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GE Global Innovation Barometer

GE Global Innovation Barometer Statistics

GE has released a first-ever report, surveying 1,000 business executives in 12 different countries, entitled the GE Global Innovation Barometer.  The purpose of this survey is to highlight the opportunities and roadblocks of working in a global economy and what businesses need to do to maintain success in these different economies.

The central principle behind the data gathered is that innovation will be key in this economy.  Never before have businesses needed to meet the needs of so many vastly different markets.  This is where localization is of the utmost importance.  The study shows that the new innovations have shifted from ones that simply make a profit, to those that enrich people’s lives.  77% of executives believe that the greatest innovations of the 21st century will be those dealing with human needs, such as healthcare, environmental quality, energy security and access to education.

Also to be noted, in the survey it was found that because of the new emphasis on innovation, many companies must restructure and redesign their business models, leaving a wide opening for small to mid-sized companies to come in and become major players.  Also, 86% of those surveyed say that this century is about partnerships between several entities, as opposed to single company successes.

Don’t let your firm be left behind in the innovation boom of the 21st century.  Access those global markets and connect with other businesses that you can connect with and can grow with you.  This is the perfect time to get involved with a translation service providerEpic Translations can provide you with all the translation services necessary to transition your company from national to international.  Let’s all grow together.  Give us a call today!

Lost In Translation

Lost In Translation Mistakes

Last week, as the Chinese President, Hu Jintao, had his only policy address during his four day trip to the United States, he was left with quite a surprise.  He was toasted by Coca-Cola Co.’s Chief Executive Officer, Muhtar Kent, in a very original way… in Japanese.

“In honor of this very historic moment, I would like to propose a toast to President Hu and also to his esteemed delegation — kanpai,” Kent said.

Laughter erupted from the crowd immediately.  See, Kent used the word “kanpai”, meaning cheers in the Japanese language.  Unfortunately for Kent, nobody told him that the Chinese and Japanese word for “Cheers!” both use the same Chinese characters, but pronounced differently in the two languages.  The word in Chinese is “ganbei.”  Fortunately, nobody took offense to this mix-up.

This was the second translation issue since Hu has been in the U.S.  (President’s Translation Mix-Up) Having a qualified and experienced linguist around would have easily prevented this mistake and saved Kent much embarrassment.  Next time they should call Epic Translations!

Regional Dialects

A regional dialect is not a distinct language of its own, but a variety of language spoken by a certain region of a country.  Take into account that regional dialects are of utmost importance when translating a document, thus it is also necessary to express to your Translation Service Provider if you require a specific dialect to be used.  Depending on what language you are translating to or from, the regional dialect can have a vast impact on the meaning of the words in translation.  The recent Google Translate for Android App does not even recognize the different regional dialects when translating between Spanish and English.

Regional dialects Importance

Regional dialects are quite important to many cultures, as it helps to keep their heritage current and thriving, so they cannot be ignored by sticking to official languages.  All attempts to standardize the English language had been resisted by the American citizens, with the continuing prevalence of slang, swearing and modified grammar through the different parts of the country.  Every country has its own varying forms of regional dialect.  Although in the U.S., the different regional dialects are understood by virtually anyone through the country, it is not as simple in other cultures.

In Spain, the regional dialects are so vast, they even have different language through different regions, to the point where an interpreter is required in the Senate.  Interpreters have been hired to translate into Castilian Spanish from the senators who speak Catalan, Galician, Valencian and Euskara.  Although it can be an inconvenience to have a translator for those who most likely can all speak Spanish, it allows the Senators to express themselves in their own regional dialect, which allows them to maintain their heritage when representing their region.

Here at Epic Translations, we have translators to fit your every translation need, for every regional dialect you may need.  Call today and see how we can fulfil your translation needs.

President’s Translation Mix-Up

President Translation Mix-Up : Between President Obama and Chinese

At a news conference this past Wednesday, between President Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao, there were some translation mix-ups, causing great confusion between the two leaders. There was not simultaneous translation from English to Chinese for Hu Jintao, as thought by President Obama. When both leaders were asked a question, it was not immediately translated to Hu, leaving him unaware of the question, thus not responding. His lack of a response cause many to believe that he was avoiding the subject of human rights altogether, when in fact, he had just not been asked the question in his own language. Another mishap occurred when Obama answered a question with a quite lengthy response, but because there was not simultaneous translation occurring, the interpreter was made to translate the long response after Obama had finished, which increase the margin for error in the translation.

Later in the conference, a reporter jokingly asked for the translator “to interpret my two questions correctly and accurately.” Although it is not entirely clear what caused the confusion, it was stated by White House representatives that the Chinese had requested consecutive, not simultaneous translation, which apparently had not been expressed to Obama, or he would have responded in shorter, more broken up and easier to translate segments. There were also issues with the American live broadcast, sometimes having stretches of Mandarin that most Americans are unable to understand.

Clearly, this is an example of the necessity of clarity of what’s expected when working with professional translation services. Both parties need to make their expectations clear to the translator and to each other to get the job done well. Here at Epic Translations, we are always making sure that all bases are covered with our translation and interpretation work. Come give us a try and we’re sure to impress. Give us a call at 1-877-EPIC-745

Pharmacy Translation Initiative

There’s a new initiative being pushed in New York to provide language assistance in all chain pharmacies to those residents who don’t speak English. Many citizens are not able to read or understand a pharmacist’s instructions of their medications. Nisha Agarwal, director of the Health Justice Program, reveals that 88% of pharmacists see patients with limited English proficiency daily, but only 39% of pharmacists translated labels daily. “The pharmacist couldn’t explain to them how to take their medicine in a language they would understand,” Agarwal said.

