2011/3/1 火曜日

入試問題不正〜この答えですぐばれる

Filed under: life in Japan,学校,日本語,翻訳業,英語一般 — admin @ 7:55:07

京都大学の入試問題が試験中にYahooの知恵袋にでたことで世間が騒いでいるが、すぐばれるはず。意味の合った答えなら仕方がないが、この答えは間違っているだけではなく、Google翻訳機能の結果とほぼ一致。受験中の機械翻訳はありえない。

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ちなみに、英作文に「正しい」1つの答えが滅多にない。2人の受験生がぴったり同じ答えをだせば、あやしい。

カンニング術に時間をかかないで、英文に時間をかけましょう。

2011/2/19 土曜日

出版社のアプリ〜 eブックの挑戦

Filed under: books,cyberspace,life in Japan,日本語, — admin @ 14:54:36

電子本元年の動き。

日本の出版社はアマゾンみたいな電子ブックストアを利用よりも、各自で電子本を売ることにしています。しかし、読みたい本の出版社はどれだかわからないと電子本が買えないのが(1つの)懸念です。

アマゾン等で出版社を調べて、それから出版社のサイトで電子本があるかどうかを見ないと手に入れないでしょう。

学研がスマートフォンやタブレットパソコンのためのアプリを作ったので、とりあえずその様子を見ることにしました。アプリはダウンロードしやすいけれど、本は限られています。ちなみに、著者名や本題名の検索機能はないので、ジャンルごとで全部本を見てみないと何があるかわかりません。

始まったばかり、日本のeブック市場です。これからの改善を期待しています。

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2011/2/18 金曜日

草なぎ、翻訳仲間入り

Filed under: books,life in Japan,日本語,,翻訳業 — admin @ 7:53:33

SMAPの草薙剛が韓国のベストセラーを翻訳し、日本で発売しました。

草薙ってどんな文章を書くでしょうか。興味津々。

水島ひろの本のように、きっとこの本、『月の街、山の街』がたくさん売れるでしょう。

人気アイドルの翻訳は成功するけれど、なぜか翻訳家は人気アイドルには滅多になりません。

2011/2/8 火曜日

Redefining “mottainai” in the new century

Filed under: English entries,life in Japan — admin @ 9:21:33

When I hear someone mumble “mottainai,” I tense up. I’ve got mottainai PTSD. I moved to Japan when the generation that grew up during the war was still in charge, the mottainai missionaries. Translated strictly, “mottainai” means “what a waste.” But it is usually used to mean “Are you out of your cotton-pickin’ mind? How could you even think of throwing that out?”

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In the name of mottainai, most gifts received during the Age of Obligatory Gift Giving (roughly 1970-1995) were put in closets–until the closets were jampacked, after which they were stacked against walls, and then against other piles… you get the picture. Schools and churches dipped into stocks of stuff to hold bazaars. Crowds showed up to buy the stuff. You might call it a rearranging of the gifts–people with too many bottles of soy sauce could bring them in and purchase boxes of soap for a low price. And so on. But people without connections to bazaars were left with rooms of stuff, all much too mottainai to give up. All much too old to be of use after about 20 years.

bazaars

Nowadays, though you have to buy your own stuff to keep and not be mottainai. Housewives  buy food for any contingency–especially when on sale. 20 carrots for the price of 3? Why not! Vegetables can conveniently be left for up to a month to re-color in the refrigerator. But woe the person tasked with cleaning it out to make room for new food. And for goodness sake, don’t cut off anymore of those aging carrot tops than is green. A millimeter of orange will have the mottainai police at your door.

I’d like to declare the new century (somewhat belatedly) The Post-mottainai Era. The motto of the post-mottainai generation should be “Don’t buy it in the first place! Don’t take it home even if they’re giving it away!” Instead of chiding people who dispose of the used up and unneeded, stand behind people in line at the cash register, and seethe “mottainai” when a purchase looks unnecessary or excessive to you (use your own standards, don’t be shy). Go up behind the purchaser and ask in a sincere tone, “Are you really going to use all of that? Do you have room for that at home? Shall I carry it back to the shelves for you?”

Don’t worry, no one will consider you a busybody. And you won’t hurt anyone’s feelings because any admonishment is acceptable–it always has been–as long as it is preceded by a low growl of “mottainai!”

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2011/1/10 月曜日

地域翻訳事務所  neighborhood translations

Filed under: life in Gunma,life in Japan,日本語,翻訳業 — admin @ 10:59:43

最近、近場の翻訳依頼や英語関連相談が多くなりました。以前からの大手クライエントに加えて、開業医(診断書、処方箋の英訳)、中小企業(商品カタログ英訳)、国内大学国際科受験生(英語で記入する申し込みのお手伝い)、海外で長期滞在をめざす個人(ビザや留学のための書類審査の相談)、それに素朴な質問(海外からの書類が読めない。これはサギではないでしょうか)の頼み等が続々あります。

日本人が海外にでることが少なくなったとよく聞きますが、それでも行きたい人のサポートは必要です。また、日本人の動向にかかわらず、国際社会が日本に進出し続けるでしょう。とにかく、どんなに小さい相談でも遠慮なく南向き翻訳事務所にご連絡下さい。

(注意:英語宿題代行サービスはお断りします)

no homework!

