Poll: What is your most important resource while translating?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 07:38
SITE STAFF
Oct 14, 2005

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What is your most important resource while translating?".

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A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:38
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Missing option. Oct 14, 2005

Actually, my most important resource while translating is MYSELF, my mind, my knowledge, my experience, my own skills. Dictionaries and other stuff are just help, but not the MAIN resource. That option was missing in this poll.
Best,
Walter

[Edited at 2005-10-14 16:07]


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Karolina Katsika
Local time: 16:38
French to Greek
+ ...
It depends on the kind of text Oct 14, 2005

For ex., I find Eurodicautom very useful for EU terminology, but not useful at all for psychoanalyses terminology.

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Marianela Melleda  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 12:38
English to Spanish
+ ...
Proz.com term search Oct 14, 2005

This is my main resource and it was not mentioned in the options, since "Kudoz" means that you post questions (and I seldom do it). If in doubt, I usually find the best answer within http://www.proz.com/search/, which is of utmost value to me.

On the other hand, even though I agree with Walter that our main resource is our experience, knowledge, etc., I assume it is so too obvious to mention it, since the question is directed to professional translators.

Marianela Melleda


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:38
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Misunderstanding Oct 14, 2005

Marianela Melleda wrote:

This is my main resource and it was not mentioned in the options, since "Kudoz" means that you post questions (and I seldom do it). If in doubt, I usually find the best answer within http://www.proz.com/search/, which is of utmost value to me.

Marianela Melleda


Hi, MM,

KUDOZ refers to Kudoz Glossaries, which is what you use, it seems.

Marianela Melleda wrote:
On the other hand, even though I agree with Walter that our main resource is our experience, knowledge, etc., I assume it is so too obvious to mention it, since the question is directed to professional translators.

Marianela Melleda


Then, it should have been posted as "main help", not "main resource", I think.

Best,
Walter Landesman


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Heidi C  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:38
English to Spanish
+ ...
A bit of concern... Oct 14, 2005

For language problems, I prefer traditional dictionaries (in electronic or paper form) published by reputable sources.

For terminology, I basically use searches in the internet to find electronic dictionaries or specialized sources.


The Internet and search engines are a wonderful tool for translators. They allow us to save time and money by not having to go to libraries and differet places to consult (or buy) dicitionaries. They provide us with documents we would have never even considered consulting.

But my concern here is that I have noticed that a lot of translators are using ONLY search engines, guessing what the expression or term could be in the target language and checking how many hits they get...

It is really important to verify ANYTHING you find on the Internet. You have to go to the sources, check who wrote them, where they were written, read and grade the use of language in the document, and cross verify in other sources, compare with other options, preferably at professional sites or sites belonging to an organization that seems you can trust in.

It is easy to forget that not because something has been published it is correct, and not because you get a lot of hits it is correct!!! There is a lot of trash on the Internet, a lot of documents translated by translation programs, a lot of stuff written by people who are just making up the terms as they write them or who are just guessing.


Even paper dictionaries have some mistakes and sometimes their suggestion has to be verified elsewhere (my dictionaries, starting with Simon & Shuster, are full of penciled in corrections, additions, clarifications and suggestions). And one supposes that the cost alone will make any publishing house make sure that they are selling the best product possible. Imagine all the mistakes and trash available in electronic publishing, which costs nothing (or almost nothing), which is instant and accessible to anyone (even pranksters-how do you know the "scientific" site you are quoting was not written by two teenagers having fun?)

Sorry this ended up so long... But I am really passionate about verifying your sources and the "dangers" of just using electronic sources...


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xxxBrandis
Local time: 16:38
English to German
+ ...
I go perfectly with brigande additionally Oct 14, 2005

use all paper, electronic, kudoz or glossaries being offered by companies like SAP, Siemens etc., + my own TMs I have developed a small tool for this purpose which runs parallelly to word while translatind and is not a template like trados and lists various alternatives and their origin, which is very good for this. Normally one tends to be less critical towards a chosen word or a suggested term by the TM or other resources as they are already available and there is atleast only one in the box and less of alternatives. This gives me a leverage about building an opinion about which resouce is the best on the long run and also most reliable. But no resource is really the best, the background story and the nature of the document are still the best choices primarily to reach for an alternative in that sense. Best regards, Brandis

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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:38
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Agree Oct 14, 2005

Heidi:) wrote:

For language problems, I prefer traditional dictionaries (in electronic or paper form) published by reputable sources.

