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Debian Linux

Help Liberate the Debian Administrator's Handbook 143

First time accepted submitter buxy writes "Roland Mas and me [Raphael Hertzog] are the authors of a French Debian bestseller. We want to translate this book into English and publish it under a license compatible with the Debian Free Software Guidelines. That would be the first free and up-to-date book about Debian that can be integrated into Debian. But we need your support to make this happen. Pledge some money [toward the translation effort] and get a copy of the book once it's done! As a special bonus, you can alternatively support the project and have about 12% of the donated money given back to the Debian project."
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Help Liberate the Debian Administrator's Handbook

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 30, 2011 @08:33PM (#37573906)

    Maybe they'd prefer to have their book translated by a professional translator, so it is stylistically consistent, uses proper grammar and the content is correct. Without waiting years until a community effort reaches the same state, that is.

  • by Meshach ( 578918 ) on Friday September 30, 2011 @08:36PM (#37573922)
    This has to be a new low.
  • taaaaacoooo! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Aighearach ( 97333 ) on Friday September 30, 2011 @08:40PM (#37573946) Homepage

    How could you leave us to these monster?!?!

  • Not a bad idea. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Friday September 30, 2011 @08:42PM (#37573960) Homepage Journal
    Im waiting for someone to come up with 'cover expenses' idea. ie, like, lets say you are someone who is undertaking a free project or giving your music away for free. (like this guy [] ).

    you come up with a website, and you post your monthly expenses as they come up. and people donate. people know what they are donating to, and people actually see that they are covering your ass. and your monthly expenses and living gets covered. and you can even come up with small or big projects you want to undertake and people will fund it if they want, as much as they want.

    transparent, trustworthy, interactive, meaningful.
  • by anon mouse-cow-aard ( 443646 ) on Friday September 30, 2011 @11:26PM (#37574592) Journal
    I am a native English speaker who speaks and writes fluent French. I have no interest in helping with the translation of someone else's copywritten work. If it was available under a free documentation license, I would gladly contribute and commit to translating two chapters. It just looks like a gimmicky cash grab.
  • by cp.tar ( 871488 ) <> on Saturday October 01, 2011 @06:05AM (#37575782) Journal

    Do you have any idea how hard it can be for one translator to remain consistent throughout the translation?
    Do you have the slightest clue how difficult it would be to actually organize a group translation of such a book?
    It is a rather large book, it is highly technical and therefore sensitive to the slightest nuance, and since professional translators are very seldom also highly technically competent, the translation will require frequent consultation with the authors.
    All in all, donating money towards the translation is actually more efficient than donating an equivalent amount of your time. Because you are likely not a professional translator. Because you likely do not have the required mastery in both French and English. Because even if the work were divided up and group-translated, it would still have to be reviewed and corrected for grammar, style, and consistency. And trust me, it is often easier to simply trash the whole thing and redo it right, from scratch.

    Now, community translation projects can and do function. But they are ongoing projects, often with mistranslated and untranslated parts that keep for ages because nobody had touched or noticed them, and they are often fairly bad.
    If you’ve got a big language, such as English or German or Spanish or Chinese (i.e., a language with a large number of well-educated speakers), it’s not all that bad. But in the case of small languages, such as my native Croatian, what you get is crap. And I mean a metric fuckton of crap.
    I don’t intend to berate anyone’s work, really. But the problem is that we are a small population (a bit over 4 million), with a lousy percentage of highly educated people, of which few can afford to work for free because our economy is dead, buried, and digging deeper. I’m actually doing some corpus analyses for my thesis (that I’ve been writing, on and off, for over two years) that will help such projects immensely, but I have to get round to it. And when I finally do, I still have to beg my translator friends for a bit of their time, which is at a premium.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford