Spanglish (or Engpanish)

I’ve always had, since many years ago, my computers (and any hardware) running in English, because, when I started using computers, translations were not always very good, apart from the fact that, specially on Windows, when installing applications in English, which replaced some system libraries, you ended up with a dialog with the text in Spanish and the buttons (or anything else) in English, or viceversa. With free software, this changed, since the translations are usually included with the applications, and, for big projects like GNOME, their quality is usually quite good (it is the case for Spanish).

But proprietary software is still broken. Last night, a friend came to visit and brought “Colin McRae 2005” game for the PS2. I had played that game in the English version, while visiting my sister in London, but never had seen it in Spanish. So, with horror, I found out that translations can be very very broken. Here are some “jewels”:

  • Custom Rally -> “Rally de costumbre”. It should have said “Rally personalizado”
  • ? -> “Protector”. I don’t remember the English word, but it was for starting a race, and a “protector” is something/someone that protects you, nothing related to starting a race AFAICS :-) In fact, before selecting it, I tried to find where I could start racing.
  • Split -> “División atrás” ????
  • But the worst was the co-driver comments. It seems to be just a literal translation of the English version, which ends up in a succession of words with no sense.

Who did they pay for the translation? This reminds me of the manuals of some hardware equipment, which, when reading the localized version, are very hard to understand, with sentences with no sense.

3 thoughts on “Spanglish (or Engpanish)”

  1. Hehe, very funny (or not?)! We hungarians are in the same situation. A lot of translations probably made by persons without any deeper knowledge of hungarian language. And more terrible (or interesting) is the upcoming version of the language. We call it hunglish. A lot of us working in the world of IT at multinational companies, where the language of the work is english. But among us we are using our mother tongue, plus english words with hungarian conjugation, prefixes and postfixes. For example: “Aprúvoltam a rikvesztet”. It means: I’ve approved the request. I think this is running all over the world. I can’t decide if it is the evolution of the languages, or this will be the end of humans cultural diversity.

    Regards, Zoltan

  2. On our university students association we keep some copies of electronic device manuals that are really, really funny.

    One of them, about an CDROM reader, traslates “Tray eject button” as “Botón para eyacular la bandeja”, which translated back to english means something like “Button to cum on the tray” XDDD

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