Thursday, January 31, 2008

Fun with Translations

Hey, I know. Let’s have some fun with Babelfish. You know, the Alta Vista translation program. It’s free, so naturally you are going to get what you pay for.

First, let’s use a couple of very familiar and famous quotations and see how they hold up:

Early to bed and early to rise, Makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.

Converted from English to German to French to Spanish and then back to English is

To the bed and to increase soon soon, to the types to a man, healthfully rich and intelligently.

Now I don’t know about you but I haven’t figured out if increasing my soon soon is bad or good.

How about one for me. Let's try

Sure VE is smart but he is also funny.

Hey, did I just call myself a smartass? Anyway, let's see what Babelfish can do with me. For this one I converted from English to Spanish to French to Greek and back to English and got

IT SEES that certain he is elegant but is having fun also

Hey, not bad. I've gone from smart to elegant. Sort of a James Bondish style. But how did they drop my name and turn me into an "IT"? A bit scary....

Here’s another fun one:

If you love something, set it free; if it comes back it's yours, if it doesn't, it never was.

Ah, so beautiful…so cliché. Let’s see what Babelfish can do with this one.

Ok, this time I went from English to Dutch to French to Greek back to French (just so nobody would be following me) to Italian and then back to English

And I get:

If conserved something, for you freed? if these last posterior parts come this last one are you, if it were not never,

You know, it would take a LOT of alcohol for me to speak like that. In fact, I think I would pass out before I ever said it. “Posterior parts”? Is that a nice way of calling me an asshole?

This is like Yoda talk on drugs! I’m beginning to see why the United Nations isn’t able to accomplish a whole lot…


Unknown said...

Did you ever watch NewsRadio? Jimmy James wrote an autobiography that did not sell in America at all so he had it translated into Japanese and it sold like mad so he had it retranslated back into English and resold in America. "'Jimmy James, Capitalist Lion Tamer" became "Jimmy James, Macho Business Donkey Wrestler".

Question: "Mr. James, what did you mean when you wrote bad clown making like super American car racers, I would make them sweat, War War?"
Mr. James: "Well, you know... it's LIKE when a clown is making like a car... racer... it's sorta... like... the FCC. The CLOWN... the clown is like the FCC... and I was opposed to the FCC at the time, right? So it was like I was declaring War. WARRRR!"

Question: "So then did the American yum yum clown monkey also represent the FCC?"
Mr. James: "Yeah, it did. Thanks a LOT!"

Question: "What did you mean when you said, "Feel my skills, donkey donkey donkey, donkey donkey?"
Mr. James: *Sigh*

Another post for your wall of fame.

Memarie Lane said...

What is that stuff in your picture of the day? Some kind of freak boiled egg?

Serena said...

I've gotten into more trouble with those so-called language translators. LOL. There are those in certain countries who I'm quite sure are convinced I'm retarded.:)

I can't quit laughing at Kan's story. I think I may have just wet my pants a little.:-)

Uncivil said...

Can you translate that into Elmer Fudd?

Kurt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kurt said...

Mark Twain did the same thing.

Anonymous said...

Bwaaaaaa haaaaa haaaaaaaaa.

That really tickled me.

But I am insane. My kids tell me all the time.

So just ignore the crazy lady in the corner translating EVERYTHING she hears for her own, and the voices, entertainment....

Thanks for the new obsession.

Ed said...

kan - Hah...perfect; I never heard of that.

marie - I am afraid that is some sort of fake egg product from Japan. I don't want to know any more than that though

sj - Yes, easy and convenient to use Babelfish...if you want to come off like a retard that is

uncivil - Yeah, forgot about all the other translators and generators. I could have converted this into management speak too

kurt - Wow, really? He must really be old now...I didn't know he was still alive ;)

kelley - It's addicting fun for the mental imbalanced (us). I didn't see an English-Australian translation though. You're going to have to do the definitive work on that one. Trolleys as shopping carts....sheeez!

Camille Alexa said...

This is one of my favorite VE posts EVER.

Ed said...

camille - Why thank you. This is what happens when it rains all the much time on VE's hands...