Fun with Japan CD-4s and Google Translate App

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sjcorne

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This might be old news, but I just found out that the Google Translate app will work in conjunction with your smartphone camera and almost instantly translate text off of pictures or objects.

Naturally, I pulled out some of my Japan CD-4 LPs to see what the OBI strips and liner notes actually say, hoping maybe there'd be some info about unreleased titles or stuff like that. It doesn't work perfectly, but overall you get the idea and it’s interesting (and often funny) to see what it does.

Here's the OBI strip from Quincy Jones' Body Heat (King 4D-10) - the text on the back has some interesting instructions about setting up your system caring for CD-4 vinyl.

QJ_BH_OBI_Front.jpg


QJ_BH_OBI_Back_1.jpg
QJ_BH_OBI_Back_2.jpg


The description of the title song on The Guess Who's American Woman cracked me up, as did the lyrics to "Yesterday Once More" on The Carpenters' The Singles.

GH_AM_Liners.jpg


C_Singles_Lyrics.jpg


If you've got a lot of Japanese vinyl in your collection, it's worth downloading the app (it's free) and taking a look :)
 

Circular Vibes

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I use the Google Translate app on my Android phone with mixed results. I find that a steady hand is best. Just a slight shift in position will yield differing results. It doesn't work well on hand written notes though. While my results have left me guessing and wondering, your results are effing hilarious! My best results have been from snapping a pic and scan that in the app rather than live. My hand isn't terribly steady with cameras. I wonder if there is an app for Windoze PCs. That way I could send Japanese manuals and LP inserts into the computer and cut down on errors.
 

britmarc

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Japanese grammar is different to English grammar and it also tends to use honorifics so often there are two types of translation - Literal and direct which can be quite different. I met this several years ago
when a businessman did a direct translation and I was totally confused by what he was trying to say, and then my Japanese manager read it and started laughing and told me that he had translated directly. Also Japanese have no 'th' sound and 'l/r', 'b/v' sounds distinction - So from Japanese a translation could read 'I rub you' or 'I love you' ; 'I pray with my children' or 'I play with my children'. Some are more obvious:- 'I swim in the river' / 'I swim in the liver'.....
 

Sonik Wiz

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This might be old news, but I just found out that the Google Translate app will work in conjunction with your smartphone camera and almost instantly translate text off of pictures or objects.

Naturally, I pulled out some of my Japan CD-4 LPs to see what the OBI strips and liner notes actually say, hoping maybe there'd be some info about unreleased titles or stuff like that. It doesn't work perfectly, but overall you get the idea and it’s interesting (and often funny) to see what it does.

Here's the OBI strip from Quincy Jones' Body Heat (King 4D-10) - the text on the back has some interesting instructions about setting up your system caring for CD-4 vinyl.

View attachment 50740

View attachment 50741 View attachment 50737

The description of the title song on The Guess Who's American Woman cracked me up, as did the lyrics to "Yesterday Once More" on The Carpenters' The Singles.

View attachment 50735

View attachment 50734

If you've got a lot of Japanese vinyl in your collection, it's worth downloading the app (it's free) and taking a look :)

You've got some great examples there! As a collector of J pop & rock I've run into the same thing often with hilarious results. A friend of mine visited Japan for 2 weeks knowing almost zero of the language & somehow managed to survive using Google transalte exclusively. And there is a long standing tradition of fan-subbing anime before it's released in the West. It's amazing that the results are so good because as britmarc said it's more about interppreting than translating.

I get the idea the Japanese must use Google translate as well:
 
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