10 Minute Biographies - Chapter 1 (Absolute Beginner Book Club)

Where is the link to the book ?

Got em’ at the bottom of the original post found here

p. 17

my translation

dot, dash. The signals get quickly tapped.
However, only tapping the usual signals was not satisfying.
Edison was thinking.
“Using this mechanism of the telegraph, couldn’t I invent something useful…?”


Just reading the first page and I already encountered new grammar points. Thanks for the breakdown of 知りたがりや, @2000kanji and @NicoleRauch. I also don’t recall ever using ころ but that seems like a useful point to know. Thought I’d mention this just to reinforce that it’s helpful to ask any questions.

I know I leaned heavily on using ichi.moe last time so I’m hoping my current knowledge can carry me through. I’ve already had to use jisho a few times though. The only embarrassing one was having to check あたためる since I didn’t recognize the reading. Kanji is a useful crutch but I really want to be able to recall words from their readings as much as possible. It seems necessary if there’s any hope to ever speak the language.


My translation of p. 17


Dot, dash. He is tapping the signals fast.
But only tapping signals couldn’t satisfy him.
Edison was thinking:
„If I use this telegraphy system wouldn’t it be possible to invent something convenient …“


My translation of p. 17

dot…dash . He tapped the signal quickly.

けれども、ただ 信号を 打つだけでは、まんぞくできませんでした。
However, just tapping a signal was not satisfying.

Edison thought about this.

「この 電信の 仕組みを つかえば 、何か べんりな ものが 発明できるんじゃないか………」
“If I use the construction of this telegraph, would I not be able to invent something more convenient?”

My question today is for line number 2 and 4, the verbs ending in a conjugated form of 出来る.
Could line two not have ended in 満足じゃなかったです?

As always, thank you!

Edit: I’ll start adding something I’ve learned in my posts as well, today it was the conditional form ~ば . Never encountered it before.


I don’t think so (but prepared to be corrected!) - 満足 is a noun, here used as a suru verb meaning “to satisfy”. できる is the potential form of する, and so the phrase means “wasn’t able to satisfy”.

満足じゃなかったです would just mean - “wasn’t satisfaction”.


I did not know this, thank you, will put this down in my notes.

p. 18

my translation

During his breaks at work, Edison made many experiments.
Taking notes for six years, night after night, …, his notebook was filled with notes on insights and ideas.
“I need more time. Alright, I decided!”
Edison decided to go to New York.
At the age of twenty-two, without money or baggage, it was a challenge.
After Edison arrived in New York, he invented an appliance that used the mechanism of the telegraph to inform many people at the same time of the price of gold and stocks.


translation p. 18

In spare moments at work Edison repeated his experiments over and over again.
Night after night, while he took notes for six years … his notebooks filled with notes of insights and ideas.
„I need more time. Alright, it’s decided!“
Edison decided to go to New York.
He was twenty-two, had neither money nor baggage, it was a challenge.
When Edison had arrived in New York he used the telegraphy system and invented a machine that informed many people at the same time about the prices of gold and stock etc.


My attempt at p. 18

しごとの 合間に、エジソンは じっけんを かさねました 。
During work breaks, he would do experiments over and over

毎ばん、毎ばん、メモを とりながら 六年間……、ノートは、ひらめきや アイヂアの メモで いっぱいに、なりました。
He took notes night after night for a period of six years. His notebook was full of insights and ideas.

「もっと 時間が はしいな。 よし、きめた !」
“I need more time. Alright I have made up my mind”

エジソンは、ニューヨークへ 行こうと きめました。
Edison decided to go to New York

二十二さい、お金も にもつも もたない、ちょいせんでした。
At 22 years old, it was a challenge with not much money or luggage

ニューヨークに ついた エジソンは、電信の 仕組みを つかい、金や 株の ねだんを、同時に 多くの 人に 知らせる きかいを 発明しました。
After he arrived in New York, Edison invented a machine that used the telegraph mechanism to inform a lot of people at the same time of the price of gold and stocks.

This was a tough one, especially the last sentence. The japanese sentence structure still confuses me but I am getting the hang of it slowly haha.


Question for you guys, for the first sentence on page 19:
これは、銀行や 会社で はたらく 人に とても よろこばれました。

I understand the word, but the sentence doesn’t make sense to me unless これは can mean “the”.
As in The bank and company workers were delighted!

Thanks guys!

Edit: Ah, just understood that it translate to “This was”, so This was greatly appreciated by bank and company workers.

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p. 19

my translation

This was very much appreciated by people working in banks and companies.
“I will continue making things wanted by everyone.”
There were many inventors who did calculations alone and silently at their desk, but Edison was different.

stock quotation display device


I had a bit trouble with this one and translated it like this:

Speaking of inventors, there were many who seem like they alone and in silence were making calculations at their desk, but Edison was different.

I wasn’t really sure how to translate ような.


Would どんどん be translated into “continue”? Having a bit of an issue with that word to make the sentence come together…


I translated it that way too, to me this makes most sense in this context.

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It usually means something like “rapidly” or “in succession”: https://jisho.org/search/どんどん

So you could translate it with “continue”, I guess, but I’d probably translate it like “I will quickly make…” or “I will continuously make…” or “I will make more and more things …” or something instead, to emphasize the quick succession he’s aiming at.


Makes sense, thank you, here is my p. 19 attempt:

これは、銀行や 会社で はたらく人に とても よろこばれました。
This was much appreciated by the bank and company workers.

「みんなが ほしい ものを どんどん 作るぞ。」
“I will continue to make more and more things everyone needs”

発明家と いえば、一人で だまって つくえの、 上で 計算を しているような、
人が、多かったのですが、エジソンは ちがいました 。
Speaking of inventors, a lot of them sat alone and silent by their desks and did calculations, but Edison was different


Is it too early for p.20 questions?

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I don’t think so, but it would be nice to blur spoilers. :v: