Sorting it all Out Michael Kaplan's random stuff of dubious value Be sure to read the disclaimer here first!
Sometimes the best bugs are the ones we find before we ship the product.
Because if we shipped it then it is out there in the wild causing problems. It may be interesting or intriguing, sure. it may be embarrassing. But unless you are an alt.i.hate.microsoft deacon then it won't be as truly funny
However, the bugs found prior to ship, they can be pretty freaking hilarious.
I mean who doesn't look at this screenshot from Does bear sh*t in woods^H^H^H^H^HSlovenia? from the beta Slovenian LIP where Sleep and Hibernate were both translated into the same word:
and find it at least a little bit funny?
Or this beta splash screen from Windows 2000 where they mirrored the logo bitmap:
But you see? It's fun because they were found before it shipped and we learned valuable lessons about localizability and localization!
Anyway, my Norwegian friend Kim told me about such another bug just recently, this one in the pre-release Norwegian IE9.
The story is a great tale (some names removed to protect the protected):
I had an issue with ██████████, in that some lines just decided to go blank (who doesn't love ████████...). Turns out there's a patch you need to accept (not fully tested by MS, etc.), and you get a temp password.
I download the patch, and try to execute it. IE9 & SmartScreen Filtering is very suspicious and try to tell me it might be fishy. Looks like SmartScreen has some logic that can detect how often something is downloaded. Anyway, it tells me that this particular patch/update is not downloaded very often and not signed by the author. It continues to warn me that I should delete this program if I don't know for sure whether it's good.
All good so far, and at least I get two options:
The two options are "Delete (recommended)" and "Run away".
The translator (who in this case is an ex-colleague of mine, which I know very very well :) misread "Run anyway" as "Run away".
And our colleague Claus pointed out (in addition to the hilarious bug (which was fixed prior to ship!) the lessons that can be gleaned from this bug:
it is an excellent example of how important it is to localize in context, and even when you do localize it as such, you preview and ask the question – does what I wrote really make sense?Then look at the source string again to compare – Run Anyway
Of course we can't really get fully past the image that Run Away brings to many people.
That of the Killer Bunny from Monty Python and the Holy Grail:
Luckily the QA process provides the appropriate Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch so we don't have to Run Away!
So does anyone who watched the Norwegian dubbed or subtitled version of the movie know if they yelled Løp av sted! in that scene? Because if they did that is totally awesome. :-)
As are funny bugs like this that get found prior to ship!
> It is totally awesome if they yell "Løp av sted!" in the Norwegian dub of Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Except that in Scandinavia, movies are usually subtitled, not dubbed. Only children's movies are usually dubbed.
It would be cool in subtitle too....
Løp av sted! Løp av sted!
Sorry, subtitle in Norwegian is "Flykt", which would probably be "Flee" or "Escape" in English. "Løp av sted" is rather silly, I would say it indicate some kind of meaningless (without purpose) running; something you could say to your children when you let them run in the park or to your wife if she want to go jogging, but had to wait for you to come home and watch the kids.
The translation is still very funny - I can't see any way that expression could be used in a computer program, but I'm only a humble Norwegian programmer and not a Microsoft translator...
Monty Phyton and Microsoft are both funny, but still very different...