Traduttore = traditore

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Synoptic
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Synoptic » Wed Oct 27, 2010 4:58 pm

Silentcook wrote:Doing work knowing you'll fail, striving every time for an impossible perfection.
Reminds me of the dialogue between Szayel Aporro and Mayuri Kurotsuchi when Mayuri said something along the lines of "scientist are "cursed" people who strive for perfection but do not want/are afraid to achieve it".
Quite interesting.

Also the "bumping into one of Rin's lines and weeping" made me lol.

Quite an interesting blog post you made here, Sir.

Thank you.
"...!"

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neumanproductions
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by neumanproductions » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:28 pm

This just makes me want to appreciate all the good translators out there and even those who aren't that good. I couldn't imagine not being able to watch the subs of say, my newest favorite anime, and having to wait for the big boys/girls who get paid to do it; normally taking weeks...month...years.
This is especially important in the VN department I believe.

Enjoy the rest of your editing Silent.
Rin=Hanako>Emi>Misha>Lilly>Shizune (Misha counts in my world alright; and now she surpassed Lilly)
Fanfic series entitled... A Day in the Life of [character name here] (updated 6/8/10)
Random writings and Crossover... New stuff of Neuman (updated 5/6/11)
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Rocket Science
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Rocket Science » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:57 pm

neumanproductions wrote:This just makes me want to appreciate all the good translators out there and even those who aren't that good. I couldn't imagine not being able to watch the subs of say, my newest favorite anime, and having to wait for the big boys/girls who get paid to do it; normally taking weeks...month...years.
This is especially important in the VN department I believe.
This. You can hate on a particular translator's style all you want, but at the end of the day there wouldn't be a translation without them.

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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Wan-wanniche » Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:37 pm

I have to agree whole heartedly. The fact that I might have to wait longer than I do already to watch some of my favorite new anime would drive me bonkers in no time flat. Three cheers for all translators, good and bad! Thank you for doing what the rest of us are too lazy or unable to do. Thank you.
Rin takes an unexpected lead in the updated polls.
Surprised? a little
Is this unexpected? Have you met Rin:)?
Expect the unexpected. lol

TwilightMirage
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by TwilightMirage » Fri Oct 29, 2010 4:25 am

SirMax wrote:Regarding the speaking the target language as a natural speaker issue, I have a friend who does some anime subbing who doesn't really speak Japanese, but his job is to take translated episodes and turn them from English to natural English. Do most translation teams have someone like that? Because a lot of them time it seems like having someone like that on any translation team would really improve the final product.
Yeah, this is normal for fansubbing. It's the position known in the fansubbing world as the "editor" and it really does help out the final product. In the cases I've seen, the English of the "raw" translation can be really rough. In my case especially, I'm struggling with that balance of literalness, nuances, idioms, double meanings, and line length so much that what I type out looks like something you would find in bad fanfiction. And even then I'm never happy with it because I can still see parts of the original that I had to leave out. Editors have the advantage of not being able to see everything that's potentially lost in translation so they can focus on making the translation look like proper English and not go insane trying to shove as much of the original line into the script.

Thankfully I never had to struggle with keeping the meaning of honorifics because the groups I've translated for fell on the literal side of the scale. While I do think that they should be removed from translations as much as possible, there is often no way to keep their meaning in a translation. For example, that nuance of suddenly calling someone by a different or lack of honorific is almost impossible to replicate in English. Or at the very least, it's really Really REALLY hard.

Translation truly is an art form in my opinion. Those that can do it all have their own style. Sure it might fall under a broad header like "literal translation" or "localized translation", but everyone has their own position on where that balance should be. I don't think the typical mono-linguistic (that is so not the right word) person can really appreciate how challenging it can be. But, just like the traditional art forms like music or painting, that's not going to stop them from giving their opinion about it. Unfortunately, this being the internet, that opinion can be quite... uncivil to say the least.

