Best languages that Influence the World

big map

Studies have revealed how information flows across different countries to communicate and spread ideas far and wide. It’s a fact; speak or write in English and the world will hear you. Choose to speak or write in Tamil or Portuguese, you may find it difficult and hard to get the message out. According to statistics the second best language is Spanish or Chinese.

The study of mapping out best speaking language incited by a conversation about an untranslated book. A master’s thesis formed the basis of this new research. A bilingual Hebrew-English speaker told his MIT adviser who was a Spanish-English speaker, about an untranslated book written in Hebrew whose translation into English he wasn’t yet aware of. He then initiated his research about how to create worldwide maps of information and ideas transmitting for multilingual people.

Researchers tackled the problem by describing three global language networks based on bilingual tweeters, book translations, and multilingual Wikipedia edits. The book translation network maps number of books translated into other languages. That network is based on 2.2 million translations of printed books published in more than 1000 languages. For tweets, the researchers used 550 million tweets by 17 million users in 73 languages. In that network, if a user tweets in, say, Hindi as well as in English, the two languages are connected. To build the Wikipedia network, the researchers tracked edits in up to five languages done by editors, carefully excluding bots.

It was observed that English has the most transmissions; to and from other languages and is the most central hub, in all three networks. On the other hand the maps also disclose “a halo of intermediate hubs,” such as French, German, and Russian, which serve the same function at a different scale.

In contrast, some languages with large populations of speakers, such as Mandarin, Hindi, and Arabic, are relatively quarantined in these networks. This concluded that fewer communications in those languages reach speakers of other languages. Meanwhile, a language like Dutch—spoken by 27 million people— was shown to be an unreasonably large channel, compared with a language like Arabic, which has a massive 530 million native and second-language speakers. This was accredited to Dutch which was very multilingual online.

The network maps only reveals what is already widely known: If you want to get your ideas out, you can reach a lot of people through the English language. However it also discloses how speakers in distinct languages benefit from being indirectly associated through hub languages large and small. On Twitter, for example, ideas in Filipino can supposedly move to the Korean-speaking sphere of influence through Malay, whereas the most likely path for ideas to go from Turkish to Malayalam (spoken in India by 35 million people) is through English.

The authors note that the users they studied, whom they consider literate since they are online, do not represent all the speakers of a language. However, these elites of global languages have a disproportionate amount of power and responsibility, because they are silently the perspectives in which distant cultures comprehend each other—even if this is not their goal,” Hidalgo says. Most people learned about the conflict in Ukraine 2014 through news stories initially written in English and then translated to other languages. In this case, “any unspoken bias or angle taken by the English media will color the material about the conflict available now to many non-English speakers.

The networks potentially offer guidance to governments and other language communities that want to change their international role. If a country wants its national language to be more prominent, then it should invest in translating more documents, boosting more people to tweet in their national language. On the contrary, if a country wants their ideas to spread, it should pick a second language that’s very well connected.

For those who don’t speak English, English as second or third language is a clear option for them. For English speakers, the analysis suggests it would be more beneficial to choose Spanish over Chinese especially if they’re spreading their ideas through writing.

The problem of measuring the relative status of the world’s languages “is a very tricky one, and often very hard to get good data about,” says Mark Davis, the president and co-founder of the Unicode Consortium in Mountain View, California, which does character encoding for the world’s computers and mobile devices. “Their perspective on the problem is interesting and useful.”

Cultural transmission happens in spoken language too. Data on interactions reveal the souks of Marrakech, where people speak Arabic, Hassaniya, Moroccan Arabic, French, Tashelhit, and other languages, are impossible to get but important in cultural transmission. As internet becomes available to more people around the world, they go online in their own languages. When they do so they know how to connect to other languages and move their ideas, too.

WHICH ENGLISH TO PICK: UK OR US?

american_vs_british

A knock out round between the two king of thrones of international language; both of them fight to win the throne for sovereignty of the ‘s’ versus ‘z’ on our auto-correct spelling option keeps reminding us all.  Which version do you choose, American or English? Or rather which version do you REQUIRE?  ‘Harbour’ or ‘Harbor’?

