6 Steps to complete your document translation

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Step 1 Client confirmation

Our project consultants are actively listening to your needs and assist in any  clarifications that you need.

In our “Big 3 Promises”, your enquiries will be answered within 30 minutes in the working hours. Once your requirements are firm, please send your source document via our E-Quote system http://scribers.com.sg/e-quote/ .  Please try your best to fill in as much detail as you can, and if possible please do upload your document  and our project consultant will be able to provide you with a precise costing. Every single document or information you provide to us is confidential and limited access for certain project team, so please rest assured!

Step 2 Terminology Research

Before we start translating your source document, the Project Manager and assigned team members will embark on the necessary research to build up a relevant glossary for  terminology database. In order to support translation excellence in your document, Scribers applies SDL Trados technology on each translation project. In this way, we can ensure the consistency of terms and stylistics  of every translated document you have.

Step 3 Translation

Each document translation will be assigned to our professional translator who has experience in the relevant field. Translation accuracy is the most priority we concerned; hence we will match a linguist with qualified education background and appropriate field in the mega Scribers’ translator pool. By doing thing, we can ensure the quality and efficiency of work. Step 4 Quality Check by Linguists

Once your document has been translated, it will go to the next process- proofreading and editing. Our proofreader will scrutinize the accuracy and appropriateness of the translated document to ensure the flawless translation in the foreign language.  Meanwhile, our editor will compare the source document word by word to ensure the consistency in both documents. Editors and proofreaders have to pass a series of stringent test regularly and each of them is highly respected in the relevant industry. At Scribers, we offer the free unlimited free re-editing service; in this way, we are confident to guarantee you a 100% satisfaction.

Step 5 Layout Editing & Cosmetic Checks by Engineers

In this stage, your translated document is nearly 90% of complementation. After the step 4 is completed and if you are happy with it, the DTP engineer will transfer the content on to the required layout and ensure the translated work without word segmentations. Our desktop engineers are extremely efficient and meticulous and able to deliver high quality work that is in line with your required layout and style.

Step 6 Project Delivery

At Scribers, our project managers control every detail in the whole process of document translation. Under the tight time frames and high stress level, they guide the team to execute the work in an accurate manner and stick on the Scribers’ ABC principle of service excellence. We commit each document translation you assign to us will be delivered within the deadlines and surpass your expectations. Meanwhile, we appreciate to get feedbacks in return; indeed, we believe your comment is the source to make us stronger and better in the near future!

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What do we learn from “Old McDonald Had a Farm”?

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Do you still remember the children’s song “Old McDonald Had a Farm”? In this song, we can learn many animal’s sound from dogs to donkeys. When teaching children a new language, we might start from mimicking animal sounds which is easier to remember and pronounce. Indeed, there are some “universal” animal sounds. Take turkey’s sound as an example, it’s “glou glou” in French and Greek, “clou clou” in Spanish, “glu glu” in Turkish. But for some animal sounds, it got some variation across different languages. Let’s take a look, see how various languages interpret the noises that different creatures make around the world.

  Image DogEnglish = Woof WoofSpanish =  Gua Gua

Swedish = Vov Vov

French = Ouah Ouah

Chinese = Wang Wang

 Image CatEnglish = MeowJapanese = Nyan

German = Maiu

Danish = Maiv

Turkish = Mijav

Image PigEnglish = Oink OinkFrench = Groin Groin

Japanese = Boo Boo

Greman = Grunz

Dutch = Knor Knor

Image BirdEnglish = TweetJapanese = Pii Pii

French = Cui Cui

Greek = Tschiwitt

Turkish =  Juyk Juyk

Image CowEnglish =  MooJapanese =  Mau Mau

Dutch =  Boe

French = Meuh

Turkish = Mooo

 burrowing_owl_by_dingo84dogs-d5u1m7i OwlEnglish = Hoo HooFinish = Huhuu

French = Hou Hou

Russian = Uh Uh Uh

Turkish = Uuu Uuu

Image DuckEnglish = Quack QuackDanish = Rap Rap

Greek =  Pa Pa Pa

French = Coin Coin

Spanish = Cua Cua

Image SheepEnglish = BaaJapanese = Meh Meh

Spanish = Bee Bee

Turkish = Maeh Maeh

Greek = Mae-ee

However, when translating these interesting phrases which interpret the sound; things become not interesting at all, especially for some animal sounds are not universal. We believe that the translating Onomatopoeia article we told before gives you a fully understanding. We hope you likes today’s article and get a free E-quote from Scribers for your next translation!

