Translating a Light Novel 2

The old “Translating a Light Novel” post shows which programs I use, and setting them up. This one shows you what the machine translations spit out for me to work with.

1The top line in the image is the original Japanese, followed by the Atlas translation, then FreeTranslations, then Excite, then Honyaku. The Mecab one at the bottom shows me the Romaji which is something I have a very small chance of being able to understand…. very small. I can also hold my mouse over a character in MeCab for more in-depth info. The following examples will all be in the same order without titles.

I chose “Explorer” for this one (the chapter name.)

….and WTF Atlas…. Ferret!?!

2I turn in my key, and leave the Inn.

3I look out at the city, and then head towards the castle gate.

I’m probably wrong with the “I look out at the city”, but if I’m not sure then I just have my best guess. I’m not a translator, I could have dropped that part without losing any meaning, but I try not to drop anything. Most of the time the bit that is hard to understand cannot be dropped either, so I’ll put a mark next to it and continue on. After doing a few lines I’ll come back and have another look at it and worst case scenario I’ll write down what I personally think the line should be, even though I can’t read anything to tell me I’m right. I’ll just put down something that fits in and connect the previous sentence to the next.

4

There are still no guards at the castle gate.

5

I leave the gate and make my way towards the forest.

When you get a line like the bottom translation that makes proper sense, you have to remember to make sure that it sounds good too. It’s easy to be influenced by the words you read, but we wouldn’t use “I’m advancing to the supermarket”, so it needs to be put in your own words.

6

The Labyrinth should be just inside the forest I was told.

Can’t think of anything better than “just inside” lol.

7

I head through the field.

8

Just before entering the forest, a black wall appears to my left.

9

What’s that?

The info box here is me hovering my mouse over “are” in the MeCab line to show an example of what MeCab does.

10

As I wonder about it, a person comes out through the wall.

Well, all those were reasonably easy. It gets harder. Here’s one from a previous chapter I had some trouble with (the lowest line in the pic is what I decided to write, it was NOT one of the translations).

11

All the translations come through Translation Aggregator.

If you want to try and translate something else I don’t mind helping you start out too.

Machine Translating to give a bit back to the community.
If you want to help support/encourage me, you can add me on Patreon.
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30 Comments on "Translating a Light Novel 2"

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dd
Guest

Nice info dude, there are alot of talk about machine translations, but so little of how to do it right(or desent at least)

PhalkorUnlucky
Guest

Ferret is a legitimate translation… Kind of. Look up all the definitions for ferret and you should understand.

jorgelotr
Guest

“I look out at the city,” <- (I don't know why mecab reads it as "nochi", it usually would be "ato" in that context) "After browsing around the city" (like a mix between "sightseeing" and "window-shopping")

Haha
Guest

This is an eye opener for me on howw machine works!!! Nice post!!

thedefend
Member

exactly how i read this series. TA on the right. Raw on the left. + auto copy on firefox and google as additional translation on the TA. didn’t used atlas since i haven’t reinstalled it and cbf to do it :P. should’ve waited a bit before reading it. just finished reading ch17

Lygarx
Guest

That is the method I use when I work on the rpg maker game that I am translating. They are both hrpg so I am going to refrain from telling what they are and I got lazy for some item/armor/weapon/skill descriptions and left some of them as copy and paste from online translator. For the most part I read the romanization and try and remember what it means based off all of the anime I have watched.

Jyu
Guest

I use this sometimes when playing VN’s it can help give an idea to the text walls if u want more in depth on the storyline without having to wait for a rare english translation and relying solely on spoken japanese.

Josh Thomson
Guest

i read them both and i just have to say with the stuff you shown alot of people that have no idea how to read it can atleast understand a sentance its brill and could help more people do translations
thanks for it

thedefend
Member

btw. what version are you running the TA at? did excite stop working again for no reason?

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kondemn
Guest

“are ha nani da?” means “What exactly is that?”(Without making action like pointing objects, passive) or “What’s that”(A possesive tone which points directly the subject.).

kondemn
Guest

I know I’m being mean here but you guys should learn basic japanese writing. Pratice first you’re speaking then go next to hiragana reading. Also memorized many particles as you can, their function, roles and when to use……etc..
Atleast because you’re translating japanese web novels you should manage to read a japanese magazine barely in just three years of study.

kondemn
Guest

When you mastered hiragana, you can just use hiragana megane to make your work accurate and splendid.

kondemn
Guest
Also remember that in the japanese, The subject comes first, next is the object followed by the action. English= SVO , then Nihongo= SOV. Depending on the situation, japanese sentence goes like this. Kanji= ore, hajimete no taikenda wa. [Ore] is the subject, [hajimete] is object and [no taikenda] is the verb which is in past participle form because of the particle [no] which indicates time depending on how it is used. The ending particle [wa] is used frequently in nihongo for its function is to show expression or show reaction. Now is the real translation of it in english.… Read more »
mike jo
Guest

wanted to say thanks for info. It feels easier to read mt now

WhatIDoBest101
Guest

I would really like to start translating and helping with the slave harem project but I have a mac 🙁 Do you know any translation aggregators for mac???

KamenRiderBlackRX
Guest
KamenRiderBlackRX
Guest

by the way, i think you need 4gb of RAM to use that. and here’s another one. this looks promising. : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJ9BDLcWBbY

naleastie
Guest

Thank you for explaining how you translate! As expected, even with that method it is still hard to make a decent translation. I am currently studying japanese in university but I am far from being able to translate anything efficiently.. but it would be great if I could help you (especially since it would be great for my studies too). I’ll see what I can do with this.

yt ty
Guest

Very educational (y)

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