Cross cultural adaptation, nuance awareness, multilingual expertise, insightful mastery over style/tone and what not; a translator has to keep a record of all of such data that serves him a better path to facilitate a spectacular performance. Obviously, machines cannot match such high standards of precision. This is the reason why brands around the world weigh human talent more than the insentient machine translations. But, as problems are bound to occur, no matter what you are dealing with, translation industry too has some unexplored hitches that are a serious headache to the translators. However, if you deal with them sensibly, the solutions are not too far.
Here are some of the major issues (along with their respective solutions) that translators deal with on a regular basis –
Problem: Culture is generally woven with few important elements, viz. values, symbols, language, colloquial expression and norms. Out of these pivotal pillars, colloquialism is something that makes the translation task hard as hell. Except in legal, technical and medical translation, colloquial words pose as a great hurdle for the experienced translators as well. The only reason behind this is the varying number of dialects spoken in a specific region. The larger the region, the larger is the number of dialects.
Solution: The simplest way to deal with this is to scrutinize the internet and learn the most popularly used colloquial words. Also, get familiar with the dialects used in the specific locale or region. This will get you soaked up in the culture and you will start translating like a local. For more help, you can watch TV, movies or read magazines in the target language. This will certainly shape your translation career in its most beautiful form.
2. Language Structure
Problem: The structure of the language is another factor that disturbs the translators. However, it is not something to be panic about. The structure of one language may not be the same as another. Thus, while translating the content from, say English to French or vice versa, translators often commit mistakes in the placement of adjectives and nouns. As a result, the meaning gets completely changed in the translation output.
Solution: Achieving expertise in anything is possible through constant practice. Hence, you need to practice, practice and practice, in order to get the structure ‘right’. To ease up your process, you can make use of translation memory tools, grammar checkers and other allied techniques. Slowly and steadily, you’ll grasp a hold on these factors and won’t need to rely on any of them, for a perfectly structured sentence.
3. Missing Terminologies
Problem: This is a common issue in most of the languages, and the major reason for this is culture. It often happens that a term used in the source language has no equivalent term in the target language. This is because the specific term may not be used or regarded as offensive in the target language. For example, a word like child adoption, may not have a properly related equivalent in the another language.
Solution: The only solution to such a problem is to contact the client and ask for guidance. Only he or she could suggest you the right course of action in this case. You might be suggested with a new term, or may be asked to refrain from using the said word. The client may even ask to devise a new term, which is quite close (in terms of its meaning) to the word.
4. Technical Knowledge
Problem: Technical translation facts are so widespread that keeping a hold on all the factors is quite a daunting task. Although, one may easily find a specialized translator, yet it should not be neglected, that a translator is a linguist first, and a subject master later. Thus, even after specializing in technical documents translation, translators can commit mistakes, if a document is full of specific procedures or technical jargons.
Solution: No wonder, you’ll take more time than usual, if it is a technical document. But, if you are stuck somewhere, you must contact the client without any second thought. You can even contact someone, who is a local expert and possess years of experience in such translations. Once you are done with the project, try to explore resources that help you get a deeper knowledge.
The Ultimate Solution
A maestro is the one, who can handle every hurdle coming his way to success. Hence, if you need to evolve as the victor in the translation industry, you need to be calm, at the very first. Every problem has a solution, and the problems occurring in the professional life of a translator are dependent on how calmly you solve them. So, stay at peace; don’t panic, as otherwise, you may certainly end up making horrifying mistakes.
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