Language Experts' Blog

The Difference Between Speaking a Language and Translating It

The Difference Between Speaking a Language and Translating It (A language graduate’s perspective) The differences between speaking a language and translating it are countless. My job, passion and intimate relationship with the language industry have led me to realise that the differences between speaking a language and translating it are countless. Naturally, depending on the … Read More

When Mist Becomes Manure – Professional translation could save your brand

Clairol, the hair products company, introduced the Mist Stick curling iron a few years back. While the product sold well around the world, sales came to a grinding halt in Germany – ‘Mist’ of course being German for ‘manure’. Cue toothpaste was introduced to the French market by Colgate, sharing its name with that of … Read More

Afrikaans Translation. Past, Present And Future

Under Apartheid, South Africa had two official languages: English and Afrikaans. Translation into and from Afrikaans was the order of the day. Afrikaans terminology lists were developed in most subject areas. In 1994, language policy in South Africa was democratised. Official status was awarded to 11 languages. Afrikaans was liberated from the zoo of artificial … Read More

Human Translation vs Google Translate

Google Translate is a fascinating and continuously evolving online resource that currently allows users to translate single words and short phrases directly and surprisingly accurately into 50 international languages.   The app version even allows users to take a photo of signs in 27  languages and have them translated, a huge boon for travelers! – … Read More

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How do you know your document has been properly translated?

In our diverse, multicultural business society we are faced with unique challenges. Doing business in 11 official languages requires documents to be professionally translated across language barriers. Mistranslations are easy, African inflections can be challenging to the untrained translator and literal translation errors are all too common in the industry. This creates a quality control … Read More

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