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Barbara Jungwirth of reliable translations llc writes about language and the business of translation.

Category Archives: Translation Services

English ≠ English

Q: Which of these pictures shows a “coffee can”? A: Both do. The one on the left is a coffee can & saucer friends brought from England, the one on the right is the coffee can in my New York kitchen. When I receive a request to translate a document “from German to English”, one […]

Why a Translator Must Write Well

My documentation specialists must be able to write well, but the freelancers translating that documentation don’t need writing skills – after all, the text is already there, they are only transferring it into another language. Right? Wrong. If translation consisted simply of substituting each word in your documentation (the “source”) with the equivalent in, for […]

How Do I Know That the Translation Is Correct?

In addition to price, timing and technical issues, such as file formats, quality assurance questions are often important concerns for documentation managers. Here are some ideas on how to ensure that your translated material will be as good as your original text. Pay for editing and proofreading Hire in-country reviewer(s) Conduct in-country testing Use experienced […]

Will the Translated Files Be in the Right Format?

Now that you have estimated the time frame and cost of your translation project, and tried to make that process as cost-effective as possible, you may need to deal with the technical side of the project. If you only use MS Word files for your documentation, you can skip this post. However, chances are your […]

What Can I Do to Reduce That Cost?

After I spent two posts (“How Much Will It Cost?” Part I and Part II) explaining how translation services are priced, you will probably wonder how you can lower that cost. Here are my tips on steps you can take to reduce translation expenses. Handle formatting in-house Internationalize source text Re-use text Handle project management […]

How Much Time Will It Take?

“How much will it cost?” and “How long will it take?” are the two most common questions anyone who buys a service has. I explained the variables that influence the first question in my previous two posts (“How Much Will It Cost? – Part I and Part II). Here I will explain the issues to […]

How Much Will It Cost? Part II

As I noted in Part I of this post, a number of different variables determine the price a mid-sized company looking to expand into foreign markets may pay for having their materials translated: The language combination The type of text The length of the document(s) The formatting and file type(s) of the original The desired […]

How Much Will It Cost? Part I

This may well be one of the first questions our hypothetical documentation manager (see “A Documentation Manager’s Questions About Translation”) asks. After all, he must present upper management with a cost estimate for this portion of the push into the US market. The answer, like that for so many other questions, is: it depends. A […]

A Documentation Manager’s Questions About Translation

A recent article in the New York Times* got me thinking about questions a documentation manager might have about the translation process. The article profiled Marcus Sheridan, one of the owners of a pool company, who began to write blog posts in response to common questions potential customers posed and saw his business improve as […]