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Doing Biz On eBay

I’ve always wondered what the Chinese-script company names on eBay meant, so I fed some into Google Translate (clicky for more dots):

Chinese eBay Company Names

Chinese eBay Company Names

Huh.

As the saying goes, ol’ Deng must be living “… modestly, if the kind of money he was getting out of me meant anything to him.”

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  1. #1 by Frans on 2018-01-06 - 07:53

    I know that Shenzhen is just a city, but that second name reminds me a lot of this game I just bought on Humble Bundle: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shenzhen_I/O

    • #2 by Ed on 2018-01-06 - 09:51

      I’m sure things get lost in the translations, but all the names seem to come from a Markov-chain generator. In fact, that’s a thing: https://hipsum.co/?paras=1&type=hipster-centric

      • #3 by Frans on 2018-01-06 - 10:46

        Incidentally, did you try any alternative machine translation services like Bing or Yandex?

        • #4 by Ed on 2018-01-06 - 11:28

          Nope: one translation = amusement value, two = a project!

  2. #5 by celem on 2018-01-07 - 09:02

    If Deng is honest enough to use that business name I’d buy from him.

  3. #6 by Fourier Ng on 2018-01-08 - 03:33

    “四海芯舟” is four seas (means worldwide) chip boat.
    “萨拉摩尔” is the homophonic translation of “sellmore” in Chinese.

    • #7 by Ed on 2018-01-08 - 12:03

      Your translations certainly make more sense!

      Perhaps the Google translation depends more on sound than literal meaning: “chip boat” becomes “Core Boat” and “sell more” turns into “Salam Moore”.

      IIRC, their translations come from Markov models trained on their huge collection of “known good” Rosetta Stones, so we get weird outcomes where they lack enough good matches.

      Thanks for the background!

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