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The Role of Linguistics in Translation

Linguistics plays an important role in the translation of a document from one language to another. Translating information includes more than just changing each word from the original language to another. One must also decode and decipher all the facets and functions of the original language into the new language. This is where the study [...]

The Most Common Language on Earth

In the English-speaking Western world, many people assume that the most common language on Earth is English. It seems to be spoken in nearly every country, at least conversationally if not fluently. It would follow that translating a document or website into English would reach the most people world-wide. However, this thinking is not entirely [...]

The Danger of Relying on Google Translator

There are certain circumstances where a machine just cannot replace humanity. Language, in all its myriad forms, is one of the most complex functions of the human brain. Software-based translation is simple and not as sophisticated as the knowledge base of a native language speaker’s mind, despite the leaps in technology that this industry has [...]

Black Smoke for the New Pope’s First Speech.

French TV channel TF1’s live translation of the first words of Pope Francis after he was elected drew complaints from a large number of viewers. As the Pope recited the “Our Father” and “Hail Mary” in his address, viewers criticised the rough translation of these prayers. The TV channel quickly posted an apology on its [...]

Translation in Life – Food

When thinking about translation and food, I’m reminded of an episode of I Love Lucy, where the four main characters are in an exclusive French restaurant where the menus are only in French. After falling over themselves to avoid ordering first, one of them points to something on the menu and asks for four orders [...]

Translation in Tourism

Have you ever traveled abroad? If you have been to a resort in another country, chances are that you were greeted in English, filled out the forms in English, ordered from an English menu, and much more; all of it working seamlessly and allowing you to enjoy yourself in that country without a language barrier. [...]