What’s in a name?
Don’t be alarmed if a translator working from Japanese to English asks you how to pronounce (or read) a personal or place name. This isn’t a sign that they lack basic knowledge of the language, but rather a comment on how complex Japanese names can be. The Japanese themselves do the same thing – even […]Read more
Does it realy matter?
So what if there are some spelling mistakes on your site, or your brochure reads like a translation? People are here to buy products and services, not act as judges for an English competition. But they judge anyway. How do you decide whether to trust someone you’ve never met before? You listen to what they have […]Read more
Work with a specialist
What do you do? Find a translator who knows. Think of something you know nothing about. Could you write about it? Even in your native language? Who would you hire to write the material you need translated? An engineer? A chemist? An advertising expert? Translation is the same. Speaking another language doesn’t give any special […]Read more
The true cost of low prices
That’s a quote from the president of ATA at the Interpret America conference, and it struck a chord with me. It encapsulates something that I’ve been trying to tease out recently when it comes to how much to pay for translation. It sounds like a ridiculously simple question, but what is the relationship between quality […]Read more
What is the difference between translation and localisation?
Although the words are often used interchangeably, localisation covers a wider scope than translation. Translation turns content from one language into another (e.g. Japanese into English). Localisation identifies and resolves cultural issues present in the content (religion, politics, etc.) adapts content to reflect differences in numbering systems, address formatting conventions and the like concentrates on […]Read more
What are source and target languages?
The source language is the language being translated from. The target language is the language being translated into. For example, I work from Japanese to English, so my source language is Japanese and my target language is English. I work from source documents in Japanese and turn them into target documents in English.Read more
What is transcreation?
Transcreation involves transforming material from one language for use in another language and culture. It most often applies to creative areas such as marketing, copywriting, fiction and computer games, where material created for one culture needs to be interpreted to be more suitable for another. For example, cultural references or wordplay can rarely be translated […]Read more
What is sight translation?
Sight translation involves reading a written text in one language silently, and simultaneously speaking the content aloud in another language. For example, a legal firm may ask a Japanese to English translator to sight translate parts of Japanese documents, speaking the content aloud in English so they can identify what the documents are and whether […]Read more
What is the difference between translation and interpreting?
Both translation and interpreting involve working between two languages, but there are important differences. Translation is for the written word (documents, web sites, etc.) is asynchronous (text is written, then translated) is normally done independently of the document author, often from a separate location uses online and printed reference materials. Interpreting is for the spoken […]Read more