Our TV content is ruled by American; from the tops charts in music industry to the ImDb ratings of American movies, power-driven by the large sums of money and effect which drives the language they use.  The large and powerful brands in global tech companies we turn to for text to write and read like Google, Amazon and Microsoft are all American bodies and create an immense unseen stimulus on our language and the way we communicate using it.

The question is how is British English surviving? Is it despondent upon the Queen and her unconquerable influence on all that is truly English? Sometimes it is referred to as the Queen’s English when we are trying to prove the fact that we know a phrase or word is ‘correct’. English originates from England after all, do why don’t we stick to the roots of this language?  Possibly US English is just a young language on the boom which might not stand the test of time.  England has a countless years of existence to fall back on. It is a survivor.

There was a time when English nearly lost out to Latin and French as the acceptable international language of trade, diplomacy and religion.  Even Nordic German made an attempt in the early 500s after the fall of Roman governance in England.

How non-English speaking nations deal with the struggle of choosing between the two versions of English can be realized when they adopt an English word into their own vocabulary, like ‘internet’. This is called ‘Anglicization’ and the way the writer chooses to spell expresses their link to either American or English culture.

To conclude I guess we have found our answer. Which spell check option you will ultimately choose?  Do you associate with American or English culture?  When you see the ‘z’ spelling does it strike you as somehow ‘foreign’?  Do you hope that your reader will notice you are the best of British if you chose the ‘s’ for Anglicization over the ’z’.

A new trend in Project Management

Project Management

 

You have experienced personnel in your organization?

No matter, you have most experienced staff working in your organization; you can’t achieve the milestones of success if you go on without proper project management. Project management is not the essence only in large firms but it also serves as an integral part to attain the success steps in a small company. The smaller projects also require proper coordination for making the human effort worthy with project management expertise. For initializing it, there should be project managers who are really good in project management as they have the blend of experience, knowledge and education to make the whole project a biggest triumph in reality.

If you want to hire and find such talented and great managers, it is a tough process though. You can’t find them in a straightforward way to hire for your organization and they are available externally. Now with the increasing need in market for using project management techniques and skills, there are some companies who have specialized in this service and you can ask them to recruit a good project manager for your firm or to provide whole project management team.

From construction to IT or in all fields, this is cent fully valid that project management personnel can elevate your company’s current position to maneuverable stages of success. An adequate choice of a project management company works really as booster otherwise external resources hardly change the line of success for any company.

While we work on selecting project managers, we need to keep in mind that companies offering this service are usually hired on per-project basis. This is further implies on your project requirement when the next project starts off, you may need to hire new project manager with relevant expertise to clearly make the project efficacious. To outreach this very concept make sure that you have outlined the contract in clear terms to avoid any misunderstanding and miscommunication which may harm the overall project efficiency.

If you have the same nature of project going in pipeline, it is better that you stick to single appropriately selected project management enterprise to eliminate possible fears of new hiring and their probable disadvantages due to lack of expertise.

Once you have hired the Project Manager!

Yes, this is the dramatic effect you will be seeing after hiring a talented resource or more often called “Project Manager”. There is no doubt that you will notice amazing detailed changes directing towards complete and prominent success when you will have the asset “Project Manager” who possess the power to make human efforts a blend of fruitful techniques laying the foundation of ultimate triumph.

An adequate professional Project Manager makes you able to implement your projects better and bring the potential ideas for upcoming streamlined projects ahead. In actual the Project Management services bring up great standings and competitive advantage for company with complete flexibility and risk assessment actions. It eventually leads your organization to attain customer satisfaction, minimized risk of failure, programmed management services and more in the end.

Better up the grounds of unlimited growth for your business and trust on CCJK because here we have the best and experienced project managers.

Learning and accumulating experience from typical projects

During our daily work, every project manager will encounter different kinds of projects every day. Some of them maybe intractable, and we may feel annoying and troublesome when difficult to handle. However after we figure out all the problems, and deliver the files of good quality, by then we can summarize the experience, and found there are so many things can be learned from each project, and also the similar projects can be easily solved in future. Take some cases I did in this month for example.