Pharmacy Translation Initiative Requires Translation Services

A bill has been passed already that requires pharmacies to print prescription labels in the 7 most common languages in the state. The new initiative would require translation services for every language, most likely through a phone service. It would also require pharmacies to post signs, making patients aware of their right to a translator.

Google Translate for Android

On January 12, Google released a revised version of its Google Translate for Android Application. The service was already allowing translation via text for 53 different languages and translation from voice to text in 15 languages. The new revision allows two users in close proximity, speaking different languages, to converse back and forth entirely through voice. One user speaks into a microphone, and the application translates the speech and reads it out loud. The user being spoken to can then respond and the application translates their speech back to the original speaker’s language. As of right now, this technology is only available for translation between English and Spanish.

Unfortunately, this technology is not without its flaws. There are still issues regarding background noise, users who speak too quickly, and thick regional accents. And of course, we are all aware that machine translations are hardly close to perfect. If you’re seeking translation service on a professional level, it’s absolutely best to skip the difficulty and problematic nature of machine translations and hire professional translation services. Here at Epic Translations, we have a service to fit your every need. Click the Contact Epic tab at the top of the page to reach us and we’ll get back to you immediately.

50 Best Careers in 2010

In these difficult economic times, a change in career or a supplemental source of income is sometimes necessary for many.  One avenue for one to explore is the translation industry.  “U.S. News & World Report” lists translator/interpreter as one of the 50 best careers in 2011.  Demand for translators is growing rapidly as the translation industry itself is increasing at a projected rate of 22% between 2008 and 2018.  Additionally, translators generally work on a free-lance basis, allowing one to choose how much work to undertake, making this the ideal situation for those with a full-time job or a family.  It also allows for you to live anywhere and travel at will, because translations are done over the internet.

To get started in the industry, you need to have at least two languages under your belt, in addition to English.  It is also recommended that you develop expertise in a field that requires regular translation work, such as engineering, medicine or law.  Keep in mind that you have to know the subject well enough to discuss it in both languages, which usually requires a Bachelor’s degree in that field.  So what are you waiting for?   The translation industry is ready for you! If you would like to apply to work with Epic Translations, you can go to www.epictranslations.com, under the “Linguists” tab and fill out the form.  We look forward to hearing from you.

Translation Memory – expertise at your fingertips

Did you know that EPIC Translations is a partner with SDL Corporation? What does this mean for you? Well, first you should know who SDL Corporation is. They are the “world leader in Global Information Management providing software to help corporations create and maintain all multilingual content.”

How does this help you? SDL Trados is a computer-aided translation tool that:

  1. Enables you to break texts into segments or sentences and presents the segments in a convenient way, to make translating easier and faster;
  2. Enables you to save the translation of each segment with the source text;
  3. Enables you to save the translation units in a database, called translation memory (TM), so that they can be re-used for any other text, or even in the same text.

Here are some of the benefits of creating TM for your content:

  1. Speeds up translation for your content
  2. Ensures consistency and quality within translations

EPIC Translations has the expertise to help you cut down costs on your translation needs.  Contact us today for further information.

Take Advantage of Translation Consulting Before Beginning a Project

Advantages Of Professional Translation Company

Many times a business does not contact their translation company until they have already decided on what they need translated and want to begin the project. If your company is operating this way, you may be missing out on one of the most important value-adds your translation company has to offer, consulting.

One of the best things about using a professional translation company is their ability to help your company identify their specific translation needs before beginning any project. As subject matter experts, a professional translation company will be able to understand the specific linguistic services necessary to achieve your company’s goals.

Your translation company may be able to suggest which translated documents will make the most impact when your company can not afford to translate everything at one time. If you are trying to expand your company’s worldwide presence and enter the global marketplace, your translation service provider can suggest what translations would be most helpful to achieving this goal and what languages are the best fit for your product or service.

Many companies may decide to translate a document or website, only to feel later like they didn’t receive the added benefit they were looking for. Consulting with your professional translation company before requesting projects can help your company achieve the greatest value for translation dollars spent.

Machine Translation (MT) on Smartphone

Machine Translation Software on Smartphone

Quite a few companies have released Machine Translation Software for various smartphones and tablets in order to provide on-demand translation service.  In some instances, you can take a photo on your phone and send it to a server where it will provide you the translation in your desired language.

In other instances, the Machine Translation Software can instantaneously translate full sentences for you.  While these are definitely technical breakthroughs, I’m not sure whether many practical applications exist for MT software on your smartphone.

Can you imagine if you’re in a meeting and your company speaks only Chinese or French?  In order to have a meaningful conversation, are you going to first speak into your smartphone and then point it in the direction of your company so they can listen to the translation of your sentence?

Or better yet, if you’re on a conference call with a potential client or a business partner, are you first going to speak into your smartphone and then point it towards your landline phone so you could have a meaningful conference call?

Bottom line

Bottom line is that MT has limitations in its practical applications.  Machine Translation will never be good enough to completely replace the human translator or the human interpreter.

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