Re: Arabic text in multilingual manual

Subject: Re: Arabic text in multilingual manual
From: voxwoman <voxwoman -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: Mike Sawyer <mike -at- sawyerhome -dot- net>
Date: Thu, 19 Jul 2012 19:17:09 -0400

Since the book is an electronic PDF, would it be possible to create each
language version in a separate PDF file and then bundle them in a PDF
Portfolio where the user can select the book in the appropriate language
from a landing page? That avoids all bizarre pagination issues, and lets
each user feel like the company is paying attention to their individual
needs.

In American Jewish sacred texts presented as books, the right-hand page is
typically the English translation of the Hebrew appearing on the left-hand
page. The book's pagination and binding follow normal English conventions
(bound on the left, pagination front to back).

-Wendy



On Thu, Jul 19, 2012 at 12:39 PM, Mike Sawyer <mike -at- sawyerhome -dot- net> wrote:

> This is a pretty specific question about Arabic that (I think) mostly tech
> writers would encounter, not other types of writers, so here goes...
>
>
>
> The issue: Most of my client's manuals (big or small) are translated into
> several languages, but they're not distributed individually--the several
> languages are combined into a single "book" (PDF). Arabic is usually one of
> the languages used, and the only language that is right-to-left.
>
> The questions/problems: In the case of multilingual books, where each
> language is in its own "section," what's the most common/accepted way to
> integrate Arabic? Can Arabic be placed in sections just like the other
> languages, with pagination continuing as before, or is it usually moved to
> the back so that the back cover could act as a "front cover" for the Arabic
> reader? Should it have its own pagination scheme? It gets complicated
> because the Table of Contents would, understandably, need to show all
> sections, so the reader would need to be able to easily find the correct
> page number, even in Arabic.
>
> Other thoughts: I'm reluctant to totally reverse pagination in only one
> section for fear of the browsing order of pages no longer being intuitive.
> Other than Arabic, laying out the little quick setup booklets is pretty
> straightforward; if Arabic takes more work, it takes more work, but if
> there's an acceptable easier way, or if any of you could tell me what's the
> conventional approach to such manuals, I would hugely appreciate it.
>
>
>
> A complication: in some booklets, the translated setup information comes at
> the front of the guide, followed by untranslated regulatory information at
> the back. An engineer is having me move the Arabic to the back, after the
> regulatory section, so a right-to-left reader, treating the book like a
> right-to-left book, would encounter Arabic first. The TOC looks wacky, as a
> result.
>
> Mike
>
>
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References:
Arabic text in multilingual manual: From: Mike Sawyer

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