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What makes a good, successful and happy translator: PART 2

In Part 1, I outlined the key attributes of a good translator. In this part I will attempt to outline what makes a translator successful: since talent alone is not enough.

I would also like to apologise for the delay in submitting this post. As the length probably indicates, it took quite a while to put together – even in terms of how to illustrate it. As I detail below, it is hard to put down a single definition of what is a successful translator or the single way to achieve it. I hope you appreciate the personal approach.
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Localization is not a word everyone knows!

Nothing thrills me more than to have one of our small or medium sized business clients find success in a non-English speaking market. International sales are not as easy to get as one may think, and working with business clients that want to win globally can be tricky. In fact, this past Friday night, at a dinner sponsored by a local Chamber, I found myself in a conversation around this very same topic. A friend of mine introduced me to an acquaintance of his, a businessman, somewhat tipsy, who became upset when he learned that I was part of a translation agency. He said to me, “the problem with translation is that it doesn’t work, it doesn’t help your product sell.” After a little probing, it seems that his company had recently sunk a large sum of money into translating the packaging of all of its products into another language, with the hope that this would make it popular in their target market. It did not. He stated that their return on investment was low, and that it may even fall back on his shoulders if sales did not pick up.
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The Danger with Translation and an Ethical Question

The Danger with Translation and an Ethical Question | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
The Guardian has an interesting article by former Granta editor Ian Jack about some translators who invented an Albanian author and had quite a bit of luck publishing their "translations" of him in English. As Jack reports it, they even got Time Out Scotland to declare him "'Albania's second greatest living writer' (after Ismail Kadare, later to win the Man Booker International prize)."
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Does Translation Management Really Exist? by Vladimir Pedchenko

It seems that it does. At least you see job ads like Translation Project Manager, Localization Coordinator, Translation Project Coordinator, Translation and Localization Project Manager.

All is clear with word artisan professions. Translators create written representations of reality in other language; interpreters build language bridges in real time. But what do translation project managers do? Are they like any other project managers, just co-ordinate the process of reaching the single goal by multiple people? Or is translation management really different?
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Medical translation - ForeignExchange Translations

Medical translation - ForeignExchange Translations | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Technology is becoming more and more prevalent in the field of translation as computer linguists become better at programming good grammar recognition. With the advent of technologies like Phrazer poised to replace translators in a clinical setting, and CAP tools becoming a reasonable replacement for human editors, it can be quite easy to think that in the future people won't be necessary for translations.
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How to Get Published as a Literary Translator: Contact the Author

Going straight to the source – the author – is an excellent approach to take. It can often be a shortcut to going the traditional route and may be an opportunity for both you and the author to consider self-publishing, but that’s not to say it doesn’t have its own inherent difficulties.

Let’s take a look at some of the hurdles you may face if you choose to take this route.

Contacting the Author
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Customers Want Website Translated

Customers Want Website Translated | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Last month, Eurobarometer released a study that examined how Europeans react to foreign-language content on the Internet. The results were clear: if you do business online and have an international clientele, translating your website could help you attract customers and may even increase sales.
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Potiche: English to French translation

Potiche: English to French translation | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
I went to see Potiche last weekend. I immediately felt for the subtitler, whose troubles started right at the title, because in this particular sense, the word potiche, as far as I know, has no equivalent in English.
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What types of incentives work best for you? by Corinne McKay

Especially when you work on your own, incentives can be an important part of succeeding in business (and in life, for that matter!). It’s important to figure out what kinds of incentives work for you, so that you can use them to advantage. For example, you might encounter some of the following types of incentives in your business (and, disclaimer, I’m not a social scientist, so I’m sort of making up names for these!):
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A New Theory of Social Media Management Localization

A New Theory of Social Media Management Localization | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Social Media Localization seems to have two different meanings. The first pertains to localizing benefits and promotions (through location-based social media channels) to consumers in different places to ensure they engage with your social media presence. The second, and probably closer to the intended definition of localization, is considering how your social media approach must change when engaging global audiences.
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Game localization tips: checking inline tags with Word and Excel

Game localization tips: checking inline tags with Word and Excel | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Working in games translation, sooner or later you are bound to find a file packed with inline tags. You know, those annoying non translatable things between <>, [], {} and similars.

You can come up with many ways to work around them during the translation, but at the end you will probably want 1) a version of the text without the damn things for proofreading and spellchecking 2) a quick way to check that they all are in the right place.
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How Does Localization Relate to Social Media?

Many companies use social media to get in direct contact with their customer base. This allows consumers to engage with each other as well as the product makers about their issues, concerns, recommendations or satisfaction with a product. This instant feedback approach has reshaped how companies deal with customers: feedback is instant.
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Alan Pauls: un tempo traduttore

Dopo l’ormai celebre definizione del traduttore come “autore invisibile”, proponiamo quella di Alan Pauls, scrittore argentino di cui le Edizioni Sur pubblicheranno Historia del pelo: i traduttori come “contrabbandieri di cultura”. Ne ha parlato alla Fiera di Francoforte dell’ottobre 2010. Di Alan Pauls sono stati pubblicati in Italia Il passato (Feltrinelli, 2007) e Storia del pianto (Fazi, 2009).
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Machines take center stage

Machines take center stage | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Static, dynamic and high value content use cases
A series of twelve machine translation (MT) use cases were crisply showcased at the recent TAUS Executive Forum in Barcelona. Together they provided a comprehensive overview of advanced user experiences among government, large enterprises and solution providers.

