Friday, January 29, 2010
I just bought a copy of The Ayatollah Begs to Differ, and the first page talks about how to begin stories in Persian (yeki bood, yeki nabood or یکی بود یکی نبود), which literally means "there was one, there wasn't one." Turkish uses the same when starting stories - bir varmış, bir yokmuş.
Anyway, after that it led to another story that starts with "zeer-e gonbad'e kabood" or "under the bruised (dark) dome (sky)", so setting up a pretty dismal stage for the beginning of the story. Sometimes I like to take a look at what Google Translate does with sayings like this so I wrote it out:
زیر گنبد کبود
Now let's feed it into Google Translate to see what it does with it. Google Translate works instantly now so it went like this:
زیر - following
زیر کنبد - under dome
So far, so good. Add the third word though and it turns to this:
Answer: HOUSTON. Yeah, Google Translate still needs some work.