 

 

 

 

 

Pic Source:

http://www.fantom-xp.com/en_25__White_boxer_dog.html

http://www.wallsave.com/wallpaper/1366×768/cat-laughing-and-80387.html

http://artsignsymbols.blogspot.sg/2013/09/pig.html

http://www.hdwallpapersinn.com/hd-wallpapers-of-bird.html

http://waterconwellspring.wordpress.com/2013/09/10/good-news-for-cows/

http://www.hawaiilife.com/articles/2012/06/kailua%E2%80%99s-duck-lane/

http://12thebook.com/

http://www.hudsonvalleyalmanacweekly.com/2013/10/17/nys-sheep-wool-festival-in-rhinebeck/

Have You Ever Heard Transcreation Before? A Great Service Helps you to Reach Customers’ hearts!

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The term “transcreation” can be traced back to 1990s. Transcreation is a combined term from translation and creation. Language service providers may also label it as creative translation, localization, internationalization and cultural adaptation. No matter what it is called, the purpose of transcreation is to retain the essential meaning of the original source and localize the translated content to engage local customers.

You might ask what kind of consideration should be taken during transcreation? Basically, local culture, dialects, idioms and context are fundamental factors. However, apart from having a substantial knowledge of the local linguistic environment, translators also maintain and match the consistency of intent, tone and style with the original source. Thus, transcreation service surpasses machine translation; it is human translation which processes and produces a high level of creative language.  Transcreators need to be adventurous in order to create a new message and localize the new content, while taking a full consideration of the aforementioned facets to overcome the cultural and language barriers.  A perfect transcreation should evoke the same emotion and carry the same intended meaning for the local target audiences.

To put it simply, transcreation service is like serving a cocktail. Transcreators add translation and creative copywriting into the cocktail shaker and shake it, after which they have to ensure that this new transcreation will catch  the local customers’ attention and reach their hearts. At Scribers, our translators possess expertise in marketing and copywriting.  We are confident  in conveying  your messages more enjoyably and stylishly across the world.

Pic source: greekrestaurantmidtown.com/5-items-cocktail-pub-nightclub.

Why We Only Hire Experienced DTP Engineer?

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Desktop publishing (DTP) is an essential service in enhancing the overall translation process. DTP comes in handy especially when the format of the source document is not actually the “source” but has been passed around various parties before reaching our DTP team. This can be observed from the low resolution of the document, which has been scanned from a hard copy that may not even be the original document. The DTP engineer will have to refine the words and/or images by enhancing the resolution. This step is extremely crucial in facilitating translation since the DTP engineer will be able to generate a word document format for the translator. Therefore, the translator can avoid the fuss and hassle of ensuring that the right expressions or words are used in the “source document”.

DTP is extremely important especially when it concerns translating English to a language without word segmentations (such as Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese etc.). This is because the DTP engineer extracts English phrases or sentences and generates a bilingual word document file (it looks like an excel spreadsheet) to facilitate translation. After the translation is completed, the client will be a in a better position to judge the intended meaning and style of the translation; instead of viewing the translation in big chunks without knowing where the word segmentations are.

In conclusion, source documents can come in any other formats apart from a word document format; PDF, scanned images, etc. After the translation is completed and if the client is satisfied with it, the DTP engineer will then transfer the translated content on to the required layout. This is done according to the original layout of the source document; catalogue, certificate, etc.

Our DTP engineers are extremely efficient and churn out high quality work that is in line with the client’s required layout dimensions and style. Do not hesitate to explore Scribers’ DTP service on scribers.com.sg! We hope to hear from you soon!

Do words need a break?

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Word segmentation is informally known as “word breaks”. When translating from English to Chinese, Japanese, Korean or Thai, the absence of a salient word segmentation process may worry clients.  Segmentation basically refers to dividing a string of utterance. For instance, word segmentation would imply dividing a string of words. In English, word segmentation is easily observed from spaces between words. However, this is not the case for languages such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean or Thai.

When translating from English to any one of the aforementioned languages, clients might have difficulty typesetting the translation; fitting the expressions into the design layout since they are unaware of the word segmentations. For instance, the translated noun might not make sense without a case marker (ga, de, ni etc.) in Japanese or the translated verb might not make sense without a sentence final particle (le, ma, guo etc.) in Chinese. Hence, it is very critical to know where the word boundaries are, in order to match the meaning of the target text to the source text.