I. English to Vietnamese subtitle translation project, which is not just simply translate each sentence but has strictly character counts demand. At beginning, we did the translation in DOC file, it is really hard to calculate the character counts. Then we revised for a lot of time, but still could not satisfy the client. Finally, we found a method, to copy the translation to EXCEL, made the character limited setup, then the character count can be easily noted. Once insert one word, the column will reflect accordingly, which made the client satisfied at last, and with that we gained several following up projects.

II. Engineering brochure English to Simplified Chinese translation. We delivered the translation on time, then received the feedback from client, he did some modifications for the first paragraphs, we need to revise the file as per his modification. After studied the revision carefully, we found most of them were just changed to Traditional Chinese saying, however what we requested was Simplified Chinese translation. Although our previous translation was no problem, still we revised the file and deliver again, solved the problem successfully.

III. Political article German to Chinese translation. The source if of highly difficulty, and the author request extremely high quality. To guarantee a good quality, we had three linguists who cooperated with us for years did a sample test, then the author chose the most qualified one to handle the translation after comparing. Although we did every step as per author’s demand, still the translation has not reached his expectation in beginning, then we picked the linguist who owns the political background to do the proofreading for several times, consult with the author, Finally reached an agreement.

As a PM, except handle all kinds of projects well, coordinate with colleagues of other department, meet all kinds of demand of the clients. We should also ensure the quality of every project. Checking the translation carefully: is the format adjusted well as per source file; is there any sentence missed translation, is there any wrong spelling; go through the whole translation to see if it is readable before submit, By doing this, we can not only strengthen our own ability, but also can serve our client better, As long as we can insist all the steps, I believe it is necessary to build a long term relationship with every client.

On Public Signs (Two)

On Public signs (Two)

This is nothing, but for fun…

OK, in this part, I’m going to point out some problems existing in public signs translation. Although translation of such materials is not something new and much emphasis has been laid to it, the current situation is far from satisfactory. Problems that existed before are still prevalent in practical translation these days and the quality of translation leaves much to be desired.

Very good signs, I think…what a great Party…We are all affected…

Problems in linguistic aspect

Chinese and English belong to different language families, thus there are many differences between them. For instance, Chinese words are formed of some characters with meanings, yet English words are composed of some meaningless letters; Chinese is a parataxis language, while English is a hypostasis language; Chinese has no clear signs of tenses and voices, which are definitely shown in English. Due to so many differences, it is virtually necessary to consider many aspects in translating Chinese expressions into English.

1.    Wordy language

Here is a slogan of an activity held,“创一流服务,迎接四海宾客”, someone translated as:“Welcome our honored guests from home and abroad with first-class Services”. In my opinion, we can briefly translate this sentence into:“First class service to all guests”. Because “all guests” here presents “四海宾客”.

2.     Without standard language

Someone translated “闲人免进” into English is:“No admission for man with nothing to”, but if you refer to the conventionalized speech in English it should be: “Staff Only”. For the reason that public signs play a very important role in the daily life both the native and the traveler, any misunderstanding and ambiguity may cause serious consequences. All the public signs used in our daily life have been standard. For example:

双向行驶  Two Way

小心玻璃  Glass

游客服务中心  Visitor Center

外币兑换  Foreign Exchange

免税店  Duty Free Shop

3.    Grammatical errors

In a souterrain,“残疾人通道” is translated as “Disabled Access”. The word here is used to modify the word“access”, which means the access is disabled. It is more proper and polite to translate it as “Access for the Underprivileged”.

4. Spelling mistakes

These errors are due to carelessness either of translators or printers. Public signs with spelling errors may not cause severe misunderstanding, but make negative impression on readers and discount the effectiveness that public signs should achieve.

It may be shocked to see such an expression “Read End Collision” on highway, with the original meaning “追尾危险”. This public sign is very common and essential on highways to warn drivers against accidents and keep the traffic order. The key word “Rear”, however, is mistaken for “Read”, and with no doubt the sign loses the intended meaning.

