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Looking for a glossary english-spanish of chemical formulae
Thread poster: Joanna Garcia

Joanna Garcia
Local time: 19:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
Sep 24, 2004

I am looking for a glossary english-spanish of chemical formulae.
I am translating a document about research on DNA and I have hundreds of formulae that I can't post in Kudoz (considering they are so many)
Please help!

Thanks,

JO

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2004-09-25 18:34]


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Gilberto Lacchia  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 01:35
English to Italian
+ ...
Try ChemID Sep 25, 2004

It is not a glossary, but a database of chemical substances by the National Library of Medicine. Under "Names and Synonyms" many times you can find a translation in different languages (often Spanish).

It is available in a standard and in a lite version. The last one is the most practical for the translator needs:

http://chem.sis.nlm.nih.gov/chemidplus/chemidlite.jsp

If you would like to know more about searching this and other chemical resources, take a look at my recently published article on Caduceus (the newsletter of the ATA Medical Division)

Toxicology and Chemical Resources, Caduceus, pp. 23-26
http://www.ata-divisions.org/MD/Caduceus_2004Summer.pdf

Good luck,
Gilberto


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Gilberto Lacchia  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 01:35
English to Italian
+ ...
CAS N. search / Fichas Internacionales de Seguridad Química Sep 25, 2004

Hi, it's me again

A useful technique to find chemical names is the use of the international classification number (CAS #).

All the chemicals listed in ChemID have this number (the RN number under the name of the substance). For chemicals found on ChemID without a Spanish translation, you may use this number on Google, looking for Spanish pages.

E.g.
For Ammonium bichromate you find an Italian, French, German and Dutch translation, but not a Spanish one.
The CAS number is 7789-09-5: using it on Google (within quotes) let you quickly find the Spanish translation (Dicromato de amonio)

http://tinyurl.com/4dfqz

Another very useful multilingual site is

International Chemical Safety Cards
http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/ipcs/icstart.html

In the Spanish version

Fichas Internacionales de Seguridad Química
http://www.mtas.es/insht/ipcsnspn/spanish.htm

you can find hundreds of chemicals (listed by name, synonym, CAS number, etc.).

HTH

Gilberto


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Ruxi
German to Romanian
+ ...
Question Sep 25, 2004

Dear Jo_Chile,

Why did you accept to translate in this field if you know it so little?
Be careful, DNA research is a very delicate field and connected to medicine or criminality, so if there are translation mistakes they could lead to great problems.
Maybe you don't find any other job, or there are not enough experts in chemistry in this languages?
I don't want to hurt you, but just take care.
I don't work on these languages, so I can not be your competitor but it shows how unfair life is.
Some people get work whithout any problem, some others receive only critics ("you are not native speaker, you are not...,you don't have...).
Actually I read this thread because I was interested to find some ideas for dictionaries for Chemistry.Reading your question I remembered my pain that I can not find translation jobs on my languages and experience (including Chemistry).

Good luck,
Ruxi


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Joanna Garcia
Local time: 19:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Chemistry glossary Sep 27, 2004

Dear Gilberto,

Thank you very much for the information.
I will check them out and I'll let you know.

Thanks for your support.

Kind regards,

Joanna


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Joanna Garcia
Local time: 19:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Chemistry Glossary Sep 27, 2004

Dear Ruxi,

Thank you for your comments.
I agree with most of your opinions, but I think that when we face a document there is always something new.
The fact of not knowing the chemical formulae does not imply that I know little about the subject, though I must recognize this is not my field, I ussually work on mining and mechanics.
The document had a very flexible deadline, so the client gave all the facilities for me and my partners to find out and have meetings with the experts. Though I have this advantage, I wouldn't like to get there with so many questions.
I will check out the sites of the other answers and I could let you know the progress on my research.
Regarding your comment, in fact there aren't many translators in Chile specialized on Chemistry or Molecular Biology, so many times the translators involved in technical subjects have to deal with the broad variety of technical issues, going, for example, from environment to mechanics.

