Locating an equivalent word into target language in translation is mechanical, and transmitting the culture and motion under words is what translators do.
Translators use methods for translating and interpreting communication between linguistic groups. But the act of translating is about much more than providing word ‘equivalents’ between languages, such as replacing the English ‘yes’ with the Chinese “是，好的，恩”, which one match best with the occasion, social status of the speaker, writing style, etc. Also because language is so deeply rooted in culture, individuals in the field should also be familiar with political, historical, geographical as well as many other aspects of different populations.
Interdisciplinary in nature, translation brings together different areas of the humanities and social sciences. As a field, it provides methodologies that translators can use for translation as well as tools for evaluating the theories that drive the discipline. The tools are the technique we may readily master from work but never the science. The scientific knowledge is so profound that may take us years to grasp. Being a master not only on translation but also on different subjects, which is the very challenge lay before translators.
Also, not to say the scientific language and knowledge, even the tasks toward which translation skills may be used vary considerably. From business reports to computer manuals and political statements to literary pieces, so many needs for interpretation and translation exist that professionals often specialize not only within specific dialects, but also media formats. Translation is all about making proper language choices that accurately reflect a source’s meaning in these different contexts and environments. However, making choice is never easy. Sometimes, translator needs to understand something he never experience, and sometimes, he needs to figure out specialized paper and represent the in front of professionals in other language like an expert as the author.
In all, it is a profession of cross-culture, Interdiscipline, keeping translators to acquire knowledge in their whole career life. Are you prepared to swear as a translator?