2011/1/8 土曜日

The best iPhone is an old iPhone

Filed under: English entries,life in Japan, — admin @ 9:23:27

Women hit their peak for “carrying things” after childbirth. Babies require twice their bodyweight in “stuff.”

too much stuff

We try to pare down over the years, although it takes time to get out of the habit of planning for any contingency that might arise between the house and the supermarket. Last year (more than a quarter century since I achieved motherhood) I finally bought the smallest purse that could hold my glasses, wallet, cellphone and keys.

smallest possible purse

To go places requiring more things, I just throw the small purse into a larger one and add extras.

Reading matter is an occasional issue. I bought a Kindle to keep me stocked with books and magazines, but even that began to feel heavy in my big purse.

kindle reader

While doing some research on ebooks, I  downloaded Kindle app onto my husband’s iPhone. When he updated and got a new one, we realized that the old one–with the Kindle app and all of my archived Kindle books on it–could still be used as a reader even though he was no longer paying fees on it.

If I forgo the huge pack of “point cards” I also tend to carry everywhere, it turns out that my brand new old iPhone ebook reader will fit nicely into my small purse.

Over New Year’s we took a short train trip. On the train we saw couples reading comic books side by side, couples playing with matching game devices, and so on. By the second day, I realized we were the couple, sitting together companionably, but completely absorbed in the separate worlds of our respective iPhones.

books on iPhonemahjong on iPhone

2011/1/6 木曜日

ポスト廃止 :(

Filed under: life in Gunma,life in Japan,日本語 — admin @ 14:57:00

うちから歩いて20メートルの酒屋さんが去年で廃業しました。酒類のほかに、お砂糖が切れた時とか、醤油がない!とか、夏にはアイスクリーム、宅急便預かり、切手売り等、この25年あまり色々便利に使わせていただきました。

ice creamsugarsoy saucestamps

アメリカから遊びにきた妹は酒屋さんは魔法のように何でもあるお店とちょっとだけ勘違いしたことがあります。

私は廃業の心の準備ができたと思ったが 、先ほどはがきを出しに行ったら、酒屋の前のポストまで廃止になるとの知らせが貼ってありました。

すぐそばのポストなしでこれからの人生はどうすればいいでしょうか。 うちの前に設置でもできないかな。翻訳事務所兼郵便出張所。いいかもしれません。

where’s my mailbox?

2011/1/4 火曜日

Learning to Love a New Team–the Emperor’s Cup

Filed under: English entries,life in Japan,スポーツ — admin @ 13:42:41

After the long Christmas season with its many events, it was somehow unappealing to think about cleaning house and cooking like mad to ring in the New Year in the traditional Japanese way. Never ones to stay up until midnight watching Kohaku Utagassen anyway, we  decided to celebrate our empty nest by chucking all adult responsibility and leaving town.

As everyone in Tokyo headed “home” to the countryside, we got on the Green car of the Shonan Shinjuku line, our home-packed lunch in hand, and sailed off to Tokyo for the Emperor’s Cup championship match.

When we bought our ticket weeks earlier, we had no idea who would be playing or which team we would be rooting for. We bought a seat on the “away side” because, we learned, it gets the afternoon sun.

This year we sat next to the Shimizu S Pulse supporters. S Pulse had a large percussion section that provided a harmonic accompaniment to all of the cheers. To add to the thrill, the supporters didn’t merely sing, they did complicated maneuvers requiring a high level of hand-eye coordination. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn children in Shimizu City are of above-average intelligence. S Pulse player, Ono Shinji, was amazing on the pitch–but we almost missed him due to the fun of watching the supporters. Maybe that was S Pulse’s problem, too, because they lost to Kashima Antlers 2-1. It could have been worse, but I did notice that every time an Antlers player kicked the ball, his red-and-black horizontal-striped socks were shown to excellent advantage.

お正月の正しい祝い方 The Emperor’s Cup

Filed under: life in Japan,スポーツ,日本語 — admin @ 13:15:00

クリスマスは教会なら、お正月は〜もちろんサッカーです!今年は3回目の天皇杯決勝戦に行きました。応援するチームは3日前に決めるので、券を買う時はもちろん誰がでるかわかりません。でもそんなことどうでもいいです。

券は予約席で「アウェイ」と決めています。なぜなら国立競技場の アウェイ席には太陽が当たります。今年のアウェイチームは清水エスパルスです。ベガルタ仙台のサポーターはJ1で一番まとまりがよいと思っていたが、清水はそれ以上なものでした。歌うだけではなく、各チアに振り付けがついています。そして、パーカッション類も色々あります。試合を無視して、応援団にみとられる時間は多かったかもしれません。

鹿島アントラーズのおしゃれな縞模様の靴下は捨てがたかったが、結果的私たちはエスパルスファンになってしまいました。鹿島が勝った時、ちょっとがっかりしました。 でもいいプレーがたくさん見られて、満足です!

来年のアウェイ、どのチームになるでしょうか。今から楽しみです!

soccer on New Year’s!

2010/12/13 月曜日

You can run, but you can’t hide from your adult offspring

Filed under: English entries,life in Japan,国際家族 — admin @ 7:52:18

She’s home–again. The girl we thought had left home for good.

Like the bread crumbs Hansel and Gretel left in the forest, like a dog marking it’s territory, her things–earrings, wallet, keys, money, clean and dirty laundry–make a path from her room, through the entry hall, into the living room, once around the dining room and across the  sofa bed where she insists on camping.

She has jet lag, which means she is ready for conversation first thing in the morning. Our quiet mornings are shattered–for the time being, as we reluctantly  (or not) do as we are told.

who’s the boss here?

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