Re: Persian translations


On Mon, Dec 01, 2003 at 08:46:41AM +0100, Karl Eichwalder wrote:
> > Anyway, I guess the Persian translators of free software (as few as they
> > are now) won't have the time to maintain two different branches.
> I don't know, but since there is a fallback mechanism built-in,
> "incomplete" branches are not that bad; quite the opposite, "incomplete"
> branches are a valid solution, too.

I don't think there would make sense to have a double translation here;
different translation for a same language only make sense when there
are differnces, I mean *sizeable* and *willing* differences.
That is the case for Brazilian portuguese, that is willing to differentiate
from European portuguese.
At a lesser extent it is also the case of US English, and UK English
(at a lesser extent in that most often people don't feel it is worth the
trouble to mantain specific translations).

But for Farsi there isn't any willing to have purposedly different
translations; the current problem is not that much a divergence in the
way to translate some terms (some proposing term "A", others term "B")
but that some say "we don't know yet, so we wait", and others say
"we don't knwo yet, so lets use a temporary term for now".

As has been said in various messages, both approachs have their good and
bad sides.

It depends also on the final goal: is it to have a usable system, yet
perfectible; or is it to have a showing case for academic purposes?
It depends also a lot on the willingness of the official world to work on
it or not, and how much; if the government gets seriously involved, providing
full support providing comprehensive lists of terms, maybe also dictionaries
to translators (either on paper or electronically), spell checker, program
testing, etc. then it is perfectly legitimate for the government to
actually demand that the translations be done following the language rules
they dictate.
However, if they are slow, and not fullu involved, then it is legitimate
I think that the translations be done separately, provided that they
are adapted when an update on official rules is published.

Think about the press: what do journalists do when reporting about
international news; do they delay the publication until they get the
official transcription of the foreign name of a remote city somewhere
or do they report the news immediately, and eventually change the way
some of the names are transcripted if an official recommendation is

I know that officials work in a very very different way, and it is quite
hard for them to understand how the development of free software works;
but if they are commited to the developement and use of the language, 
it should be possible to have agreements.
The most important think imho, is to make them know that it is not just
about translating (like you could translate a book, in a finite timespan,
and then the work is completly finished), it is about an evolutive process,
with the material to translate being in constant evolution, and with
also the ability to constantly change and improve the translation itself;
make them know that the dynamic of the process is something very important,
and breaking it could have bad consquences, like the translations being
always out of sync and outdated, or potential translators diverted and
reaching far lower levels of translation due to that.

It could help us understand a bit better too if some more background about
the linguistic legsilation in Iran would be explained here.
A lot of countries around the world legislate about the use of languages,
but those laws vary a lot.

I assume an individual don't get fined because he uses a system with
unapproved words at home;
But maybe use of such systems by the government is not possible,
or maybe there would be restrictions to selling such systems,
or maybe use in legal defined situations would not be possible (some countries
have laws on the language to use between employer and employees for
example, and the language of the system they use at works), etc.

Knowing what exactly is the problem would help understand it.


Ki a vos vye bn,
Pablo Saratxaga		PGP Key available, key ID: 0xD9B85466
[you can write me in Walloon, Spanish, French, English, Italian or Portuguese]

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