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andytheanimal

How to translate foreign geocaches

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Are there any sites or tools (apart from something like Google) to translate caches abroad?

 

Ie if I'm going to France, what's the easiest way to translate details to read up on the cache?

Ideally a third party website that takes the cache details and automatically provides a translation in another language?

Thanks!

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Are there any sites or tools (apart from something like Google) to translate caches abroad?

 

Ie if I'm going to France, what's the easiest way to translate details to read up on the cache?

Ideally a third party website that takes the cache details and automatically provides a translation in another language?

Thanks!

 

If you use Google Chrome, when you're viewing any web page it will detect the language and offer a translation. The translations are not perfect but it's usually good enough to provide any information needed to find the cache. It would probably help to print off translated listings as well. However, if you want to use encrypted hints and/or spoiler photos it's difficult to do that in the field. If you have an iPhone check out an app called World Lens. When you launch the app you can view foreign language text (it only supports a few languages) using the camera on the phone and it will display the translated text on the phone as if you're looking at the text in "real life".

 

 

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Sometimes trying to get to an untranslated hide is a challenge itself :) I did that once or twice in Finland where they have fairly large number of listings in Finnish. It's funny when you are trying to find a cache having only its coordinates and (sometimes, but not always) its size :)

 

In our country we have a tradition of translating all listings into English. (Some of our listings are actually in English only).

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We just got back from a cruise round various Spanish cities and islands. We are relatively inexperienced cachers and we really struggled with the listings/hints in Spanish. We tried using a 2nd phone with the Word-Lens app, but it was unreliable.

To make things even more difficult the GPS position was OK in some locations and absolutely useless in others. In addition there were very few free WiFi connections to download the cache details (don't want to get charged a fortune for foreign data roaming).

 

I was hoping that the Premium package would include some sort of translation facility, but it doesn't seem to have this.

Alternatively could cache owners be prompted to enter more than one language when they list a new cache?

 

How can we make Geocaching a truly international activity, so no matter where you are in the world you can be confident of being able to read the listing/hint?

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We just got back from a cruise round various Spanish cities and islands. We are relatively inexperienced cachers and we really struggled with the listings/hints in Spanish. We tried using a 2nd phone with the Word-Lens app, but it was unreliable.

To make things even more difficult the GPS position was OK in some locations and absolutely useless in others. In addition there were very few free WiFi connections to download the cache details (don't want to get charged a fortune for foreign data roaming).

 

I was hoping that the Premium package would include some sort of translation facility, but it doesn't seem to have this.

Alternatively could cache owners be prompted to enter more than one language when they list a new cache?

 

How can we make Geocaching a truly international activity, so no matter where you are in the world you can be confident of being able to read the listing/hint?

 

Solution for the no data/wifi thing: use a GPS.

 

Solution for making it for "international friendly" is to make all caches Chinese. As it's the most spoken language, it's more likely that any person will be aento understand it....

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We just got back from a cruise round various Spanish cities and islands. We are relatively inexperienced cachers and we really struggled with the listings/hints in Spanish. We tried using a 2nd phone with the Word-Lens app, but it was unreliable.

To make things even more difficult the GPS position was OK in some locations and absolutely useless in others. In addition there were very few free WiFi connections to download the cache details (don't want to get charged a fortune for foreign data roaming).

 

I was hoping that the Premium package would include some sort of translation facility, but it doesn't seem to have this.

Alternatively could cache owners be prompted to enter more than one language when they list a new cache?

 

How can we make Geocaching a truly international activity, so no matter where you are in the world you can be confident of being able to read the listing/hint?

 

Solution for the no data/wifi thing: use a GPS.

 

Solution for making it for "international friendly" is to make all caches Chinese. As it's the most spoken language, it's more likely that any person will be aento understand it....

 

Although Chinese might be the most spoken language that's probably because China has a really large population. I would strongly suspect that the most commonly spoken language by geocachers is English.

 

That said, I would never mandate that geocaching listings be available in a common language. If a cache owner only speaks Spanish, they're probably going to have to use some sort of translation service to translate their listing into another language. If a translation service is going to be used, I think it makes more sense for the finder to use it rather than CO. After all, the finder is visiting some other country and personally I think it's more appropriate for the visitor to some other country to attempt to understand that countries native language rather than expect natives of that country to understand the language of any visitor.

