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Poll: Have you ever worked on a translation that required no research in Google or a dictionary?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 05:04
SITE STAFF
Mar 12, 2012

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Have you ever worked on a translation that required no research in Google or a dictionary?".

This poll was originally submitted by Cathy Przybylski. View the poll results »



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Mary Worby  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:04
Member
German to English
+ ...
Many times Mar 12, 2012

Many translations are, thankfully, very straightforward. And extensive TMs often make dictionaries or internet research unnecessary.

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:04
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes Mar 12, 2012

Google came out in 1998 (I know because I googled it) and I was translating before that. My first ever laptop would now be a museum piece, with Windows 3.0.

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xxxInterlangue
Angola
Local time: 14:04
English to French
+ ...
Yes Mar 12, 2012

...unless you consider birth certificates and some other 10-line jobs are not translations

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Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 21:04
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Yes Mar 12, 2012

neilmac wrote:
My first ever laptop would now be a museum piece, with Windows 3.0.


I was ecstatic when I got my first 8-bit micro which ran on - wait for it - CP/M, which is really out of the arc.

In those days, even though translators had to arm themselves with paper dictionaries (gasp!), I often got work that was atrociously simple and could do in the bat of an eyelid without thinking.

Ah, the good old days

Happy translating!


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John Cutler  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:04
Spanish to English
+ ...
Specialization Mar 12, 2012

Yes, all the time now with one of my direct clients. I've been working for them for years and many of the documents I do these days don't contain anything new.

I probably used Google and dictionaries to look up terms for them a long time ago, but really don't need to at this point

Oh the joys of specialization!


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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:04
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Maybe once in 40 years Mar 12, 2012

At the very least, I have used dictionaries throughout my career for suggested alternatives, even when I thoroughly understood the meaning. My favorite dictionaries and online sites are the ones that provide tons of alternatives, so that I can find the exact nuance I'm looking for.

Once, when I was working at a conference, the box of dictionaries got lost. We were surprised at how well we did.


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Oliver Lawrence  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 14:04
Partial member (2008)
Italian to English
+ ...
Some 'jobs' are just a few words ... Mar 12, 2012

... and you wouldn't insist on looking something up just for the sake of it.

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Marjolein Snippe  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 14:04
Member (2012)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Yes Mar 12, 2012

Some very short, straightforward translations.

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Michal Surmař  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 14:04
Member (2010)
English to Czech
+ ...
Some creative marketing translations ... Mar 12, 2012

... with (almost) no research but a lot of thinking and transcreation.

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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 14:04
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Probably yes... Mar 12, 2012

Without Google definitely, in the days before it was much use.
Then I alway preferred AltaVista, RIP!

Many of my jobs are small, ongoing 'stories' for regular clients, and do not require a lot of research, because I already know the client and background well.

Others - typically for tourist guides and the like - can be very lightweight, but here I do try to catch individual details, so all the restaurants in a town do not simply serve good food in cosy surroundings with a wonderful view. And that often means googling them first...

That said, tourist gides can be extremely difficult - I will never forget a museum guide about boatbuilding and pioneering self-righting lifeboats. It was more than ten years ago, so the Net was not much help at best, and even now the highly specialised terminology would be a challenge!

I could almost claim to have done that without Google and dictionaries - they were simply not adequate! I read up in encyclopædias and asked the client for most of the terminology.

But I tend to check and double check almost everything. Either jobs call for precisely the right shade of meaning, so I DO check in the bilingual and monolingual in one or both languages, and/or the thesaurus.

For other jobs the terminology MUST be correct, so I check, even when I think I know...
I also google or thumb through reference books to see the term in context and get the collocations right...


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Jessica Noyes  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:04
Spanish to English
+ ...
current slang Mar 12, 2012

I recently took a job that used expressions that are not in most dictionaries, or even Google, at least in their context! It was a law-enforcement transcript of a discussion among some Mexican underworld characters.
Luckily, the Mexican branch of our family includes a young adult who, thanks to current media, is up to date on this kind of language, and she was able to help me make sense of some of the more arcane constructions.
The rest of the language was quite simple, of course.


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Denise DeVries  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:04
Spanish to English
+ ...
I used a manual typewriter and enormous paper dictionaries! Mar 12, 2012

And don't even get me started on the invention of Witeout!
Denise


Julian Holmes wrote:

neilmac wrote:
My first ever laptop would now be a museum piece, with Windows 3.0.


I was ecstatic when I got my first 8-bit micro which ran on - wait for it - CP/M, which is really out of the arc.

In those days, even though translators had to arm themselves with paper dictionaries (gasp!), I often got work that was atrociously simple and could do in the bat of an eyelid without thinking.

Ah, the good old days

Happy translating!


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Cristina Heraud-van Tol  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 07:04
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes Mar 12, 2012

With texts that contain everyday vocabulary. Even with some legal, medical and technical texts that contain terms that I have previously translated and that I remember perfectly.

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patriciacharnet  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:04
English to French
+ ...
yes Mar 12, 2012

frequently I get these assignments - but sometimes part of a document is outside my main specialties, and that's when the fun begins!

[Edited at 2012-03-12 16:42 GMT]


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Poll: Have you ever worked on a translation that required no research in Google or a dictionary?

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