As MT quality continues to improve for user interfaces and technical publications, the leading edge of the market is turning its attention to new domains and applications for MT, such as user forums and online chat.
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Crowds, Clouds, Data and Innovation

Crowds, Clouds, Data and Innovation | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
The final session of the recent TAUS Executive Forum in Barcelona focused on innovative solutions using communities or data driven approaches.

Collaborative translation is a promising, new paradigm to leverage the power of community to translate and maintain dynamic content.

While automated workflow systems are not new, automation now spans the translation workflow end-to-end, including statistical sourcing and selection of translation resources. Innovative LSPs are capitalizing on the opportunity to connect clients and translators directly.
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What is Neutral Spanish?

What is Neutral Spanish? | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Many articles or blogs on language translation recommend localizing text to be as specific as possible for your locale. The Spanish language (possibly the world's third most widely spoken language) is often an exception, due to the broad audience of Spanish speakers spread over several countries and continents.

Most customers find that they have neither the budget nor the bandwidth to localize their content for each Spanish locale. It is very common for clients to have their translation company or translation agency translate source language content into what is commonly referred to as "neutral" Spanish. This type of Spanish is sometimes also referred to as "universal" or "standard" Spanish.
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The TV Industry as an Analogy for Translation

A decade ago, in the wake of phenomena such as low-budget box office smash The Blair Witch Project, business “visionaries” assured us that material produced by studios employing thousands of professionals would be eclipsed by user-generated content. You know, cats playing pianos, skateboarders banging their family jewels against hand rails, fat kids doing Sith warlord routines. Classic stuff. You know, the kind of stuff that inspired people such as Sergei Eisenstein and Stanley Kubrick.
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Cracking the code of machine translation

Ravi and his colleague Kevin Knight treat translation as a cryptographic problem, as if the foreign text were simply English written in an advanced cipher. Their software cracks the code by estimating the probability that a foreign word matches an English word based on the number of times it appears in the text - a frequently occurring word is more likely to mean "the" or "a" than "antidisestablishmentarianism".
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Quality Assurance, Localisation and Experience: The Perfect Combination for the Best Localisation (Part II) by Curri

Quality Assurance, Localisation and Experience: The Perfect Combination for the Best Localisation (Part II) by Curri | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
In my last post, I was explaining what a developer or publisher has to have into account when localising a game, and I also gave some of examples of games, whose developers or publishers have failed in reaching a good localisation. In this post, I will continue with those suggestions on game localisation.
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Confessions of a Conference Interpreter by Michelle Hof

Confessions of a Conference Interpreter by Michelle Hof | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
I would love to start this article with the words "Hi, my name's Michelle and I'm a conference interpreter," but I'm afraid that would prompt readers to want to start patting me on the back consolingly and proffering tissues. Although, come to think of it, maybe adopting a "True Confessions" tone in this article is not such a bad idea, since it would fit quite nicely with the topic I plan to address: professional identity as seen by a conference interpreter.
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Dictionary Of Ancient Akkadian Provides Glimpse Into Civilization’s Cradle

Dictionary Of Ancient Akkadian Provides Glimpse Into Civilization’s Cradle | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
The dictionary, which spans some 10,000 pages in 21 volumes, took no less than nine decades to complete. In the process, it outlived some of the nearly 100 scholars who devoted their careers to it.
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Crowdsourcing for Statistical Machine Translation, talk by Chris Callison-Burch and Omar Zaidan (Johns Hopkins University)

Modern approaches to machine translation are data-driven. Statistical translation models are trained using parallel text, which consist of sentences in one language paired with their translation into another language. One advantage of statistical translation models is that they are language independent, meaning that they can be applied to any language that we have training data for. Unfortunately, for most of the world's languages, do not have sufficient amounts of training data.
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Language Isn't A Firehose: James Joyce And The Future of Computerized Translation (Bloomsday Edition)

Language Isn't A Firehose: James Joyce And The Future of Computerized Translation (Bloomsday Edition) | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Nearly 100 years after Joyce wrote his seminal polyglot work, are we any closer to a technological solution to breaking down the barriers of language? Not if the recent scuffle over Google Translate is any indication.
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A new secret language

A new secret language | Lexicool.com Web Review | Scoop.it
Mox is a young but well translator. Two PhDs, six languages... and he hardly earns the minimum wage.
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10 strategies to expand your translation business: Part 6

This is the sixth post in a ten-part series providing information on ten different strategies for staying competitive and growing your translation business.

Sixth strategy: Staying abreast of industry news and trends
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