#SmartReads on the Translation Industry 1-2018.
During the Christmas break, I took some time to write a couple of documents. They were meant initially for my clients, but after feedback from some colleagues, I’ve decided to make them widely available.
First of all, I put together a Cheat Sheet on translation project management because, despite today’s most sophisticated translation management systems, it still pays to take the basics into account. You can download the Cheat Sheet here.
Also, in the last four years I have been giving webinars and workshops on terminology, CAT tools, machine translation and post-editing for translators. I always try to anticipate any possible questions, but in few cases I was caught by surprise. It won’t happen again. 🙂 I collected the answers to the most meticulous questions I received in a document with the title Did you know that…?.
Do you believe in translation niches? Me, not so much. I think there are a few direct clients who are willing to pay a reasonable rate for translation services, but sooner or later most companies will want to save money. I do believe in diversification, though, i.e. offering various language-related services, and in differentiation, i.e. offering various levels of service, for example for translation projects. Do you want to read more about it? Download Being cheap is not enough and let me know what you think.
A Decade in the History of the Translation Industry
Two books about the last decade of the translation industry caught my eye lately. The first, Translation Matters, is a collection of articles and notes written by Jost Zetzsche centered mainly around the various aspects and issues faced by translators. The second book – available in various formats (almost) for free – is by consultant Luigi Muzii and it’s titled Upstream: The everyday observation of the translation industry from an overly critical standpoint. Both volumes provide much needed food-for-thought on language, translation technology, innovation etc., because, let’s be honest, sometimes we need to dwell in the past a little longer to get the future right.
Translation Tech Stuff
Here are some articles and videos on (translation) technology I’ve been reading and watching lately.
– A great fast-paced presentation by Kris Hammond on the challenges artificial intelligence (AI) experts still have to tackle when it comes to language. Hammond talks about the stories behind Big Data, the automatic generation of narrative content and other riveting (as well as scary) developments.
– Want to use Amazon’s Machine Translation, but don’t know where to start? Read this short techy article on the three available options.
– With Neural Machine Translation (NMT) still being a “hype”, times are exciting and confusing at the same time. Here are two articles from Kirti Vashee’s EMpTY Pages blog to add to your own excitement or confusion:
Antonio Toral, Literary Text: What Level of Quality can Neural MT Attain?
Laura Casanellas, 2018: Machine Translation for Humans
– Gábor Ugray, Kilgray’s co-founder, has a blog definitely worth exploring, Jealous Markup. Gábor writes engrossing articles on (translation) technology and other topics, like his latest Blockchain as translation’s new foundational technology (read carefully :-).
Best of Times, Worst of Times: Lexicographers Still Know How to Have Fun
The S*H*-word was all over the Internet at the beginning of January, which gave lexicographers a good reason to call a party and write few entertaining articles. Kory Stamper (Merriam-Webster) explained why lexicographers need our profanities, while Ben Zimmer, language columnist for The Wall Street Journal, wrote about the very first instance of the use of the S*H*-word. In case you’re interested in the use of curse words and the like, go visit Strong Language, a blog with great contributors.
More language-related articles: Again from Ben Zimmer, Putting the Kibosh on an Old Riddle: The Source of the Phrase; on the BBC website, Ann Babe writes about South Korean grammar as the essence of a culture; and on the Nautilus website you’ll find an article on why red means red in almost every language.