I'm an electronics hobbyist, so I'm no stranger to iffy machine translations from Chinese to English in datasheets and marketing materials. However, today I came across something that I'm not sure can be explained by a machine translation error.
This RJ45 connector part is produced by a Zhongshan-based manufacturer, and comes with the following description:
RJ45 RJReceptacle 1 Internal oscillator included Plugin Ethernet Connectors/Modular Connectors (RJ45 RJ11) ROHS
The phrase that surprised me here is "internal oscillator included".
If you're unfamiliar with electronics, RJ45 connectors are the type used for most wired networks. This part is a connector that solders into a PCB so you can plug a network cable (e.g. Cat5) into it. The part has a metal shroud and a pair of LEDs built in for status lights. The part also has integrated magnetics, i.e. a set of tiny transformer coils that magnetically couple the signal from the wire to the pins on the connector, to provide galvanic isolation.
There is no situation in which a connector like this would contain an oscillator, nor anything like an oscillator, and oscillators are not a class of circuit that one would usually associate with RJ45. This connector definitely does not contain an oscillator. If electronics isn't your wheelhouse, you'll just have to trust me that this is bizarre enough to be worthy of catching attention.
I tried doing some forward-and-back translations using machine translators, to see if I could get them to cough up the word "oscillator", but words like "magnetics", "transformer", "galvanic isolation", "coil", etc. all translated cleanly in both directions.
Initially I thought this might be a one-off mistake, but looking through listings for other similar parts I see the same "internal oscillator" phrase reused in quite a few others - 276 different parts from a range of different manufacturers, including western ones. The datasheet (PDF) for the part linked above has no mention of oscillators. LCSC, the distributor, is Shenzhen-based, so my guess is that someone there did the translation and introduced this strange phrase.
To be 100% clear: there is not an oscillator in this part. This is an error in LCSC's description.
Is there a linguistic explanation for the inclusion of this odd phrase? Perhaps a similarity in written form with one of the other common terms I mentioned above, resulting in it being misread by a non-technical translator? Or is it simply more likely that someone fat-fingered a copy paste from a translation job?
Update: A theory someone suggested is that the phrase might have arisen from the concept of the status LEDs flashing or blinking, if the Chinese words for "flashing lights" or "flashing indicators" has some commonality with the word for "oscillator".
Second update: LCSC have a separate Chinese language website. It sells the same parts - here's the same connector part: https://item.szlcsc.com/174889.html - but the website layout is totally different, and I can't read Chinese, so I've got no idea which part of that page is the part description (if it even has one).