I totally agree with the thought that the desire to translate is the most important part. Regardless of how egotistical it may be, it's not like you get paid for any of this. You're spending your own free time to slave away at something. I sure as heck wouldn't be doing it if I didn't WANT to be doing it. The whole lack of desire is what made me pull away from the fansubbing scene. I don't want to translate something I wouldn't watch, but translating something I want to watch makes watching it feel like work. And I'm deathly allergic to work. :( If there's anything I wish I could just shove into the heads of typical downloader of fansubs and translated works in general, it's this. I've seen way to many comments from people that make it sound like we owe them a translation and how dare we be a week (or two weeks... or a month...) behind and you BETTER RELEASE SOMETHING NOW. Few realize that translating and subbing is something we do on our own time and that we have real lives that take priority...

The comment about running into a Rin line and weeping makes me want to look at the Japanese translation and see how insane it looks on that end. :3

I kind of like it here... maybe I'll stick around...

Dampwaffle

Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Dampwaffle » Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:03 am

I had the pleasure of working on the translation of a erogame once. Since I don't speak Japanese, my role was to take the direct translation and render it into coloquial English. This was made more difficult due to the fact that I had no access to the artwork for the game nor had I played it. I often had Japanese-English dictionaries, phrase books and reference materials such as English Translated manga open all at the same time to try to work out what the intent of the original actually meant, or how such a phrase had been translated by others in the past, and then working out what an acceptable coloquial English equivalent might have been. The other difficulty was to avoid English phrases that were "hip" or "cool" at the time, but might quickly fall out of favor. A good example was a recent Star Trek novel I read where one of the characters said "Oh, I was just harshing your cool." It is just as likely for somebody in the 23rd century to use the latest idiocy... I mean latest modern hollywood catchphrase as it would for a modern celebrity to run around saying "Zounds, Sooth and Odds Bodkins!" Likewise, putting in phrases like "fat fink, cool" or "far-out" can really sink an sentence when used out of its era. Out of the entire game script there were about six sentences that were simply untranslatable, and I had to try to infer the intent by what was said before and after. And the one that still has me scratching my head were references to marshmallows when the main character kissed certain girls, inferring (I supposed) a light, dreamy state that was also a little sweet. I've since seen similar phrases in other manga and anime, but it is shorthand for a concept in Japanese that doesn't have an English equivalent. "Her kiss was as soft and sweet as marshmallows" just doesn't convey the same thing, and "Dude, her breath smelled like she'd been gargling marshmallows" completely kills the mood. In a case like that, I would provide a list of alternate suggestions for the translation team to pick from. So I can feel your pain, brother. Still, it was an experience I wouldn't mind repeating some day. I look forward to seeing your work on the rest of the game!

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Mirage_GSM
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Mirage_GSM » Fri Oct 29, 2010 9:12 am

TwilightMirage wrote:Yeah, this is normal for fansubbing. It's the position known in the fansubbing world as the "editor" and it really does help out the final product. In the cases I've seen, the English of the "raw" translation can be really rough. In my case especially, I'm struggling with that balance of literalness, nuances, idioms, double meanings, and line length so much that what I type out looks like something you would find in bad fanfiction. And even then I'm never happy with it because I can still see parts of the original that I had to leave out. Editors have the advantage of not being able to see everything that's potentially lost in translation so they can focus on making the translation look like proper English and not go insane trying to shove as much of the original line into the script.
I have to disagree on that point. Both literal and free form translations can have their merits, depending on the source material and the target audience, but making a "raw" (I interpreted that as "extremely literal") translation first and then handing the product over to an editor who then tries to turn it into legible text without access to the source material or even knowledge of the original language is almost as bad as translating via a third language.
Every text will lose something in the process of translation, be it idioms, puns or cultural references. There's no avoiding it, no matter how good the translator is. Idioms are the easiest to replace, because the target language is bound to have it's own idioms for most situations. You can in some cases compensate for lost puns by inserting your own, but cultural references will most likely be lost, because any substitutions with the target culture's language will not fit the setting in nine cases out of ten.
A "raw" translation will likely not even compensate for idioms and puns. It's like filtering out all the writing effort the original autor put into the source material and then trying to put it back together.
An editor who has to work with such a translation without access to the source material will not only have to rework the raw script, he will also have to guess the meanings behind some of the puns that will seem all but nonsensical when translated literally. And without knowledge of the source language, an editor will not be able to improve on the translation - only on grammar and punctuation.
I've worked with "raw" translations as an editor (some of which looked like they were done with babelfish), and I can attest it is more work than simply redoing the translation from scratch. Sometimes I did just that.
As I see it, it is the job of the translator to do a translation that is as close to what the finished version is supposed to be like (whether idiomatic or free-form is a matter of taste) and the editor's job is to take this translation AND the source material and correct any of the mistakes that will invariably have happened as well as put together the work of different translators, if there is a team at work.
With a big project like KS, the translators should work out some conventions to adhere to even before handing the work over to the editor.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