For Chinese children, I think this sign is quite easy to understand. But for foreign ones, I guess not… “Keep yourself away from the danger of deep water”, maybe they should try this one…

Problems in cultural aspects

Problems of this type deals with a more comprehensive aspect—culture. Translation involves language as well as culture. Many tourists hold that the best translation should be the “cultural translation” instead of mere “linguistic translation”. “Translation is intercultural communication, the ultimate goal of C-E is to let outside world know China, to improve the transmission of Chinese culture and promote mutual communication between China and other countries”. The quality of translation is evaluated by how the readers comprehend it, which means the functions of public signs in the two cultures should be the same. Problems concerning this aspect are similar to those with “hidden injuries”.

1. Harsh mood

Some signs such as “禁止入内”,“禁止践踏草坪”,“违者罚款” can be seen everywhere in big cities, for most Chinese, they are not disturbed by these characters. But if you think carefully, this kind of public signs contain a tone of command and mandatory. Chinese word“禁止”often be translated into “don’t” in English. It is not euphemistic enough in English. For example:

禁止摘花  Don’t pick the flowers.

禁止往车窗外仍东西  Don’t throw something out the window of the train

禁止喧哗  don’t make noisy

禁止践踏草坪  don’t tread on the grass

Obviously, we can hardly find any mistakes grammatically. However, it has a very rough or rude tone which gives us a sense of distance. Being a host, we absolutely can’t leave such an impression on our guests. So maybe we can translate such sentences without using the word “don’t”, for example:

禁止摘花  keep away from the flowers, please or take care of the flowers, please.

禁止喧哗  quiet, please

2. Chinglish

To translate these publicly used expressions with Chinese characteristics into standard English as native speakers, we need to make great efforts in understanding the implied cultural meaning. The Chinese and British have different thought patterns and consequently different ways to express ideas. If an expression or sentence is described as English but with Chinese characters, Chinglish occurs. To be specific, it is the misshapen, hybrid language that is neither Chinese nor English. Translators will be inevitably influenced by their mother tongue, which may result in unsuccessful translation without critical thinking. For example: “游客止步”is one of the most common public signs in all scenic places. The version as “Visitors Go No Further”, “Stop” and “Guests, Stop Here” may confuse the foreigners and misleading them into standing by the sign board. If it is rendered as “Closed to Visitors” or “Out of Bounds”, foreigners will not be puzzled.

What’s your first impression if you see this kind of signs on the street? Whether to laugh or cry… but one thing is quite certain that you wouldn’t take your girlfriend to there…“拿铁咖啡” doesn’t mean “coffee with iron”, instead it is a kind of Italian coffee combined espresso with milk, which named Caffè Latte.

 

 

Differences Between Chinese and English Sentences

Chinese and English are two kinds of special languages that have many differences from many aspects. If we know these differences clearly, it will benefit our translation and we will bear these differences in mind to make proper adjustments during translation. Here I would like to discuss some of them.

Firstly, English emphasizes structure. That is why English sentences are always very complicated and they often express many meanings just in one sentence through structure arrangement. Therefore, they use many subordinate clauses. But Chinese sentences lay stress on semantics, so they are much simple and short in structure.

Secondly, most English sentences are much long while a lot of Chinese sentence are relatively short due to the former characteristic. By knowing this difference, we should get rid of the constraint of the original text and try our best to write the most authentic Chinese sentence during translation. The key is to analyze the structure of the long English sentences and divide them into several small parts. Take a sentence for example: By the stair lay at least twenty-one shoes of all sizes and colors. 楼梯旁放着一堆鞋子,少说有二十一双,五颜六色,大小不一。If you translate this sentence as “楼梯旁放着至少有二十一双五颜六色大小不一的鞋子”, although the meaning is clearly expressed, the Chinese sentence reads uncomfortable and obviously is worse than the first translation.

Thirdly, English uses pronouns more often while Chinese uses nouns instead. Such pronouns include not only we, you, it, he, they, ect. but also that, this, which. Due to this, you have to identify what do the pronouns intend to refer to and use corresponding nouns to replace them during translation, so as to make the meaning more clearly.

