Translations, even more so automatic translations, can go wrong…we’ve seen it sometimes. It might be that we need to guess the author’s intention, maybe it was a typo or sometimes it is due to the lack of knowledge on cultural or historic background of the source language / country. Some other times, there’s just no obvious reason.
As time went by, and as technology advanced, we witnessed more and more machine-based “translators”. At the beginning, they were not what we expected, to say the least. Machine-based translators are good if you want to get an overall idea of the meaning of the word, but they seldom meet up to our expectations, even today.
On the other side, we have the owners, proprietors, chiefs of different enterprises who wish to make their services, goods or ideas understandable and available to the other side of the globe. Now you, a common sense reader, will probably jump to a conclusion that they have engaged a professional translator to translate their menu, or a traffic sign or an instruction sign at a store. If this were the case, you probably would not have been reading this now. Luckily for us, and the audience around the world who like to have a good laugh, machines have probably taken over one time too many and delivered us hilarious translations.
Top 10 Funny and Wrong Automatic Translations
1. At a store:
“Please don’t touch yourself. Let us help you to try out”
2. At a hostel:
“We have good rooms and the price is very cheap. Have three human lives and have four human lives, many human lives”.
3. A traffic sign:
“Do drunken driving”
4. A price tag at a store:
“On sale – the half old chicken”
5. A warning sign on a door:
“Engine room is serious place”
6. A sign above a fire extinguisher:
“A hand grenade”
7. A wet floor sign:
“Execution in progress”
8. A price list at a hotel:
“Wet male scholar piece of cloth”
9. A menu at a restaurant:
“Eaten raw lobster – 16$”
10. A sign at a park:
“Do not disturb. Tiny grass is dreaming”
Quality has its price but bear in mind: it’s always more expensive repairing the damage.