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Old 07-02-2012, 05:19 AM   #1
Joanna
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Question A good way to deal with translated books (multiple language versions)?

I am looking for some nice workaround to deal with translated books. Sometimes I have two or three language versions of the same book and I would like to be able to easily pick the one I need and know what languages I choose from.

I was thinking about a custom "Original title" column (but this would mean a lot of work, and does not seem very practical because in many cases it would just mean having the same information stored twice in the database).

I could obviously just add some info to the Comments field (my dream would actually be to link to the book from there - that's the feature I am dreaming about, cross-referencing and linking to various books).

I could probably set up some custom series column and treat all translations of a given book as a series.

I could probably do some other kinds of things so I'm basically looking for some advice and inspiration before I start testing my own ideas one by one and go crazy .

Some additional information about my database:

Books with multiple language versions take up ca. 5-10% of my library. Usually there are two language versions for one book, in rare cases there are three. I have books in four languages in total (and most probably there is going to be one more soon if I decide to brush up my language skills) and there are almost all possible combinations of source and target languages... Plus books that were translated from some languages I don't know (and sometimes I have two translations of such books - but I'm not really interested in keeping the original titles in the languages I don't understand).
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:05 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joanna View Post
I am looking for some nice workaround to deal with translated books. Sometimes I have two or three language versions of the same book and I would like to be able to easily pick the one I need and know what languages I choose from.

I was thinking about a custom "Original title" column (but this would mean a lot of work, and does not seem very practical because in many cases it would just mean having the same information stored twice in the database).

I could obviously just add some info to the Comments field (my dream would actually be to link to the book from there - that's the feature I am dreaming about, cross-referencing and linking to various books).

I could probably set up some custom series column and treat all translations of a given book as a series.

I could probably do some other kinds of things so I'm basically looking for some advice and inspiration before I start testing my own ideas one by one and go crazy .

Some additional information about my database:

Books with multiple language versions take up ca. 5-10% of my library. Usually there are two language versions for one book, in rare cases there are three. I have books in four languages in total (and most probably there is going to be one more soon if I decide to brush up my language skills) and there are almost all possible combinations of source and target languages... Plus books that were translated from some languages I don't know (and sometimes I have two translations of such books - but I'm not really interested in keeping the original titles in the languages I don't understand).
There is a Language column, so setting that different for each book would mean that the book is NOT considered a 'duplicate', but a separate title.

The Tag Browser has a Language section.
click the tag you want, then hold the ctrl key and select the language
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Old 07-02-2012, 04:57 PM   #3
Joanna
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theducks View Post
There is a Language column, so setting that different for each book would mean that the book is NOT considered a 'duplicate', but a separate title.

The Tag Browser has a Language section.
click the tag you want, then hold the ctrl key and select the language
Thanks but I must have not made myself clear. I do know what the Language column is, I use it passionately (it's actually one of the few columns I use custom coloring with ). Plus, these books wouldn't be considered duplicates anyway, as they have different titles (in the language of the book).

The problem is different: when I find a book I would like to know straight away if there are other versions available so that I can choose what I need (as I don't usually remember if a given book is available in other languages). If I search for authors this is usually not a huge issue (provided that I don't have plenty books written by the same author), as all books are displayed (although I sometimes can't easily tell which books are the same (titles are sometimes translated very freely, covers are different etc.).

If I look for the title, this is much more problematic: only one language version can be found. I could add the original title column and search in both columns but it still doesn't solve the issue (not helpful if I decide to look for the translated title, or for genre etc.).

OK, I probably write too much. I hope I haven't scared everybody away . Please help!
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Old 07-02-2012, 06:03 PM   #4
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I think I would set up a custom column with a fixed set of values - the languages you have books in. Or just add them as tags, with a special prefix, if you don't want a separate column.

Once you've enter this data, at least you'll now at a glance what other languages you have a book in. You'll still have to find the version you want though. But restrict to author, and it shouldn't be to difficult, since you'll know which language to search for. An Original Title column would make this easier, since you could search/sort on it.
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