Fret not with Scribers! We resolve this mind boggling issue by ensuring that word breaks are addressed in a comprehensive manner for our clients. Our clients would be able to recognize word breaks and seek clarification with our translators if required. Apart from this, we also provide typesetting service that weaves in the translated expressions seamlessly, giving our clients an ease of mind when they engage our holistic translation and localization service. Log on to scribers.com.sg to begin your stress-free journey with us!

0 to 10, How Much Do You Understand “Interpretation” ?

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We hope our previous post on translation has given readers new insights on the importance of considering cultural and linguistic elements during the translation process. Today, we are going to discuss another important topic – interpretation.

There are generally two types of interpretation – consecutive interpretation (CI) and simultaneous interpretation (SI). The terms might have given you some clues about the distinction between CI and SI. For CI, it allows some time lag for the interpreter to make notes or jot down crucial points before transferring the meaning and gist into speech. However, for SI, it is definitely a lot more demanding and exhausting because it only allows an extremely short length of time lag – less than five seconds or half a sentence.

Many of you might overlook the high stress level involved in an SI assignment. Unlike CI interpreters, SI interpreters have to work in pairs or even in groups of 3 or more, depending on the nature of the conference or event. SI interpreters have to be spot on in terms of timing themselves as well as conveying the meaning of the source language. In other words, CI interpreters are given the opportunity to re-interpret when they wish to further refine the interpretation. On the contrary, SI interpreter do not have this advantage even if they wish to polish their interpretation. We also have to keep in mind that both CI and SI interpreters are not interpreting word for word; they have to keep in mind two different sentence structures and vocabularies. This further elevates the challenge of delivering a perfect interpretation for SI interpreters.

At Scribers, you can rest assured that our pool of CI and SI interpreters is well-trained with vast work experience. Some of them are not only bilingual but trilingual, or even multilingual. Being well versed in more than two languages gives the interpreter a winning edge in perceiving nuances across languages in a more sensitive light. Feel free to log on to scribers.com.sg for more details on our interpretation service!

What is Linguistic Untranslatability?

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What is the difference between translation and interpretation? The difference is very straightforward. Translation is written while interpretation is oral. Our blog topic today touches on the former and its importance in the globalized world that we live in right now. When translating, translators represent the conduit of passing information back and forth, from language source to language source. This involves understanding cultural and linguistic elements of both languages. This understanding is critical because untranslatability can happen due to different reasons.

For linguistic translatability to occur, languages must share common linguistic expression so that the same meaning is retained. For instance, Mandarin speakers tend to greet people by saying, “你吃飽了嗎?” which literally means “Have you eaten?”. Even though the Mandarin greeting can be easily translated into English – “Have you eaten?”, the same meaning (of greeting people) is not evoked in English. To English speakers, this might sound odd because they would probably perceive as an invitation to have a meal. However, when translated into Cantonese, the oddity would not be reflected since Cantonese speakers also adopt the same manner of greeting people by saying, “你食咗飯未啊?”. Hence, linguistic untranslatability occurs in English but not in Cantonese. Apart from greetings, linguistic untranslatability can also happen in metaphors and jokes.

Cultural untranslatability occurs when languages do not share a common cultural understanding. This is especially conspicuous when it comes to food culture and onomatopoeia. As mentioned in our previous blog post, onomatopoeia differs across languages – some meaning might be lost during translation because languages such as Japanese places more emphasis on onomatopoeic expressions, as opposed to Swedish or Spanish. Another stark example of cultural untranslatability would be translating the Indian food item, “thosai”. In English, this food item can be simply put across as “Indian pancake”. However, the cultural representation of this “Indian pancake” to English speakers differs from “thosai” since “pancake” is inferred as something “that is soft and tastes like flour”. According to Indians, “thosai” is however, not soft and tastes slightly sour due to fermentation. Hence, cultural untranslatability can occur because of the absence of a specific cultural representation in the target language.

