Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Perils of Translation

The Re:Vision Dallas project has generated quite a bit interest around the internet. In fact, my words have been translated into several foreign languages. And, unfortunately, in at least one case back into English.

Apparently when you translate my words first into French, and then back into English, this is what you get:

A townswoman community maturing confederation, the Central Dallas Community Development Corporation (CDC), is the screened the method developer fitted the chuck. It was precise unfolded that a chunk of people had crush their hearts and souls into this championship,’ said CDC Executive Director John Greenan. ‘The excellence of the remembrances and travail of the interest teams is astounding. ‘It was an unmixed freedom spending at intervals with the championship entries and seeing their archetypal mirage.’

From http://mon.vipublog.com/architecturecompetitions/2009/06/04/revision-dallas-competition-announces-three-winners-archicentral/.

I have no idea what it means, but it is surely profound--I've often wanted to enjoy “unmixed freedom” and see an "archetypal mirage".

Just for comparison here (I believe) is the original passage that I wrote, that spawned the version above:

A local community development organization, the Central Dallas Community Development Corporation (CDC), is the lead developer for the project. “The q uality of the thought and effort of the design teams is astounding. It was very clear that a lot of people had put their hearts and souls into this competition,” said CDC Executive Director John Greenan. “It was an absolute privilege spending time with the competition entries and seeing their creative vision.”

I’m still looking for the intermediate French version—I bet I sound even better in French!

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