ]
Asked whether she is surprised to find herself ruling the roost in corporate splendor on the 18th floor of the Shin-Nikko Building in Toranomon, ...
search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fl20010414a1.html

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Note added at 44 mins (2008-08-27 15:52:49 GMT)
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Which of course is what you already said...

David Moore
Local time: 00:54
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 43
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

51 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
which you're more likely to do by chance/accident than by design


Explanation:
just to round out the picture

same idea as the other answers, but IMO it's important to indicate explicitly here that getting proportional scaling depends on the user moving the mouse at exactly 45 degrees, which is rather unlikely -- especially if you don't know that this is required. Maybe there's a override option (e.g. if you hold down Ctrl you get proportional scaling), but in any case this sounds like decidedly user-unfriendly design.

Ken Cox
Local time: 00:54
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 172
Grading comment
Thanks, Ken, and to everyone for the great suggestions. I choose this suggestion in the end (rewording it slightly). After some research, discovered that "by accident than by design" is more frequently used in English than "by chance than by design".
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Changes made by editors
Sep 1, 2008 - Changes made by Steffen Walter:
Edited KOG entry<a href="/profile/112841">macrettoc's</a> old entry - "eher zufällig möglich als gezielt einsetzbar" » "(which you're likely to do) more by accident than design"


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