In conclusion, as much as translators strive to retain the meaning and evoke the same reaction in their target readers, it is not surprisingly that the translated word is not a 100 percent representative of the source word. In academic terms, there is no 100 percent transfer of meaning, only high equivalence is possible – retaining as much as meaning as possible. This skill is thus, delegated to the translators. Expertise and experience are two very important prerequisites of producing good pieces of translated work. At Scribers, our translators are not only fluent and competent in two or more languages, but also take linguistic nuances very seriously. As a quality service provider of translation, we ensure that we keep up with the latest trends in linguistic and cultural expressions across languages and industries. We strive to maximize our customer satisfaction and take pride in our flawless track record.

Enter the Past Tense in Turkish

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On the other extreme end lies Turkish. There are a few past tense structures in Turkish, however, we are going to highlight two crucial past tense structures which mind-boggles many learners of Turkish. These past tense structures are as follow:

-di’li geçmiş zaman “Regular Past Tense” -di
-miş’li geçmiş zaman “Story Past Tense” -miş

Under the regular past tense structure, the affix –di can latch onto verbs, nouns (or pronouns) and adjectives. In the following utterance, the affix is attached to the verb. For example, when referring to an action that occurred in the past:

1)      Gel-di

come-PAST

“He came.”

The examples below feature the combination of a pronoun and an adjective with –di respectively:

2)      Şöhret        değil-di-n-iz

celebrity    NEG-PAST-n-2SG.FORM

“You were not a celebrity.”

3)      İyi-y-di-m

good-y-PAST-1SG

“I was good.”

Kindly take note that there are buffer letters (n, y) in Turkish. It is essential to have buffer letters in Turkish to prevent phonological clash. The usage of buffer letters depends on the phonological environment of the word. For example, to avoid a sound clash when there are two adjacent vowels, a butter letter is inserted. Of course, there are also many other situations which make buffer letters a must.

Let us proceed on to the next past tense structure, which is otherwise known as story past tense. The story past tense structure is used when the speaker has heard something from someone else, thus, he will not be held responsible for any wrong information. The speaker can also employ this tense structure when he is unsure of whether or not the action took place. In short, the speaker is the not the source of information since he does not possess any firsthand encounter. Similar to the regular past tense structure, -miş can also be attached to verbs, nouns and adjectives.

This utterance displays the verb+miş combination (The speaker heard from the boy’s mother that he went to school):

4)      Anne-si-y-le                             konuş-tu-m.       Okul-a                   git-miş.

mother-POSS.3SG-y-POST    talk-PAST-1SG    school-DATIVE    go-PAST

“I spoke with his mother. He went to school.”

The following shows the noun+miş combination (The speaker heard that the prime minster was in France):

5)      Başbakan              dün               Yunanistan-‘da-y-mış.

prime minister     yesterday    Greece-LOC-y-PAST

“The prime minister was in Greece yesterday.”

The final example features the adjective+miş combination (The speaker heard from Yurcel that his friend fell ill):

6)      Yurcel-‘le         onun             hakkında    konuş-tu-m.       Hasta-y-mış.

Yurcel-POST    POSS.3SG     about         talk-PAST-1SG    sick-y-PAST

“I spoke with Yurcel about her. She was sick.”

On a side note, you might have noticed the different spellings of the regular past tense and story past tense affixes (-di, –miş). This is due to vowel harmony in Turkish. Turkish has two sets of vowels, namely the front and back vowels. Vowel harmony disallows front and back vowels to occur in the same word. Hence, grammatical affixes, such as the ones presented here (-di/ –tu, –miş / –mış), come in both front vowel and back vowel forms. This segment on vowel harmony in Turkish shall be elucidated later on! Stay tuned!

Pic source: www.flickr.com/photos/jasonepowell

Is It True That “Past Tense” Does Not Exist in Chinese Language?

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Languages differ from one another in so many ways. Tense structure tends to be the complicated aspect of foreign language learning. For instance, even though Chinese appears to lack tense structure, Chinese speakers are in fact, aware of actions that refer to the past, present and future. In other words, the time reference in Chinese is represented differently – instead of tense, it is labeled as aspect.

To cut to the chase, aspect is conceptualized into two types of actions – either telic oratelic. The former refers to an action that has been completed while the latter symbolizes an action that is uncompleted. Because Chinese grammar does not marktense, whether or not the action is completed depends on the type of sentence final particle (SFP) (了 le, 過 guo). Both refer to actions in the past, but the minor contrast lies in guo being more far back than le.

