Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Bible Study software, Unicode, Fonts, Keyboards, creating Web pages in Greek, and other software issues.
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Jacob Rhoden
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Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Jacob Rhoden » January 12th, 2016, 8:29 pm

Currently I do my translation/reading practice by writing out the greek on one line, and writing out the English below. It works quite well, but I would much rather be doing this on my computer.

How do people do this, do they create word documents with tables rows/columns for each word? It seems unbelievably tedious. Are there any ways to do this kind of thing (see attachment) easily?
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Stephen Hughes
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Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Stephen Hughes » January 13th, 2016, 12:05 am

I don't think you are going to find software to check your notes. Here are a few things I noticed:
  • κέκριται is medio-passive, the form is not κέκρικεν as you are supposing.
  • ὀδηγήσει is a future form.
  • "by himself" - does that mean a single person (μόνος)? I don't think the Greek has that in mind.
  • ἐστίν with a neuter plural subject and complement has the singular form of the verb to be, but acts as the plural.
  • The second ἀναγγελεῖ only has the one lambda. That indicates that it is a future form of the verb, like the first instance was too.
  • Look again at οὖν in verse 17, it is a discourse marker. It is not a demonstrative.
  • ἡμῖν is not ὑμῖν. If you need a mnemonic the first letter of the Greek is the same as the last letter of the English. "We" - μεῖς & "You" - μεῖς
  • You probably know, but let me confirm anyway, the question marks ";" go with Τί ἐστιν τοῦτο ὃ ...
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Tim Evans
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Joined: July 10th, 2015, 1:40 am

Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Tim Evans » January 13th, 2016, 12:23 am

Stephen Hughes wrote:I don't think you are going to find software to check your notes. Here are a few things I noticed:
  • κέκριται is medio-passive, the form is not κέκρικεν as you are supposing.
  • ὀδηγήσει is a future form.
  • "by himself" - does that mean a single person (μόνος)? I don't think the Greek has that in mind.
  • ἐστίν with a neuter plural subject and complement has the singular form of the verb to be, but acts as the plural.
  • The second ἀναγγελεῖ only has the one lambda. That indicates that it is a future form of the verb, like the first instance was too.
  • Look again at οὖν in verse 17, it is a discourse marker. It is not a demonstrative.
  • ἡμῖν is not ὑμῖν. If you need a mnemonic the first letter of the Greek is the same as the last letter of the English. "We" - μεῖς & "You" - μεῖς
  • You probably know, but let me confirm anyway, the question marks ";" go with Τί ἐστιν τοῦτο ὃ ...
Thanks Stephen, I really appreciate your feedback on my notes, I wasn't expecting it, but it is very helpful! It seems my main question was a little unclear. I was trying to ask about software that would allow me to do this on a computer, not software that would check my work. (i.e. to produce output that looked like that). Does that make more sense? I imagine you could do it with table column/rows in a word processor, but that would surely be more painful than just writing it with pen and paper.

Anyway, thanks again for your feedback, Im going over it now.

Stephen Hughes
Posts: 3332
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am

Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Stephen Hughes » January 13th, 2016, 5:03 am

I see, a piece of software to allow you to include your own notes with the text. Not one which makes suggestions on the translation notes that you have written.

Having your notes in that format might make your notes on the text neater and more manageable, but not more correct or more valuable.
Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Kirk Lowery
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Joined: August 27th, 2013, 10:40 am

Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Kirk Lowery » January 13th, 2016, 9:36 am

If I were going to do this, I would use a spreadsheet, such as LibreOffice Calc, Excel, etc.

Spreadsheets give you good control of columns, alignment, and formatting of cells. It can handle free-form text and linewrap. You can add notes and annotations linked to specific cells or a range of cells.

Just an idea to try. :-)
Kirk E. Lowery

Jonathan Robie
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Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Jonathan Robie » January 13th, 2016, 11:35 am

Kirk Lowery wrote:If I were going to do this, I would use a spreadsheet, such as LibreOffice Calc, Excel, etc.

Spreadsheets give you good control of columns, alignment, and formatting of cells. It can handle free-form text and linewrap. You can add notes and annotations linked to specific cells or a range of cells.
Yes.

Another option: I take a GNT text, copy and paste it into a file, and write my notes in between the verses. You can use a markdown format to make that a little easier, if you like. That's how I'm currently producing my Sunday School lessons.

You can also use a word processor.

If you're comfortable with markdown, it eliminates some of the formatting and font problems you get with cut and paste working with multiple sources.

Excellent topic, by the way, and I like your screenshot.
ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

Emma Ehrhardt
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
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Re: Suggestions for translation notes in software?

Post by Emma Ehrhardt » June 10th, 2016, 5:24 pm

Not sure of your tech level, so here's a few options...

To replicate this on your computer:
- Copy/Paste the Greek text into a word processor
- Search/ReplaceAll to replace every space character with a tab character
- Copy/Paste this version into excel, now you have 1 word per column
- For longer passages, I'd see in general how many columns fit on a page (~7-8?). You can manually cut/paste to keep putting them in shorter sections. Or if you're willing learn a bit about regular expressions, you can split the text in your word processor (like notepad++) to add 2 newline characters after every 8 words, and directly copy the whole thing into a spreadsheet.

Another option, probably overkill, but that will automatically do word-wrap for you is SIL's Toolbox. (google it for more info)


Some additional thoughts just for fun...
- When you want to practice the Greek alphabet, or pay close attention to how to spell words, writing greek manually is useful, but only in small doses because I think fatigue sets in quickly. Once you've developed some fluency in reading (and being familiar with spelling) in the language, then writing out by hand is something I reserve for practicing short phrases or sentences I think are special or noteworthy. Just writing out tons of Greek by hand otherwise is, as you wrote, unbelievably tedious, and doesn't bring significant value, in my opinion.
- I find value in separating reading from translation activities. Reading comes first for me, where I'm just focusing on the text (and staying away from English as much as I can). The emphasis is 'Can I understand the gist of this phrase/sentence/passage?'. When I had developed a certain proficiency in reading/comprehension (i.e. comprehending in Greek, not auto-translating into English!), then it felt appropriate to start considering how I might translate it for an English audience. 'Translations' are easier for teachers to grade and feel like tangible proof that you're learning, but they're a very indirect measure of your Greek language proficiency.
Emma Ehrhardt
Computational Linguist

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