Kind regards,

Joanna


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charlesink
Local time: 20:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
Agree Sep 27, 2004

Ruxi wrote:

Dear Jo_Chile,

Why did you accept to translate in this field if you know it so little?
Be careful, DNA research is a very delicate field and connected to medicine or criminality, so if there are translation mistakes they could lead to great problems.
Maybe you don't find any other job, or there are not enough experts in chemistry in this languages?
I don't want to hurt you, but just take care.
I don't work on these languages, so I can not be your competitor but it shows how unfair life is.
Some people get work whithout any problem, some others receive only critics ("you are not native speaker, you are not...,you don't have...).
Actually I read this thread because I was interested to find some ideas for dictionaries for Chemistry.Reading your question I remembered my pain that I can not find translation jobs on my languages and experience (including Chemistry).

Good luck,
Ruxi


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Sarah Downing  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:35
German to English
+ ...
Don't Jump the Gun! Sep 27, 2004

[quote]Jo_Chile wrote:


The fact of not knowing the chemical formulae does not imply that I know little about the subject, though I must recognize this is not my field, I ussually work on mining and mechanics.

Ruxi et al.,

I think we come across new stuff all the time and I find it a bit unfair to make assumptions about someone's knowledge of a field when they haven't even said anything about this. I do believe that you should have a basic understanding of a subject before translating it, but to be quite honest I ocassionally get bombarded by agencies wanting me to do topics I don't feel comfortable with - they know this but often have problems finding someone else, so they ask me and I often end up saying yes. However, I make sure I do the research and let them know what I'm not sure about, so that they can ask the end customer if necessary. Also, I sometimes get projects with which I am vaguely but not 100% familiar, however I still feel up to translating them because I have wonderful resources on the Internet, which include specialist websites and colleagues (although I do keep my number of kudoz questions to a minimum) because you can find out a hell of a lot on the web.


Good luck Jo!

Sarah


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Joanna Garcia
Local time: 19:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Research for translations Sep 27, 2004

I can see that from a simple question a whole ethical issue came up.

The fact is that how are you supposed to get experience on a subject if you reject the documents because you don't have experience? Or are we supposed to only translate the subjects that we know? It would take ages to become an expert on subjects and thus be prepared to translate a technical document.
Of course, in my case, there are documents that I definetely do not accept because they are far from my fields, but if the client is aware of this situation and offers all the support, would you anyway reject it? This is the case exposed by Sarah, and I think that most of all would eventually accept it.
If we have a professional background, meaning university degrees, we are in theory prepared to find the sources and we have the necessary skills to find a solution to the terminology.

Anyway, and going back to the original question, I found that the most useful tool is to find the CAS number of the chemical compund and then search in google in Spanish. The advantage is that this method can be used in all languages.

Thank you for all your comments, opinions, questions and information.

Kind regards,

JO

P.S: I would love to continue with this discussion because it is really interesting to know your opinion about the ethical issue.


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Ruxi
German to Romanian
+ ...
Advice I got on ProZ Sep 28, 2004

I once received in forums on ProZ some advice and this is why I reacted like this.
Usually I am a person ready to try everything and I also know I can do many things regarding translations.
I was adviced not to accept jobs if I don't know the field or I am not a native speaker of the destination language.
If I am not wrong Sarah told me something about native languages and not trying to think to get a job if I am not native.
All those "kind" advice hurt me.
I think the only way to get a job is to try and to be tested. You have to see if you can do it and the outsourcer has to test you to make sure you are able to do it right.Other things are ridiculous and without sense.
Then there are also the conditions of the market. Jo_Chile said in her country there are not many translators, so it is an opportunity for her to receive many jobs even if not in her experience field.
For some languages there are few translators and a lot of jobs, for the others it is vice-versa.
It also depends on the country, because many outsourcers do not search translators abroad. Otherwise they would find a lot of translators for En-Es from different countries, even here on ProZ.
It was not a critic for Jo-Chile. I tried to understand the different aspects who made her accept that job.
It is not me who discourage here people.
In my opinion everybody has the right to search and receive work on his languages and experience, even if not native speaker.
Now the fields and experience are a problem. Many are very difficult, with a special language. You have to study them, at least a little, to get familiar with the terms.
In Chemistry it is not only a matter of formulae, but also the procedures, the equipments a.s.o.
One has to make sure he/she knows the subject, otherwise it is a long and difficult work and the results are not so good.
Many people (translators), like me, are looking for jobs and they really would accept everything to work, but there are limits.
I would never accept juridical or financial (economics) texts. They are to difficult and specific.
Always remember everything is connected with the market, when giving advice or making critics.
There are languages and fields which are not needed or ignored, others have to many offers.
Opportunities must be used, but within limits.

Ruxi


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