As guo would usually be understood as an experience, thus the action appears to be more far back than le (他去日本 “He has been to Japan” as opposed to 他去日本 “He went to Japan”). To elaborate, in the first utterance, the mentioned person might already be back in his home country (he has the experience of visiting Japan) while in the following utterance, it is also possible that the he is still in Japan or is on his way to Japan. As Chinese does not mark tense (English: go, went drink, drank), speakers tend to rely on context to determine which SFP to use – whether it has been completed (guo) or it has not been exactly completed and still onging (le), keeping in mind that both actions would be conceptualized as “past” in general.

Languages differ from one another in so many ways. Tense structure tends to be the complicated aspect of foreign language learning. For instance, even though Chinese appears to lack tense structure, Chinese speakers are in fact, aware of actions that refer to the past, present and future. In other words, the time reference in Chinese is represented differently – instead of tense, it is labeled as aspect.

To cut to the chase, aspect is conceptualized into two types of actions – either telic oratelic. The former refers to an action that has been completed while the latter symbolizes an action that is uncompleted. Because Chinese grammar does not marktense, whether or not the action is completed depends on the type of sentence final particle (SFP) (了 le, 過 guo). Both refer to actions in the past, but the minor contrast lies in guo being more far back than le.

As guo would usually be understood as an experience, thus the action appears to be more far back than le (他去日本 “He has been to Japan” as opposed to 他去日本 “He went to Japan”). To elaborate, in the first utterance, the mentioned person might already be back in his home country (he has the experience of visiting Japan) while in the following utterance, it is also possible that the he is still in Japan or is on his way to Japan. As Chinese does not mark tense (English: go, went drink, drank), speakers tend to rely on context to determine which SFP to use – whether it has been completed (guo) or it has not been exactly completed and still onging (le), keeping in mind that both actions would be conceptualized as “past” in general.

Now, you understand how do the Chinese express “past” in their language. Have you ever thought about a past tense mark in another language? <To be continued>

Pic source: ashscrapyard.wordpress.com

10 Tips Guide You How to Write in Style

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Formal writing might not come as second nature to many, but there are some simple tips to get rid of these writing woes as far as basic formatting is concerned. Not being able to format your writing would probably leave the reader uninterested and annoyed. The lack of standardization might also imply the disregard towards the target audience as well as the nature of the document or report. It is important to be consistent once you have adopted a particular style of formal writing. This allows the reader to better understand and retain the content of your document. Below are some useful points to take note before you begin to produce or edit a formal document.

1)      First and foremost, whole numbers which are smaller than 10 should be spelt out. In other words, numbers one to nine should not be written as 1 or 7 in formal writing.

2)      If whole numbers are to be spelt out, numbers which do not belong to this category do not have to be spelt out. Values such as 3.5 or 0.5 do not have to be spelt out like three point five or zero point five.

3)      However, as mentioned earlier on, it is important to stick to a particular formal writing style from the beginning to the end of the document. There is really no standard spelling rule for numbers. For example, some writers or editors might adhere to the first rule above, however some might feel otherwise – one-word number should be spelt out instead. For instance, twenty instead of 20 or thirty instead of 30.

4)      Please use a comma if your document involves huge values. For example, in English, the comma is regarded as a thousands separator (886, 000 “eight hundred and eighty-six thousand”) while the period is understood as a decimal separator. However, take note that in Europe, this is exactly the other way round – the comma acts as a decimal separator while the period acts as a thousands separator!

5)      Centuries and decades should be spelt out. For example, seventies or twentieth century.

6)      Values which have been rounded off should be written in a numeral-plus-word format. For instance, about 5 billion or an estimated 20 million.

7)      When two numbers are written next to each other such as 2 15-year-olds, it can appear a tad odd and confusing. In this case, write 2 as two and the phrase becomes two 15-year-olds.

8)      When addressing people formally such as sir or madam, the first letter only needs to be in upper case when it is placed before the addressee’s name or when it appears at the start of a sentence.

9)      In formal writing, please refrain from using the percent sign %.  It should be spelt out as percent. For example, 20%  becomes 20 percent or twenty percent, depending on your preference (this brings us back to the third rule).

10)   Last but not least, please ensure that there is consistency once you have adopted a particular formal writing style. For instance, please do not write 20 boys at one point and then witch to writing twenty days somewhere else in the same document.

We hope these 10 tips have shed some light on adopting an appropriate formal writing style! Please feel free to share more formal writing tips. Happy writing or editing!  🙂

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