HeMeido
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by HeMeido » Fri Oct 29, 2010 9:21 pm

delta wrote:DUDE THAT'S COOL AND ALL BUT WHAT ABOUT HONORIFICS
THEY ARE PLEASING TO MY ERECT PHALLUS

... wait, what?

gromulke
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by gromulke » Mon Nov 01, 2010 10:58 am

Le_Shad wrote:By the way, the French translation is meh.
There's a french translation? I guess my version of act 1 is old, I only have Italian and Chinese. Is there a way to get it WITHOUT downloading act 1 again?

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Juno
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Juno » Mon Nov 01, 2010 11:54 am

Nope, you have to download the game again.

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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by RayPenbar » Mon Nov 08, 2010 10:47 pm

Good God, I don't even know where to start from. I have done translations(manga, manhwa, anime, eroge/VN) going from Japanese to English, Japanese to Korean, and finally, Korean to English, and let me tell you, there is nothing but truth to what Silentcook said. There are so many different ways to interpret the written text, just as Silentcook wrote on the blog (literal, idiomatic, or free-form), and that's not even limited to sentences. Sure you can look at the written text sentence by sentence, but then you realize at the end if you combine the sentences all together they make no sense at all or does not carry the same meaning of the original text as a paragraph, group, or etc. But that's only just the tip of the iceberg. There is also translating dialects or unique dialogs into the target language, and the difficultly of trying to translate the text so your translation give the same amount of content at the same rate as the original (because sometimes the languages have different grammar structure, so if the source text wrote "a" before "b", if you translate it to the target language you might have to write "b" before "a" as in the target language if "a" comes before "b" it might be grammatically incorrect or just don't make sense. But if you do put it "b" before "a" it might not make as much of an impact as putting "a" before "b"). Then there are those "language"/"culture" specific words/phrases as I like to put it(to which, you can never even out the bends completely). Those case are more obvious and frequent when one translates an Eastern language to a Western language, or vice versa. Good examples are honorifics, figure of speech, metaphors, and parables. I would like to go on about all the problems that can be encountered in translation, but then it would become one serious wall of text that will bore a lot of people lol.

Although I have left the translation scene (rather, ran away with my tail between my legs...), I still do translations here to there from time to time to for self improvement and helping out people I know. But now that I look back, all the grind, stress, and work that I've gone through translating(pulling out your hair at a phrase that seem wrong no matter how you translate it so you go "fuck it" and throw in the translation that seem to be the least crappy of the bunch, but coming back to it after few minutes cause it still bothers you, and repeat), I have no remorse. Instead, I sometimes get the feeling that I won't really mind getting back into it again hahaha (maybe do some scanslation on my free time?). Oh well, who knows.

"Translation" means "you're going to fail" - Silentcook
That phrase is 100% quote worthy, and very much true. I also like to think translators are stubborn to the bitter end.

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Mirage_GSM
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Mirage_GSM » Tue Nov 09, 2010 3:30 am

I'd like to add that the most difficult (and fun) part of KS to translate are not Rin's lines but the chapter titles.
Some of those cannot be translated at all; you have to come up with completely new ones.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Smoku
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Re: Traduttore = traditore

Post by Smoku » Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:17 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:I'd like to add that the most difficult (and fun) part of KS to translate are not Rin's lines but the chapter titles.
Some of those cannot be translated at all; you have to come up with completely new ones.
Jesus... I HOPE I won't get to those in my parts... whatever.

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