Archiver > QUEBEC-RESEARCH > 2002-11 > 1037852456

From: "Ronald Johnston" <>
Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2002 23:20:56 -0500
References: <>

Evening Mr. Taggart

Alas, I see my request to have our conversations private has fallen on deaf
ears. I am again requesting that these conversations regarding the
translation of requests be held off the list. This is something I think all
would appreciate. However, I will answer your a few points here that you
have brought forward.

First on your so called analogy. For over 30 years I worked as a land
surveyor before my retirement. In 1972 I purchased a home here in Sault Ste.
Marie and shortly after I finished off my basement, putting in both a
laundry room and a bathroom. In the process, although I did not have any
experience in plumbing, I installed all the pipes, both water and waste.
Here it is, 30 years and not a leak. Not bad for a nonplumber Eh?, perhaps I
should take a shot at surgery. :-))))))

Secondly, I do not use any type of on-line translation program, but instead
rely on my many hours of pouring over old records, the help of friends who
are French speaking, and data picked up from other tranlators on this and
other message boards to assist me in my translations. There are also some
very good sites on the net that are very helpful in this regard, one being
the ARTFL Project French-English Dictionary site at the University of
Chicago that containes a online 1600's french dictionary that contains many
words that have disappeared from the present French language. I have found
that the online translators (like babelfish) are in the most part very
wanting and are not that dependable. They can be used to get a gist of the
message but not to really translate anything, especially the "old french"
Anyhows, enough is enough. I again ask that if you want to continue on with
this to please do it off this list. From the communications I have receieved
from other listers I know they want it this way.

Ron Johnston

----- Original Message -----
From: <>
To: <>; <>
Sent: Wednesday, November 20, 2002 4:49 PM

> Some years ago, my father and I were watching television together, and a
> commercial came up, advertising materials a home-owner might use to
> the supply and waste piping under the kitchen sink. My dad, who worked
> than fifty years as a plumber, turned to me and said, "Anyone who knows
> nothing about plumbing and who tries to replace the piping of his kitchen
> sink is like someone who knows nothing about surgery and who tries to take
> out an appendix." Whether at midnight, or in midafternoon, the analogy
> obvious, and pertinent.
> I apologize to ListUncle and to the members of the List for the tone of my
> previous comment. Nonetheless, my opinions on the futility of using
> programs to translate genealogical documents, and the arrogance of those
> attempt to translate documents from languages they neither read nor write
> well known, and I stand by them.

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