Over the last three weeks, we’ve had that “If it’s Tuesday, it must be Arabic” feeling (with apologies to the movie title). We’ve had visits from members of the Arabic and Swedish translation teams, plus discussions with the Norwegian and Spanish translation teams (by e-mail and teleconference, respectively).
Ann Tobin, a member of the translation team at the National Library of Sweden, paid a working visit to the Dewey Editorial Office at the Library of Congress November 30-December 4. The Swedish translation will employ a mixed approach. The Introduction, Glossary, and Tables 1-6 will be translated into Swedish. The top levels of the schedules plus the full hierarchy of classes down to and including classes with a defined level of literary warrant will be translated into Swedish; the rest of the classes will be ingested directly into the translation as English-language records. Manual records will be translated if associated with classes in Swedish; otherwise, they will be included in English. The translation will be accompanied by separate indexes in Swedish and English. (For more information on the mixed translation model, see here; for more information about the adoption of the DDC in Sweden, see here.) During Ann’s visit, we reviewed the Swedish versions of the Introduction; Glossary; and Table 1, 4, and 6. We also discussed proposals and issues related to geographic areas, education, animal husbandry (yes, a new provision for reindeer farming will be coming to the DDC soon!), sports, literature, and historical periods. Additional topics of discussion included training, translation workflows, and WebDewey 2.0. Lest you think it was all work and no play, we managed to have many interesting meals together (and helped Ann execute her plan of trying a variety of hamburgers across the city) and even caught a world premiere of a new piano concerto by U.S. composer Jennifer Higdon at the Kennedy Center (see here for a review of the performance we attended together).
Our colleagues on the Spanish translation team in Colombia have just completed work on a local translation support system that produces DDC data in an XML format (one compatible with our current format). We expect to start reviewing parts of the new full Spanish translation in early 2010.
Meanwhile, our colleagues at the National Library of Norway are busy planning for a new Norwegian translation of the full DDC (previous Norwegian translations have been customized abridgments of the DDC). Work will begin in early 2010.
Finally, yesterday (yes, Arabic on Tuesday) we had a visit from Dr. Sohair Wastawy (Bibliotheca Alexandrina) to discuss progress on the Arabic translation of the full DDC. We reviewed the translation timetable, plus the latest version of the proposed expansion for Islam.