Fourthly, English use a large number of passive sentences, especially in scientific English. On the contrary, Chinese often uses active sentences. Although these words such as “被” and “由” sometimes are used in Chinese sentences, they are less common in Chinese than in English. So we should translate English passive sentences into Chinese active sentences as often as possible to suit the expression habit. For example, It is said that…据说……It is reported that…据报道……It is estimated that…据估计……It must be pointed out that…必须指出…… It can not be denied that…不可否认……It is (generally) considered that…大家(普遍)认为……

Fifth, English often puts the important part at the beginning of a sentence and will describe facts, reasons, etc. later. But Chinese often describes the facts, reasons and assumption first, and then represents the conclusion, results and deduction. Therefore, you should reflect the difference during translation. That is to say, change the word order when doing bilingual translation.

Training Course Translation Project Case Study

About the project
Multimedia Instructional Design Ltd (MMID) wish to get a training course translated into both simplified and traditional Chinese. There are around 65,000 words in total. This is not a technical course as the content consists of a method for teaching children to read. The translation would need to show the English headings for each page as well as the Chinese headings so that the finished work could easily be matched with the English source. These courses should be proofreadered after the translation.

Our solution
While waiting for the client’s decision, we CCJK are thinking what our team can do and what kind of value we can create for the client as one of their reliable localization partners. The following ten points are what we come up as a step by step procedure, and definitely we put them into execution after the project ready to go.
1. Cooperate with the vendor qualification process to be their qualified language provider. We did a small test translation (both simplified Chinese and traditional Chinese) for the client. We did it successfully and MMID is very happy with it and we are in a very strong position to win the project.
2. After we have the go-ahead from the client, we prepare a glossary by scanning all text and extracted all key and project-specific terminologies from the translation kit. The glossary play a key role in keeping consistency and increase manageability thus ensure success of a multilingual project.
3. We use Computer Aided Tool (CAT) to create and maintain a Translation Memory (TM) for your projects on long-term basis. Every translation unit will be saved in TM. One time translated, multi-time used. Thus save your cost (at least 30%) while enhancing quality and consistency. Another advantage you can take by creating TM is, we charge fewer words as we discount both for repetitions and for similar words (75%-99% match)
4. Fast response to the client’s every enquiry for timely communication; Periodic reporting for your progress tracking and monitoring.
5. Select only the qualified linguists who are familiar with the area and experienced in training materials translation.
6. Strictly follow the quality guidelines of American Translators Association (ATA) and make sure every translation to be edited by a second linguist and proofread by a third party to assure the best quality.
7. Do as much research as possible for those terminologies or source texts whose meaning is uncertain for an informed translation. For any uncertain issues that could not be resolved in-house, always raise a query log to you for verification.
8. Run a post-production check based on the localized course at the later stage of the course localization project. Our linguist team will review the localized course to make sure the accuracy of the translations.
9. Make countless modification according to your review feedback until you are fully satisfied with the final deliverables. Update the glossary and TM in time so that you always maintain a most update glossary and TM for your next translation project.
10. By combining all above altogether, we will make sure the client update and release of new courses can never be easier and faster.

About client
Multimedia Instructional Design Ltd (MMID) is in the business of providing Web, Multimedia and e-learning learning solutions for corporate organizations, government agencies, visitor centres and tourism-related bodies. MMID has a long track record in delivering innovative technological and visual solutions in Ireland and the UK. The company has produced award-winning videos, animations, educational interactive material, websites, corporate intranets and more recently visitor centre multimedia experiences.

ABOUT CCJK
Founded in 2000 and born for Internet, CCJK is a highly trusted professional e-Services company supported by more than 2,000 talented linguists, engineers, designers and programmers who work as a super organized team. From language translation, desktop publishing, graphic design, software localization, website development, SEO, user guide to corporate eLearning, we provide one stop solution to help client gain competitive edge. We rely on streamlined and sophisticated process to ensure fast and quality delivery. By trusting CCJK’s one stop solution, you need only focus on your core business, win market share and maximize your profit in simplest and soonest way.

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