What is the difference between translating and interpreting?
Basically, a translation is written text and interpreting is spoken communication. Translating is the correct term for the process of putting a text written in one language, (the source language) into written form in another language (the target language). Sight translation is the term used when a translator/interpreter reads out loud in the target language from a text written in the source language. Interpreting is saying in the target language something said in the source language.
How much does it cost to translate a document?
Cost is determined by many factors: language, size of document, complexity, deadlines, quality of the source text, formatting and platform. There is a $75.00 minimum for Spanish<>English translations and a $125.00 minimum for all other languages. Generally, however, you should expect to pay somewhere between $0.12 and $0.40 per word for our professionally executed translations with a 25% premium for rush jobs. We can only give an accurate estimate of what it will cost to complete your project once we have had a chance to review the material you want translated. We will gladly e-mail you a no-obligation quote upon request. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is your turnaround time?
Our turnaround time is about 1,500 words per day of finished, edited and proofed translated text.
How can I get my document to you?
An electronic file is best. You can use e-mail or use our FTP site. Of course, you can also fax the text, use regular mail or bring it in person, whichever is most convenient for you.
Do you do website localization?
Yes, we can translate your website and adapt it to the culture and sensibilities of the target language and country.
What software do you use for your translation projects?
We use Star Transit, the most up to date multi-language translation memory tool. Star Transit is a software tool for translators and translation project managers featuring the following:
- Translation Editor: specialized translation editor designed to meet the needs of the translator
- Translation Memory: for automatic reuse of previously translated terms
- File Format Filters: interfaces for all common file formats
- Terminology Module: automatic background terminology search
Star Transit is not a machine translating program. It is a memory program with proofing tools. It allows us to customize dictionaries and glossaries for specific clients so that the translator can produce faster output with greater accuracy and consistency, which in turn reduces the overall cost.
What is machine translation?
Computer programs as aids to translations have been around for a very long time; however, so far none have come near to providing a degree of accuracy close to even the worst human effort. Even though machine translation can be useful for very large projects, such as a 5,000 page manual, it proves to be too expensive and unsatisfactory for smaller documents. Machine translation needs human editors and proofreaders constantly monitoring the output, making the necessary corrections and re-running the program until the machine “learns” the context. This is tedious work and the end result is at best 90% to 95% accurate. More accuracy can be gained by more editing and re-running the software but at a certain point the cost-to-benefit ratio is lost. Economy of scale can be achieved, however, when approaching 15,000 to 20,000 pages using multiple editors and proofreaders. For more on this subject go to:
How do you manage your translation projects?
The principal starting point is to determine the client’s requirements. We then select an expert translator or team of translators. Terminology and glossary questions are resolved and a schedule is established. For projects over 5,000 words or so a client specific dictionary is maintained using Star Transit XV, a memory software program. Once completed, the project is delivered to the client for review and approval.
How is a project set up? How do you keep the client informed about the status of the project?
All translations are assigned to a project manager who organizes all aspects of the translation from beginning to end. He or she is the liaison between the client and the translator(s), making sure that translation, editing and proofing is being performed in a timely manner. If there are any changes or questions from the client the Project Manager keeps track of the requests and coordinates with the appropriate people to insure the requests are met as soon as possible. This is especially important when large and/or multi-lingual documents are being translated. The project manager is also in charge of coordinating and tracking the project when typesetting or special formatting is required. He/she makes sure all formatting issues are dealt with in all detail and in the appropriate order within the project time line, to avoid delays and to insure the product is delivered on time, every time.
What is your proofing procedure?
Electronic proofing tools are used first, then the human touch. Editing, proofing and discussion are the principal ways a document is reviewed.
How do you perform your Quality Assurance?
We are sticklers for quality control. Not only do all our translators undergo a rigorous selection process, but each translation, whether done in-house or processed by an outside expert, is subjected to a careful editing and proofreading process. Any ambiguous points found during editing are discussed between the translator and the editor before the final copy is approved. If necessary, the client is consulted.
How many revisions do you allow?
The client may revise the original document as often as he/she cares to. But stopping and starting the translation will delay the process and can incur additional costs.
How do you individualize your service?
Every translation project is customized to meet the needs of the individual client.
Do you provide software localization?
Yes. Software localization is highly specialized and requires knowledge of the terminology used by programmers. It is not programming. It usually entails translating the help files and links within the help files so that when clicked the link takes you to the correct location. We gladly examine and bid your project.
Can you translate English into Cantonese or Mandarin?
A very brief discussion on the Chinese language:
There are 2 forms of Chinese writing: Simplified and Traditional. Simplified writing was officially adopted in the People’s Republic of China (Mainland China) in 1949 in an effort to eradicate illiteracy. The simplified script is also used in Singapore but the older traditional characters are still used in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia and by the vast majority of Chinese living abroad, including the USA. Mandarin, Cantonese, Toishan, Shahanese, Chu Chao and so forth are spoken dialects and can be expressed in either Simplified or Traditional Chinese writing.
For more detailed information go to:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_dialect