George Bernard Shaw said something like "the main problem with communication is the illusion that it has occurred."
Last weekend I attended a workshop with participants from several private schools in the country, to discuss issues related to international education (IE) and ways to operationalize IE in classroom settings with limited diversity. I have been contemplating the presentations and discussions all week, and will begin a series of posts on what I believe is, and what is not, international about IE, and whether we mean something altogether different when we use that term.
But first, since it's Friday, I want to share an interesting website that shows the vulnerability of the nexus between what we mean and what we say. Lost in translation uses BabelFish translation software to bounce a text between English and five other languages, making a total of ten translations, ending in English. If the application doesn't completely break down (which it does sometimes), you might end up with something completely irrelevant, or perhaps oracular.
When I put Oscar Wilde's quote through, I got:
The general problem with transference is the illusion, that one that was here.
Of course it is.