German translation of application names


#1

As I cannot send to the haiku-i18n-de mailing list and the cause of the problem remains unknown, I’ve decided to post my ideas on how to best translate application names into German here. If anyone who can send to that list could reference this post there, that would be very much appreciated.

Hallo,

ich bin einer derjenigen, die vor einiger Zeit im IRC die Übersetzung von Anwendungsnamen diskutiert haben und nutze Haiku auf Deutsch.

Ich denke, Namen von Anwendungsprogrammen sollten grundsätzlich nicht übersetzt werden, aus zwei Gründen:

  • Sie sind Eigennamen.
  • Das Nicht-Übersetzen von Programmnamen erleichtert die Kommunikation zwischen Nutzern, die das System mit je unterschiedlichen Spracheinstellungen benutzen. Oder andersrum: Sie zu übersetzen, würde unnötige Schwierigkeiten verursachen.

Demnach würde ich auch davon absehen, StyledEdit zu übersetzen, zumal die aktuelle Variante „Texteditor“ auch keine Übersetzung, sondern eine Programmbeschreibung darstellt.

Damit bin ich bereits bei einem Problem, das meines Erachtens Ausnahmen vom Grundsatz der Nicht-Übersetzung erfordert: Die Namen von Haiku-Programmen sind mitunter rein „deskriptiv“ bzw. „generisch“. Ein Beispiel: „MediaPlayer“ ist Haikus media player und im Allgemeinen ein Programm der Kategorie media player.

Derartige Programmnamen werden – im Gegensatz etwa zu HaikuDepot, Pe, Vision oder WebPositive – Nutzern von Übersetzungen mit ziemlicher Sicherheit vorkommen, als seien sie bei der Übersetzung vergessen worden – und das zu Recht.

Da es aber, wie sich in der Diskussion bereits herausgestellt hatte, nicht viel Aussicht auf Erfolg haben wird, die Entwickler der betreffenden Originalprogramme davon zu überzeugen, ihre Programme besser anders zu benennen (was allerdings das Problem grundsätzlich lösen würde), sollten die Namen dieser Programme ausnahmsweise übersetzt werden, etwa wie im Fall von „People“, das in der deutschen Variante „Kontakte“ heißt.

Beste Grüße
Michael


#2

Der zweite Punkt überzeugt mich nicht so sehr. Der Programmname dürfte das geringste Problem sein, die ganzen übersetzten Menüs und andere GUI Elemente sind da viel öfter das Problem.

Ein anderer Punkt spräche auch noch gegen die Übersetzung: Auf Terminal-Ebene und in Skripten, sowie in Queries etc. funktionieren nur die Dateinamen, also die englischen Namen. Dieses Thema sollte wohl am besten programmiertechnisch gelöst werden (falls das performant gelöst werden kann…). Aber das könnte Jahre dauern und wir wollen ja jetzt schon eine brauchbare Lösung.

Also, wenn ich Dich recht verstehe, bist Du für Beibehaltung der englischen Namen für Anwendungen mit Eigennamen (Poorman, StyledEdit, WebPositive), aber Übersetzung von beschreibenden Namen (Mail und alle ‘Preferences’: Mouse, Keyboard, Screen).

Wo würden wir diese Programme einordnen: Installer, DiskProbe, DiskUsage, People, DeskCalc

Ich benutze Haiku auf Englisch, und habe deshalb vielleicht nicht das richtige Gespür. Meine Meinung scheint auch hin und her zu schwingen. :slight_smile:
Momentan bin ich der Meinung wir sollten einfach alle Anwendungen un-übersetzt lassen, egal ob deren Namen beschreibend sind oder nicht. Und alle Einstellungspanels werden übersetzt.


#3

I’m commenting in English because the translation in other languages is also concerned, not only German.

I have to say I like the current status of the german translation on Haiku, apart from the “Applications”, “Desktop applets” and “Preferences” menus in Deskbar not being translated at the moment.

I think it will be pretty hard to establish exact rules what should be translated and what not. And it will most likely differ from one language to another. The best “rule” I can come up with would be “if in doubt, don’t translate it”. For example on modern Linux Systems I often have the feeling that they are over-translated, sometimes up to the point that I have to switch to English to get what something means.


#4

I’d have to also add (in English) that I agree with @BlueSky. Application names and standard elements should be standardized; StyledEdit should always be StyledEdit, for instance, to avoid confusion and make support easier.


#5

Finde das Namen von Programmen Sache der jeweiligen Entwickler ist und das diese sich bei der Namensgebung etwas gedacht haben.

I think the name of apps are the part of its developers because they have give this for a good reason?


#6

I agree with you, but if the name of the application is something creative like “Calendar”, why not have it as “Kalender” in the german translation?

Sorry, no offence to the author of “Calendar” intended :wink:


#7

Sicher. Wir reden hier aber von den Haiku Anwendungen/Einstellungen und da sind die Entwickler das kollektive “wir”. :slight_smile:


#8

´A sort of humorous (to me, anyway) irony is that the difference between (in German) Calendar, and Kalender, is that the former is the software, and the latter is the application. In the common English sense of “application”, though it has come to mean, in this context (or in this application, if you will excuse me), the software. At any rate, while it’s a semantic fine point, it’s something to think about.

What do we do, when Calendar is being distributed as Kalender, Calendário, etc., and you’re the clever person who creates new software that’s compatible with Calendar but does a much better job of scheduling recurring events? You won’t to call it Calendar, because it isn’t … but is it Kalender? To answer that, we have to know why you want to use Kalender and not Calendar - if it’s because “Kalender” is what it does, then evidently any other similar application would therefore be “Kalender” as well? But honestly, there’s no practical reason for this, is there? There’s a C on your keyboard, right? so it isn’t harder to type, and there’s no mystery at all about what Calendar means.