 

I don't understand the native language in many of the countries I have visited and my solutions is that I just don't try to find every cache, but select from cache listings that I can understand (and sometimes using a translation service is sufficient).

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I agree. Good explanation.

We just got back from a cruise round various Spanish cities and islands. We are relatively inexperienced cachers and we really struggled with the listings/hints in Spanish. We tried using a 2nd phone with the Word-Lens app, but it was unreliable.

To make things even more difficult the GPS position was OK in some locations and absolutely useless in others. In addition there were very few free WiFi connections to download the cache details (don't want to get charged a fortune for foreign data roaming).

 

I was hoping that the Premium package would include some sort of translation facility, but it doesn't seem to have this.

Alternatively could cache owners be prompted to enter more than one language when they list a new cache?

 

How can we make Geocaching a truly international activity, so no matter where you are in the world you can be confident of being able to read the listing/hint?

 

Solution for the no data/wifi thing: use a GPS.

 

Solution for making it for "international friendly" is to make all caches Chinese. As it's the most spoken language, it's more likely that any person will be aento understand it....

 

Although Chinese might be the most spoken language that's probably because China has a really large population. I would strongly suspect that the most commonly spoken language by geocachers is English.

 

That said, I would never mandate that geocaching listings be available in a common language. If a cache owner only speaks Spanish, they're probably going to have to use some sort of translation service to translate their listing into another language. If a translation service is going to be used, I think it makes more sense for the finder to use it rather than CO. After all, the finder is visiting some other country and personally I think it's more appropriate for the visitor to some other country to attempt to understand that countries native language rather than expect natives of that country to understand the language of any visitor.

 

I don't understand the native language in many of the countries I have visited and my solutions is that I just don't try to find every cache, but select from cache listings that I can understand (and sometimes using a translation service is sufficient).

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We had similar discussion there at one of our local geocaching websites. No perfect solution. One I used in Germany was Locus + Google Translate (offline version). It was pretty easy to translate descriptions, weird behaviour while translating logs and complete headache with hints. I won't say I was happy but it was better then nothing. The majority of caches were in German language only.

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Using Google Translate is fine on a tablet, but not on a phone. So to cache I need my geocaching app and chrome and switch back and forth. Not very convenient.

 

Has anyone asked Groundspeak if they're adding a translate button to cache descriptions?

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Using Google Translate is fine on a tablet, but not on a phone. So to cache I need my geocaching app and chrome and switch back and forth. Not very convenient.

 

I've used Google Translate on a smartphone. Indeed, you don't need Chrome. You need a Google Translate app with an offline dictionary (these dictionaries can be downloaded from within the app separately - depending on your destination country). Then you need to copy and paste text. In some particular situations it may be even easier. Not the most convenient way of doing the job but still something.

 

The worst thing is that Google Translate appears to be useful not in all languages. I experimented with a series of languages in my geocaching practice and discovered that German -> English was pretty much OK; Spanish -> English was noticeably worse; and Lithuanian -> English was useless. I can only imagine how hard it is with languages like Hungarian and Russian!

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Using Google Translate is fine on a tablet, but not on a phone. So to cache I need my geocaching app and chrome and switch back and forth. Not very convenient.

 

I've used Google Translate on a smartphone. Indeed, you don't need Chrome. You need a Google Translate app with an offline dictionary (these dictionaries can be downloaded from within the app separately - depending on your destination country). Then you need to copy and paste text. In some particular situations it may be even easier. Not the most convenient way of doing the job but still something.

 

The worst thing is that Google Translate appears to be useful not in all languages. I experimented with a series of languages in my geocaching practice and discovered that German -> English was pretty much OK; Spanish -> English was noticeably worse; and Lithuanian -> English was useless. I can only imagine how hard it is with languages like Hungarian and Russian!

 

The English <-> German translation used to be pretty but it's much better now.

 

Here's the translation of something you wrote in Russian another thread:

 

"Colleagues geokeshery! We are pleased to announce that the website geocaching.com with our help was Russian interface translation.

