Turkey And Google Language Tools: Feewing Wucky?

I’m happy to say that I’ve been blogged about, and partially translated, in another language for the first time! How cool is that? Well, actually, I’m not sure how cool it is. I can’t read Turkish. Theoretically, the entire post could be a great string of creative and exotic euphemisms describing how much my blog is silly rubbish and I’m a smelly monkey. Depending on how creative it was, it actually might be even better than an impartial or complementary post.

As a guy with a decent ability to scour the internet to find the information I need, I decided to take my language problem online. Immediately AltaVista’s BabelFish implementation came to mind. I’ve used it the past when I’m trying to decipher the finer points of technical pointers and problem resolutions I find from time to time on German and French language newsgroups. (Having had a small amount of training on both languages, I always try to figure out what’s being said first, before using the cheat-o-matic BabelFish.) No dice. Babel fish does not translate from, or to, Turkish.

The same holds true for another player in the translation market, WorldLingo. The offer quite a few different translations, but up to a limit of 150 words. (*cough* LAME! *cough*, *cough*) Since other online translators don’t have this limitation, I don’t see myself using them all that much in the future. But I would have used them this time, had they translated Turkish text.

And then there were odd sites like Learning Practical Turkish, that didn’t so much offer translation services, as much as erotic Turkish texts, Turkish idioms and a dictionary of “Off Color” Turkish words and phrases. Since my search for knowledge was reaching a dead end, it might as well be funny. :)

Speaking of funny, somewhere along the way, I came across a link to Google Languages Tools. Google does everything else under the sun, why not translations? And while they do seem to have a pretty comprehensive list of translations (including those not involving English as either a “from” or a “to”), I was again out of luck when it came to Turkish. So why did this page come up in my search? Well, because Google offers it’s interface in Turkish:

Turkish Google

Pretty cool, huh? But wait it gets cooler. And funnier. Here’s a few of my favorite “translated” Google interfaces:

Bork Bork Bork (The Muppet’s Swedish Chef)

Google Bork Bork Bork

Elmer Fudd

Elmer Fudd Google

And a few more…

OK, so what have I learned? Not all that much, really. Significant language and cultural barriers still exist in some areas. And I’ve found an area where all online translators can make improvements in their offerings: translate Turkish! Do it for me, so I can feel the love (or disdain) of my fellow bloggers in Turkey!

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5 Comments

  1. Ogo said,

    May 10, 2007 at 3:50 am

    This is great ! Thanks for lobbying for online Turkish translators!

    My blog article was rather positive!!! :-) I think your simple research on e-books vs books is really interesting and unfortunately it seems that publishing industry is not really keen on changing their habits. I doubt that big traders like connect of Sony would let the authors get a fairer revenue share. (Although nowadays it is easy for anyone with something to say to publish his e-book and sell it online, I am afraid things would be more or less controlled by some big houses in the following years. They would not really helping the promotion of e-readers and so on!!!)

    Anyways, thanks again for both of your articles!

    ps: I will check if there are any translators Turkish-English. there is seslisozluk.com that I like but which is only a dictionary…

  2. Brian said,

    May 10, 2007 at 10:48 am

    Hi Ogo,

    No problem, I’m always in favor of more and improved communications between nations and cultures. :) And Turkey is on the list of places I plan to visit eventually, so it would be to my benefit too. You guys have the Hagia Sophia, right? (I dig islamic architecture, and I’ve already been to the Alhambra in Spain and the Castelo dos Mouros in Portugal.)

    Yes, it seems that the book publishing industry is handling advances in technology about as well as the music industry. Kicking and screaming all the way. But I remain optimistic. (That could be a character flaw…)

    Let me know if you find that translator, I’ll be happy to update this post to include it. It would make for a nice, satisfying conclusion… right now it kind of trails off into the ridiculous. :)

  3. abarclay12 said,

    July 13, 2007 at 8:48 pm

    I can’t believe you got translated into a weird Icelandic language. Very impressive. You really haven’t hit it big until that happens.

  4. Brian said,

    July 14, 2007 at 10:25 am

    That’s exactly what I’m thinking abarclay12! I’m a regular David Hasselhoff now, except my Turkey is my Germany! I’ll be recording an album soon, and I expect it hit the top of the charts there.

    Ooga Chaka Ooga Ooga… I can’t stop this feeling…

  5. bear@tr.net said,

    June 10, 2008 at 12:01 am

    The Turkish text is just a summary of your posting comparing the prices of e-books and”real” books. However, the last sentences are the comments of the Turkish blogger: Her ne kadar Brian’ın araştırması geniş kapsamlı olmasa bile geniş kitlelerin henüz e-kitap okuyucusu almasını engelleyecek bir kaç sebebi ortaya koyduğu aşikar… Yayıncılık dünyasının da bu konuda elini oldukça ağırdan aldığını düşünüyorum. Ağaç kesmeye meraklıyız…
    TRANSLATION: “Even though Brian’s research is not large-scale, it’s obvious that it puts forward a number of reasons which will prevent the wider public from buying e-book readers. I also think that the publishing world is dragging it’s feet with regard to this issue. People seems to be fond of chopping down trees”.


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