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Interested in a Scanlation Application?

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From User Message Body
irational
Post #577955
Member

12:30 am, Nov 23 2012
Posts: 24


I happen to have a really bad habit of making ambitious projects, and before I get started on this one, I thought this would be hella useful to gauge the community to see how helpful a scanlation application would be.

And by scanlation application, I mean a desktop application you can use to organize and keep track of your group, members, files, etc and so forth. For instance, some groups use dropbox for files and they can access those files from any computer with dropbox installed. It would be something similar to that.

Ideally:

- Application can run on any computer
- Single account (in case you are in different groups)
- Can track members (past/present), projects (on-going, future, dropped), chapters, cleans, raws, etc.
- Default: restricted access to only those in group
- Uses a server
- Can upload/download/preview files (preview for jpg, gif, png files)
- Admins/Mods/Leaders of groups can change settings
- Keep track of special terms for different projects
- Edit Word/Text Documents
- Keep track of fonts
- Message boards (optional)
- Allow direct downloads for releases
- Indicate which projects groups are interested in to avoid clashing (suggested by Kaitentsuki)

Some ideas to build this is:

- MySQL DB
- Java (JRE 7)
- A dedicated server with good hosting (this would be expensive but that can come later)
- An internet connection

Obviously some things can (and will change) but, I just wanted to know if anyone would be interested in such a thing? Or would be interested in helping? I can do it by myself, but, help is always nice.

Reasons why this would be good:

- The larger a group is, the more information there is to keep track of. Depending on how organized you are, it could become disastrous.
- People don't like having 4589492 applications to have to download to 3457286 places to upload to.
- ^ This becomes truer the more groups you're in
- A central area to work

Anyways, at the moment I don't have any dates for if/when I'll start, I just want to know: Interested? Suggestions?


Last edited by irational at 12:57 am, Nov 23

Kaitentsuki
Post #577956
user avatar
Member

12:50 am, Nov 23 2012
Posts: 831


Well if you are going to do it then i have some ideas what could be added, not that i know how applications works. Could add a feature where scanlator group can name a project they are interested/are going to/doing which gets posted on some special area or something to prevent projects unintentionally clashing. Happens sometimes that groups do same project by pure accidents and to prevent it this could be a nice feature and could help with cooperation between scanlators.

irational
Post #577957 - Reply to (#577956) by Kaitentsuki
Member

12:54 am, Nov 23 2012
Posts: 24


Quote from Kaitentsuki
Well if you are going to do it then i have some ideas what could be added, not that i know how applications works. Could add a feature where scanlator group can name a project they are interested/are going to/doing which gets posted on some special area or something to prevent projects unintentional ...


Oh that'd be a good idea too

Joentjuh
Post #579536
user avatar
Member

5:50 pm, Dec 5 2012
Posts: 292


I've had this thought for a while no (but no ambition to actually act upon it), but wouldn't it be nice if there was an 'interactive' Manga reader/editor.

Think the way you watch movies, there are separate tracks for audio, video, and subtitles. Preferably these subtitles are in plain-text, but transparent layers are an easy alternative (yet more constrictive).

Meaning:
The scanned page itself is cleaned of has had all text removed
Scanlation groups release their translations as 'subtitles' (i.e. ASS) which can be loaded into the reader
The reader displays the the text at the correct places (either via direct positioning like with ASS, or inside pre-defined regions)
The user can then select a specific language (or even use machine translation).
You could even add some sort of footnote/dictionary feature (pre-defined or release only), this would make it unnecessary to add explanations for common words (i.e. the suffixes or food), since these are automatically provided if the user wishes it.

Heck, you could even take it a step further and allow for sequential panels or even the display speed of text (like in VNs)... maybe even audio effects where SFX text for good measure? bigrazz

The way I see it, this would enable the release of translated manga without actually distributing the manga (illegal).
A group can easily release in multiple languages without too much overhead (plain-text vs images)
The user can play around a bit with font-size, font-style, and colour (I have a preference for certain fonts)
And also, since the text is rendered in real-time, it should be much smoother (read: readable) than when saved in a rasterized image (often even rescaled).... I've seen my fair share of near illegible releases due to a combination of silly, small, fonts that are downscaled and saved in low quality.