 

To see the result, on the home page in the upper right corner, select "Russian" instead of "English". If you are registered on geocaching.com, the site will remember your choice.

 

Today, a large team of volunteer translators for over 130 people from around the world. The site has been translated (or translated) into 28 languages. Now he is Russian. The volume of work is about 70 thousand words (more than 452 thousand characters). Website translation is not complete, as Groundspeak provides materials gradually. We continue to translate the text as they become available.

 

If you find a mistake or you will have suggestions for translation, please contact us.

 

We thank Groundspeak for user-friendly interface for operational and technical support."

 

It's not perfect but it's definitely understandable.

Edited by NYPaddleCacher
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Yes, as I noticed earlier, Google Translate was pretty much good for cache descriptions but significantly worse when language became less formal and contained jargon, i.e. cache hints and logs. In Latvia and Lithuania I found it of little help. Sometimes I failed to understand anything and one third of words wasn't translated at all. Luckily, in big cities and nearby popular tourist attractions it wasn't a big problem.

Edited by -CJ-
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It gets more interesting if you're more into multi's and mysteries (like we are). Our last trip was to Norway in March and as we were there a few times before we have done almost all "tourist stuff". We went just to see the Aurora Borealis so we had the whole day "off" for caching. A few months in advance I started working on the caches we wanted to do (many were in English) but some weren't and while the questions for the mysteries might be in English finding the answers was less difficult when searching in Norwegian. We had several caches that we translated from one language to another several times over. Sometimes even local knowledge was needed but when we really got stuck the CO's were more than helpful. As always we had more caches selected/solved than we had time for but I keep them for a possible next trip.. you never know B)

With still months to go I'm already working on Australian caches, no translation necessary but a few mysteries require local knowledge (local artists, tv programs..) All great fun even if we won't have the time to go look for them.

 

So, if if you really want some serious caching it will take time preparing, translate what you need translated in advance (Google translate) or ask the CO for a translating. Translating on the spot will be time consuming. Taking a small list with keywords for hints might also be a good idea (under a rock, in a tree, high, low, drainpipe... words like that).

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Yes, as I noticed earlier, Google Translate was pretty much good for cache descriptions but significantly worse when language became less formal and contained jargon, i.e. cache hints and logs. In Latvia and Lithuania I found it of little help. Sometimes I failed to understand anything and one third of words wasn't translated at all. Luckily, in big cities and nearby popular tourist attractions it wasn't a big problem.

 

I agree that it works fairly well for cache descriptions. It might not work well enough for solving some puzzle caches though. I've been working on some puzzle caches in Paris and there are some that, after translating from French to English, I've decided are not worth trying to figure out.

 

 

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There is now a geocaching app called Cachly that claims to translate. I am going to Paris in a couple of weeks and thinking about buying it. Has anyone used it? Can you access translated caches offline? It may be worth the 7 dollars it costs.

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There is now a geocaching app called Cachly that claims to translate. I am going to Paris in a couple of weeks and thinking about buying it. Has anyone used it? Can you access translated caches offline? It may be worth the 7 dollars it costs.

 

I haven't tried Cachly but suspect that it just integrates with an online translation service. Coincidently, I will be flying to Paris from Dublin (where I am now) Thursday night and back home Saturday morning. I have a meeting all day on Friday so I doubt that I'll get a chance to do any caching. After that last post in 2015 I was in Paris for almost a week and found a few caches and didn't really need a translation. I've been able to find caches in lots of different countries (just got my 24th) without translating the descriptions.

 

 

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NYPaddleCacher is right: according to this review Cachly doesn't do any translation itself, it integrates with Google Translate.

 

I've been able to find caches in lots of different countries (just got my 24th) without translating the descriptions

 

I like to read descriptions and know more about places I visit. I suppose that people who're interested in translation tools are mostly of the same sort, so it's not only about one's ability to find a hidden box without a hint.

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When I travel to non English speaking countrys i use this macro to translate the description and the hint.

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When I travel to non English speaking countries i use this macro to translate the description and the hint.

 

And here is the link to the macro's release thread (for a better understanding what the macro actually does).

TranslateCaches.gsk

 

Hans

Edited by HHL
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