Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Hangul and Google Translate

I've been wanting to learn Korean for awhile but none of the local community colleges offer a Korean language class; it's always Chinese and Japanese. I have a book, a dictionary, and about 100 episodes of "Let's Speak Korean!" but never got too far. My original goal was to learn Korean so I can watch K-drama or listen to K-pop and recognize some words but I still can't understand anything (except 사랑해). Now my goal is to learn to read just enough Hangul so I can sing a Korean song next time we go to 노래방 (Korean karaoke).

One of the things I'm doing is learning to type Hangul on my computer. Right now I'm using my Mac and the 2-Set Korean input method which is the same as using a Korean keyboard. The keys are arranged in some order that has nothing to do with how it sounds and the English keycap. There is a Romaja input method that tries to match the Hangul sound with English (ㅂ is 'B' and ㅈ is 'J') but I'm going for the whole native experience. For practice, I'm transcribing song lyrics from music videos. I have to read each syllabic block, figure out the components, and find the right keys on the keyboard. Fun! I think it's helping a bit.

First song I'm going to try is 너를 사랑해. Not sure who originally sang it but I have a version by S.E.S and Seeya. Just for kicks, I fed the chorus through Google Translate. I see a lot of Engrish in China and on websites, probably due to blind use of machine translators, but it's a good way to check my Hangul typing. The initial result was gibberish due to a few typos. :)

Korean:
너를 사랑해 나의 마음이
너를 생각할수록
나는 행복해 다른 누구도
난 부럽지 않아

English:
I love you my heart
Thinking of you, the more
I'm happy anyone
I do not envy

Since Asian languages are somewhat related, I also tried Korean to Chinese translation:
我愛你我的心
想你,更
我很高興有人
我並不羨慕

Not sure if that's better or worse since my Chinese reading skills are pretty bad. At least Traditional Chinese was an option; I'm even worse with Simplified Chinese. Hmm, I think this is a love song.

Learning Hangul is also nominally useful at a Korean restaurant. I was able to sound out a few dishes at lunch last week until I found one I recognized.
너를 사랑해

Chorus:
너를 사랑해 나의 마음이
너를 생각할수록
나는 행복해 다른 누구도
난 부럽지 않아

맑은 유리창으로
햇살이 나를 반기는 이 느낌
믿을 수가 없어져 오 예
너무도 내게 소중함을
느낄 수 있도록 해준 너

긴 밤이 오래될수록
아침이 더디 올수록 그리워
우리 둘이 영원히 함께
같은 공간 손에
아픔이 많더라도 괜찮아

[chorus]

오렌지의 향기로
살며시 미소짓는 너의 웃음이
모든 걸 다 잊게 해
오 예 사랑해
지금 기적보다 놀라운
날들이 온 거야

나에겐 지금 너보다
너에겐 지금 너보다
소중한 다른 사람 없다면 함께
영원히 같은 집에
서로 얼굴을 보며 살아가

[chorus]

내 곁에 있고 싶어

[chorus]

4 comments:

totochi said...

OK, the whole thing in Chinese (it even translated "chorus")... cool.

愛你

合唱:
我愛你我的心
想你,更
我很高興有人
我並不羨慕

有明確的窗口
太陽歡迎我的感覺
相信經歷啊,是啊
過於重視我
你能感覺到我

長期漫漫長夜,更
我想念未來上午緩慢
隨著我們兩個永遠
手中的同一空間
這可能會導致疼痛,如果沒關係

[合唱]

隨著香味的桔子
輕輕的微笑你的笑聲
忘記一切
噢我愛你
令人驚訝的奇蹟,現在比
天有你在這裡

我比你現在
你比你現在
與其他人並不重要
同樣的房子永遠
生活在彼此面對面

[合唱]

我想留

[合唱]

Louise said...

hi,
you probably don't remember me. we met over a lunch at National Taiwan University few years ago. i just want to tell you, your blog is really interesting. and, i don't know how many of your readers read Chinese, but this translation is funny. it simply doesn't make any sense at all.... regards, louise

totochi said...

Hi Louise,

I remember... how are you doing? I haven't been back to Taiwan since that trip. Are you still working at NTU?

Thanks for the comment. I can only read some of the characters but I was pretty sure that the Chinese translation would make any sense.

Take care,
-Tony

totochi said...

Oops... would NOT make any sense.

:)