Translation Process

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Published: 22nd June 2010
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Before I brief you the process of translation, we should first understand the meaning of translation. Translation is the process to render written or spoken source language texts to equivalent written or spoken target language texts.

At the first glance, as per the definition, it seems very easy and quick process, but in reality it is as complicated and methodological. When a project come for translation it has to go through several stages before it finally reaches to the translator. Even then it goes through more stages till its final delivery. This entire process can be sum up as The Translation Process.

The translation process includes decoding the meaning of the source text, and re-encoding or translating this meaning in the target language. Behind this simple process lies various activities like checking grammar, syntax, idioms, semantics, and the like of the source language and also the culture of its speakers. It is necessary that the translator's knowledge of the target language is more important than his knowledge of the source language.

The process, which is usually followed by all to ensure a well written, accurate translation:
The document that is to be translated is assigned to a person who is well versed with the native language is that which the document is being translated into. The document is edited by a person who is fluent in both the target and source languages. Accuracy, grammar, spelling and writing style are all checked in the editing stage. The document is proofread by a person who is fluent in both languages. It is also necessary to check spelling and layout. Finally, before the document goes to the client, the document is further rechecked to ensure that the translation is correct, there is no missing text or texts and the layout is perfect.

There are also some particular problems in the translation process: problems of ambiguity, problems that originate from structural and lexical differences between languages and multiword units like idioms and collocations. Another problem would be the grammar because there are several constructions of grammar poorly understood, in the sense that it isn't clear how they should be represented, or what rules should be used to describe them. The words that are really hard to translate are frequently the small, common words, whose precise meaning depends heavily on context. Besides, some words are untranslatable when one wishes to remain in the same grammatical category. The question of whether particular words are untranslatable is frequently debated.

Few measures can be taken to avoid and produce the best translation. It is important that translators are familiar with the product they are translating and also with the tools they are using. The translation process is not the replacement of one word with another, but the formation of concepts in another language. Thus, each translator should have equipment and knowledge compatible with the language being translated. Translation guidelines and instructions should be provided to ensure correct translation. To ensure accurate translation, terminology glossary should also be provided to the translators.

To ensure quality we must follow this process and safety measures. After all it's the quality and gaining clients trust that matters.

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