Wednesday, July 25, 2012

French Translation Boston

Consistency in Translation

Consistency in translation is one of the most important and difficult aspects of the job. If the translation is inconsistent, it may confuse the reader or even make the text obsolete.

Let's take a more detailed look at what type of consistency we are talking about here.

When we refer to consistency in translation, generally we talk about the same terms being translated the same way. Language is not exact science so 2+2 doesn't always equal 4 meaning that there could be several correct translations for one term. Let's take a word "Warning" and its French translation. "Warning" could be translated into French as "Mise en garde" or "Avertissement". Either one of these terms is correct but in translation they have to be consistent. So if a translator chose one version, he has to stay persistent with that one version throughout the whole text. At times the documented translated could be dozens of pages long and deadlines could press the translator to work faster than usual. Under these circumstances, a translator can make a mistake and translate the term "incorrectly". That could be confusing to the reader who sees that at the beginning "Warning" was translated as "Mise en garde" and all of a sudden it switches to "Avertissement". It could also be confusing to the client who may not speak the language but may catch this inconsistency visually and that presents a big problems for the translation agency. Let's just say we'll get a call.

So what do we do in order to ensure that translation is consistent? As we talked in previous segments, a translator works together with a proofreader and a Quality Assurance team. But also a translator and the team uses what's called Computer Assistant Translation Tools: CAT Tools for short. We'll take a look at those in our next article.
Stay Tuned!

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