Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tekrar hoş geldiniz!

I have just been informed by blogger-stats (beside which, the N$A pales, as regards tracking what everyone is doing everywhere in the world at any given  instant), that a couple of surfers in the great Anatolian nation  are viewing a Google-Translate rendition of our essay about the (somewhat) mathematics-related movie “Die Vermessung der Welt”.   The title of that worthy screed appears thus to our turcophone readers:

Daha Matematik Porno: "Die Vermessung der Welt"

(We trust that the attraction for these viewers was more the “Matematik” than the “Porno” part;  but allahu-a`lamu.)   Anyhow, we hope that our Turkish visitors enjoy what they found;  there’s a good chance of that, since much of Google-Translate is scary-good.   (Note, for example, that their parser did not dumbly assume that “Die” was here the English verb.)  As a linguist, that makes me nervous;  but hopefully by the time my employers announce they can dispense with my services, I shall have put aside a sufficient nest-egg to take up my retirement avocation of Hamster Fancying  without fearing the wolf at the door.  Still, one can never be too cautious, so in the meantime, please buy my books.)

What most struck me, though, was the way my blog has been baptized in the Turkish tongue:

Dr Adalet Dünya

I like it!   
Notice that here, by contrast with the case of the quoted German title (to treat the first word of which  like the English homograph, would have been absurd), the translator was faced with a judgment call.  (Granted, we’re talking about the judgment of a computer;  but with time, that will cease to be depreciative.)  Here they did translate “Justice” like the word “justice” (yielding Adalet, borrowed from the Arabic word for ‘justice’, عدالة), even though it is a surname, and hence in principle not subject to such translation.    But the name already looks so much like a nom de plume,  and so suggestive of foreign adventures like my French-undercover job as le docteur Justice, that the rendition may be said to have been faithful to the sense though not the letter.

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