#9

Ja, das stimmt sicherlich. Ich hatte mich hier nur ausschließlich auf Programmnamen konzentriert.

Guter Punkt.

Grundsätzlich ja. Allerdings würde das nur wirklich Sinn haben, wenn es für alle Sprachen einheitlich geregelt wäre.

Ja, das wäre auch in Ordnung und – wie du erwähnt hast – sogar besser in puncto Terminal-Ebene.


#10

And maybe, in some cases, they didn’t do it for any particular good reasons. I’m not meaning to offend any Haiku application developers. I really appreciate their work. I was just trying to point out that using what I have called “descriptive” or “generic” application names is really not the best idea.


#11

Yeah, sure. But this is all kind of a first world problem we’re debating here, right? :wink:

I could use Haiku perfectly well if it wasn’t translated to German at all.


#12

long explanation… but on the point!

GM is General Motors as VW is Volkswagen and you can buy that car or that “Auto” or this “mobile”… The “Pistols” are the bad boys…
So my name is Bruno and not Brüno or Bruce!
…let names be names like object names and objects may become Objekte.


#13

I have been working on the translation to Portuguese (Portugal). Not having any previous criteria, or a very active group of translators to discuss it with them, I have been opting to translate the ones that are clearly translatable, where the application name has a direct correspondence in Portuguese and has a descriptive meaning (and where the author intent wasn’t probably to come up with a new fancy and unique name).

I think that there are some application names that in English are intended to make the operating system more user friendly, by adding familiarity, a sense of not being lost in a strange place. By having recognizable names, those applications can be a little more welcoming. But sometimes there are a few that can’t be easily translated without feeling weird. In those cases, it can be better to leave it in English. Ideally, IMO, the final decision in those cases should result from a discussion between native speakers on the target language, since it can be a bit subjective.


#14

I have a funny picture in my mind, i am open the applications menu and found ‘Text Editor 1’,‘Text Editor 2’… ‘Painting 1’, ‘Painting 2’…:wink: :sunglasses:

A program Name is a program Name and does not be a part of Translation.

And it is totally irrelevant if the name is stupid or part a language name like calender. If the author name it calendar, then He want that his app take this and not another name.

Interesting would be a way to get all Apps on a cathegory type a querie about it.


#15

Could use both the program name and a translated version as the full translation, if the name isn’t meaningful in the target language. Like:

StyledEdit (éditeur de texte)
StyledEdit(テキストエディタ)


#16

Actually, that makes more sense for third party applications, but for utilities that are part of the operating system, we users many times prefer them translated. Imagine using an operating system developed, let’s say, by some very smart Japanese programmers that were convinced that they had found a bunch of nice and fun Japanese names for most of the applications. Would the average English, Portuguese, German user be able to learn and distinguish between those Japanese names of applications?…

In my opinion, there is a need for balance. There can be some cases where a neologism makes sense, there are others where a simple translated name is more appropriate and more easy to grasp.

Besides, I believe that Haiku has been developed from the beginning with the assumption that system applications could be translated, it seems to be a supported feature, that the user may turn on and off as desired.


#17

Imagine using an OS like Haiku but with a Japanese base? Well, no, I couldn’t really imagine doing that, successfully. It’s an interesting question, and perhaps a serious one, but … as humdinger points out, everything is “English” - the source, the utility commands, the directories … If the names are a real, fundamental problem - as they would be for those of us who know only the Roman alphabet, in a system based on hiragana - then I doubt we’ll be able to “translate” our way out of it. But names aren’t language. “Haiku” is a Japanese word, and English via Japanese, but when you use it in a Portuguese sentence, it’s a Portuguese word - the Portuguese word for the OS. You wouldn’t, I hope, think of “translating” it to Haicai, which I understand to be Portuguese for the type of poetry.


#18

The point is, that haiku comes from europe and be in English by default, if people want to make there apps available for All who need to make it in English available too. If it has a japanese, chinies or other Name, so it is the program Name. Who will control who only translate system names? And over all i think in one or two weeks to learn haiku and his programs included the real name should not the problem.


#19

As we see, the opinions are all over the place…

To be clear, the decision what to translate and what not to translate is specific to the language. Some regions are more comfortable with English than others. What we decide for the German translation isn’t binding in any way for other languages.

Please remember, we only consider the basic Haiku apps/prefs that come with the system!

I don’t know many other operating systems targetting the desktop, but from what little I know of macOS and Windows, they seem to provide translated, descriptive system apps/prefs.
Linux distors may differ here, also because they pick and choose different apps from various source with different names.

Haiku’s preferences follow this naming nicely and translating them feels natural to me. Mouse, Keyboard, Network.
Haiku’s apps are a bit different, many use CamelCase names like DriveSetup, DiskUsage, MediaPlayer, but most of them are still descriptive and could be translated. And maybe even - brace yourselves - renamed in the original.
Why not DriveSetup -> Drivemanagement, DiskUsage -> Diskusage, DeskCalc -> Calculator ?

I think that would make the applications list look at least a bit less weird in the general users’ eyes, translated or not…


#20

I don’t see it that way at all. The majority of devs may come from Europe at this time, but “Haiku” is a thing beyond geography. Ideally, it comes in the language a user chooses at FirstBootPrompt. :slight_smile: