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Some news about the translation system!


The collaborative translation system has been with BGA almost from the start to allow as many people as possible throughout the world to play together with no language barrier. We are quite happy and proud about it, but of course it's not perfect.

With more than 150 games - and translations happening in 35 languages - we tried to see what we could fix or do better.

1) With so many translations, fixing mistakes in validated translations has become tedious. Doing it manually when reported by players in the forums was slow and time consuming. So we decided to trust the community some more, and to allow players to fix validated strings directly if they have enough experience on BGA and on the game. Please be aware that fixing validated translations doesn't award any gift points, and should be done only to correct clear and obvious mistakes. It's best not to make changes you are not sure of, and always stay as close as possible to the original English text in meaning and style.

2) For some languages there is not a lot of translators and we wanted to try to make things easier, so we thought that it would be faster for translators to proofread and correct than to translate everything. So when possible (which means when there is no substitution parameter involved making the text dynamic), we will now propose a computer generated translation by default, and then translators will be able to either make changes to improve it as usual, or just to confirm it in one click if it's already good! These default translations will appear progressively in the weeks to come, and this new functionnality should allow us in the future to open the website in more languages for which we don't currently have enough players to bootstrap a translation, and maybe spark interest for players in these languages.

Let's be clear, this is absolutely not meant to replace the current community based translation system! We really need the translators help in translating dynamic strings and in proofreading the translations to have them meet the "human quality" level that creates a smooth and natural play experience.

3) Even with good intentions, some mistakes were made by translators making changes to the original English text. And that was really a bummer, because mistakes propagate to all languages afterwards... So for English, we decided to set up a validation step to avoid mistakes. If you spot something incorrect in the English version of the website or in an English text you are currently translating, you can look for that text in the "from English to English" translation system, and propose a change (with a comment!). This change will then be validated (or refused) by the BGA team.

4) Since we didn't think about setting up specific guidelines about punctuation, some translators added or removed final punctuation a little anarchically over the years, for example adding an ending dot for text used in buttons (Yikes! :o ). We homogenized that to get back to the intention of the developer in terms of meaning expressed through punctuation and clarity of the interface (a website is not a book). Now we also trigger a warning if the final punctuation is changed: translators reported some cases where it can be legitimate, so it can still be done, but please be careful with this, it should stay exceptional!

Thanks again to all translators from the community contributing their time to allow players from all over the world to enjoy playing board games in their native language!

Really. That's awesome! :D
03/27/2019 18 comments

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