Maybe even go so far as to form some sort of community around it, a cloud from which a user can choose 'subtitles'. Since the subtitles are stored on the cloud, when a user encounters an error it should be fairly easy to send it back (when the user has privileges to it)

-->
Group creates file, with some sort of versioning system behind it
Group adds 'maintainers' to said file
Maintainer loads file and starts adding/proof-reading text
- saves file back to cloud


Anyway, fairly crude but should not be all to hard to actually create something like this... The problem, as always, is getting people to actually use it (Which I see as not fairly likely, especially those that only want to read).

Last edited by Joentjuh at 5:59 pm, Dec 5

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eito
Post #579818
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Member

5:47 pm, Dec 8 2012
Posts: 11


Hi, generally the idea sure is great, even if it would need a high level flexibility actually; e.g. I don't want to see my scans availlable to anybody but group members - the owner of the said server would definitely have access though, right. Here we got a reason to use filehosters (as they are too big to care) or, better, an ftp. If you work on webraws, that's not an issue, obviously.
That's the first point, second would be that stuff should at best be a programm all groups can install on their own servers, on the one hand side to limit the burden on your server, on the other hand to make the whole thing more stable (back in the day silverado from MangaUnderground programmed about exactly what you are thinking about, now the server, and with it, the code are all gone). In this case all your server would need to have would be central database linking to the single groups, + maybe the hosting of groups stuff since ofc many small groups don't have servers etc.
Generally a good idea though smile

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irational
Post #582623 - Reply to (#579818) by eito
Member

6:34 pm, Jan 2 2013
Posts: 24


Goodness, this site isn't giving me updates anymore. Anyways, it's a long post so I apologize.

Quote from Joentjuh
I've had this thought for a while no (but no ambition to actually act upon it), but wouldn't it be nice if there was an 'interactive' Manga reader/editor.
[...]
The way I see it, this would enable the release of translated manga without actually distributing the manga (illegal).


What you propose sounds interesting for sure, however there's a tiny problem: a lot of scanlators don't want to work together and each groups methods and standards are different. So even if we have one cleaned page, one group (X) might complain that they want all of the SFX redrawn and to put their correct TL there. However, another group (Y) might not have translations for that so the cleaned page will be without SFX. (Yes you could fix that with layers but it's an example).

The problem then becomes: How do you standardize things like cleaning/redrawing/typesetting? Because, if you've ever used Photoshop's text tool, sometimes if you enter a paragraph it doesn't give the 'best' way to display the words. You have to add extra spaces, break words up at the correct positions, etc.

Well, all of this could, theoretically, be fixed by making a new file format and having groups upload that to the reader/editor.

As for the legal issues, this would (probably) fall under the distribution of manga. 'Distribution' isn't really limited to copies. If you publicly display something on the internet, you're distributing it. Sure, people may not be allowed to download it (at the beginning), but they can all see it whenever they want. Mmm.... think of it like a library? (I'm not an expert but I think the above is true)

Quote from eito
I don't want to see my scans availlable to anybody but group members - the owner of the said server would definitely have access though, right. Here we got a reason to use filehosters (as they are too big to care) or, better, an ftp. If you work on webraws, that's not an issue, obviously.


True, the owner/DBA would have access. Which is where contracts come in. Well, trust is also an issue too. (Unfortunately not everyone has moral standards.)

Quote from eito
second would be that stuff should at best be a programm all groups can install on their own servers, on the one hand side to limit the burden on your server, on the other hand to make the whole thing more stable (back in the day silverado from MangaUnderground programmed about exactly what you are thinking about, now the server, and with it, the code are all gone). In this case all your server would need to have would be central database linking to the single groups, + maybe the hosting of groups stuff since ofc many small groups don't have servers etc.


Mhm. It would be easy to install on other servers, well, if they have the space for it. It would also /kinda/ fix the above problem by letting the group be the DBA/owner and just leave it to me/creator to do maintenance if necessary. However, that would also kinda break the 'Indicate which projects groups are interested in to avoid clashing' although, there is probably a way around that.

And as for the group stuff, except for a public webpage (i.e. get a wordpress or something) all the forums and stuff would be handled by the application. If I really felt like it I could add the webpage stuff to it too. (But then you would need a domain name).


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