For terminology, I basically use searches in the internet to find electronic dictionaries or specialized sources....But my concern here is that I have noticed that a lot of translators are using ONLY search engines, guessing what the expression or term could be in the target language and checking how many hits they get...
It is really important to verify ANYTHING you find on the Internet. You have to go to the sources, check who wrote them, where they were written, read and grade the use of language in the document, and cross verify in other sources, compare with other options, preferably at professional sites or sites belonging to an organization that seems you can trust in.
...There is a lot of trash on the Internet, a lot of documents translated by translation programs, a lot of stuff written by people who are just making up the terms as they write them or who are just guessing
...Imagine all the mistakes and trash available in electronic publishing, which costs nothing (or almost nothing), which is instant and accessible to anyone (even pranksters-how do you know the "scientific" site you are quoting was not written by two teenagers having fun?)
But I am really passionate about verifying your sources and the "dangers" of just using electronic sources...


You are right! Fully agree with you.

Walter Landesman


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JackieMcC
Local time: 16:38
French to English
Others ... Oct 14, 2005

Yes, I totally agree with Heidi too.
I tend to rely on my own personal glossaries / database / research notes that I have built up over the past 15 or so years. At times in the past I have been too busy rushing to meet mad deadlines that I've not added new terms to my glossary and have always really kicked myself the next time that term comes up and I have to do all the research again as I can't remember what I decided on !
Now, I make a real effort to add terms as I discover them, or when I finish a job.
Jackie


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Alison Schwitzgebel
France
Local time: 16:38
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Exactly Oct 14, 2005

Walter Landesman wrote:

Actually, my most important resource while translating is MYSELF, my mind, my knowledge, my experience, my own skills. Dictionaries and other stuff are just help, but not the MAIN reource. That option was missing in this poll.
Best,
Walter


That's just what I was going to say. My knowledge of the subject matter (especially when translating financial texts) is a must-have!

Alison


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 12:38
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Thank you! Oct 14, 2005

Thank you very much, Alison!

Walter

[Edited at 2005-10-14 16:09]


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:38
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Depends on the language Oct 14, 2005

Some (like the one I'm working into now, Tagalog) will only give you word-for-word equivalences, not all of which will be exact.

In such cases, it's basically up to you to find paraphrases, synonyms and explanations. Sometimes it's more like consecutive interpreting, with a lot of leeway for approximation.


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:38
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
MS Glossaries + Search & Replace program Oct 14, 2005

The majority of the projects I work on involve translating software, documentation and web sites for PC-compatible products.

The reference material that helps me the most in these instances is a combination of my current translation memories, exported to text files, and the MS Glossaries.

I use Search and Replace to check existing MS terminology, as well as previous translations in my TMs.

When I translate in some other field, I tend to use electronic versions of bilingual dictionaries more, together with extensive use of Google and other search engines (including the KudoZ internet search).

The one paper dictionary I keep on using, even though it is now pretty old, is the large Sansoni English-Italian-English dictionary in two huge volumes: if they ever decided to convert it in full to an electronic product, I would buy it immediately.



[Modificato alle 2005-10-14 19:52]


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Ildiko Santana  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:38
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...

MODERATOR
self Oct 20, 2005

Walter Landesman wrote:

Actually, my most important resource while translating is MYSELF, my mind, my knowledge, my experience, my own skills. Dictionaries and other stuff are just help, but not the MAIN resource. That option was missing in this poll.
Best,
Walter

[Edited at 2005-10-14 16:07]


Walter,
My thoughts exactly! =)


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Sam Berner  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 01:38
Member (2003)
English to Arabic
+ ...
All of the above equally Oct 28, 2005

There are times and texts where dictionary are kind of outdated, and then Proz and Google swing into action. There are other times when I am doing statements written in dialect, and it is friends from those particular countries that are more helpful than Proz, Google and the dictionaries together. Often, it is something I remember reading about, or seeing somewhere.

I tend to agree with those of you who said "ME". One needs to know a lot and use all the mentioned resources as the cream on the cake, no the other way round.


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