Re: Writing for Translation

Subject: Re: Writing for Translation
From: Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 06 Aug 2009 10:56:23 -0400

Nancy Allison wrote:
> What do you mean, "Usability doesn't change much with the language"?

Gene's not precisely correct here. A bad translation can ruin otherwise
good usability. See for latest examples.

But for technical material there is usually little linguistic or
cultural distinction between the requirements for speakers of one
language or another. Clarity of expression and making sure that terms
are explained or known before putting them to use are principles that
cross cultures. Granted, certain cultures regard negative or forthright
statements as rude. But I wonder about the appropriateness of rendering
"Do not open cover while power is on," more politely as, "Thank you for
remembering that some people might experience danger from power behind

An especially good loss of usability appears as "Relevant Crazy Warning"
near the bottom of - I think they might
be warning of an epilepsy hazard.

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Re: Writing for Translation: From: Nancy Allison

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