Alright so this week I sort of disappeared? I was at a workshop/training programme on software localisation. If you don’t know what that is, it’s how we get your computer to speak to you in your native language, in our case, African.
It was great, learned some very interesting things, and met some even more interesting, fun loving, fun to be with people.
For example, who knew that Nakupenda Malaika is actually meant to be a sad song? In Ghana, we’ve ignored the Swahili and enjoyed the melody to the point of ecstasy. In face on Saturday morning, a day after the final day of the workshop, there was a church band playing it outside my house; gay and glad all the way. We do that song in high tempo and massive drums, and all the while it was a sad song!
Okay, so I found a way to put Computer in Frafra, okay? I went with Metal Hare. Why? The hare is our version of Ananse, smart, and most people think computers are smart, and my people represent the mechanical or man-made as metallic (eg. bicycle – metal horse). So the metal hare is the computer. Let’s see how I push that through :-).
And I found out from Philibert that they have naming ceremonies for gorillas in Rwanda. State ceremonies with international press coverage, and national mourning for a dead gorilla, and plenty tourist money for ecotourism based on the gorilla. Excellent!
Bantu languages use prefixes
Exact translations can be bad (the cow will piss on you – you will be blessed)
Do not translate variables: $name
Accelerators can move sensibly in your translations
Amaric looks beautiful
Use resources: dictionaries, Bibles, manuals, peoople
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