Spanish Translation  //  Traductor inglÚs-espa˝ol  //  Traduction franšais-espagnol

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04/29/06

Permalink 10:40:16 am, Categories: For translation buyers, Spanish language & translation, 137 words  

The Spanish language in the world

The Spanish language differs from one Spanish-speaking country to another, and there is much more to it than the reduction to the pair Castilian (European) Spanish/Latin American Spanish. Even within Latin America, Spanish has a distinctive touch in every Hispanic country. These differences reach a peak in casual oral language and tend to fade in written language, the more formal it gets. So in theory it is possible to write for a global Hispanic audience. This makes Spanish a very interesting language to invest your resources in as a multilingual company. A single translation can address more than 300 million native Spanish speakers in the world. No need to highlight the interesting ROI considerations this entails. This is of course only a brief and rough overview on the subject that I will be fine-tuning in upcoming posts.

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04/21/06

Permalink 09:53:41 am, Categories: For professional translators, 341 words  

A highly recommended resource for translators

If as a professional translator you aren't yet acquainted with Jost Zetzsche's Translator's Tool Box e-book (and the associated Tool Kit biweekly newsletter), I highly recommend you to fix this problem as soon as you possibly can. Here is what Jost has to say by way of introduction to his book:

"As a technical translator and localization consultant, I've been continually surprised at the lack of technical expertise and knowledge about software tools among many translators and project managers. I've seen countless hours wasted on tasks that could have been done automatically or in a fraction of the time. And as an editor, I've often struggled to improve texts that were translated with an adequate level of linguistic or subject-matter expertise, but whose quality was sub-par because the translator didn't know how to use the necessary tools or formats.

"At some point after it became common for translators to use computers for their work, it seems that many of us became convinced that we were really not smart (read: technical) enough to become proficient computer users. The irony is that many of us translate highly technical and complex subject matter every day. There is no lack of intelligence among us—merely a prevailing notsmart-enough-for-computers fallacy that we have bought into.

"It is time to adopt a new paradigm for our profession: Not only is it acceptable to use computers well—it is critical to our success."

So I believe that this resource will benefit any translator, whether you are starting out or you are already established in this industry. If it can just teach you one tip to work more efficiently with your computer and save 5-10 minutes a day, think of the aggregate impact this will have on your whole career! But for some of us, this book will save much more time than this. Not to mention improving the quality of our services on the technical front. A definitely recommendable (and affordable) investment for all of us professional translators!

See for yourself at The Translator's Tool Box. Enjoy your reading!

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04/10/06

Permalink 09:44:17 am, Categories: About JB Translations, For translation buyers, 310 words  

Triggering mental filters

If you are like me, you receive a lot of spam messages in your electronic mailbox. Some of these are hoaxes from people asking you to update your details on your PayPal or bank account in order to get access to these and steal your money. A fast scan of those messages is usually all that is needed to determine that they are not authentic. Why so? Because very often they contain quite a few grammar mistakes and misspellings, something that PayPal or your bank would never allow within their messages. The next thing you know, the delete key is pressed and that spam is sent where it belongs.

Grammar mistakes and misspellings not only help determine if an e-mail request is honest or not. They also help determine whether an entire company aligns with PayPal and your bank in seriousness and reliability or if they're just amateurish in their approach to business. You know by heart the "first impression" litany so I won't repeat it here. You probably care a lot about this in your original materials, but sometimes you can end up with translations that overlook this principle.

A rule of thumb would be that if you choose your translation providers first and foremost on pricing considerations, chances are you will end up with a translation that won't do your image justice. There are some authentic and valid ways to lower costs without lowering quality. Our formula entails offering our services on a freelance basis and applying translation memory technology. Other translation service providers may apply genuine alternative methods to bear costs down, but if a company goes below a reasonable price level, they most likely provide sub-standard translated material that will trigger the "amateurish" filter in your target audience's mind when they're considering your services. To the outcome that they will also press the mental delete key!

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04/05/06

Permalink 07:14:20 am, Categories: For professional translators, 281 words  

Why every translator should have a website (II)

Another way in which you should put your website to your advantage is when contacting translation providers to offer them your services. If the person who is considering your profile is like me, he or she will avidly want to see how good a writer you are in your native language, if you have an eye to detail and other things that sometimes can and sometimes can not be determined by just reading your CV or resume. Indeed, you can convince me to try you instead of somebody else with a stronger profile than yours if you show me that you master the art of writing and that you don't allow any mistakes on your website. Because if you do allow them on your own website, is there a chance that you will do a better job when writing for somebody else? Hardly. So have a website, make it error-proof and show a good writing style, and even if your design isn't exactly a work of art you will convince many prospective clients of your writing and translating skills. At least to give you a first try, and then you will have a chance to further convince them by delivering a quality job! Be remarkable and you will be noticed. Do not be ashamed of yourself when comparing your profile to that of a translator with 25 years of experience. Talent will always come to the surface if you add your will to it. Make yourself known, go the extra mile, show more of yourself than the others (instead of trying to hide what you think you don't have). Having a solid website will help you accomplish a big part of this.

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