In every industry, there are some key terms that you should know. Not only do these key terms make it easier to understand your project, they also make it easier to communicate with any vendors you partner with. Translation terminology is no different – knowing the terms that your Language Service Provider (LSP) will use can help to streamline the translation process and make it easier to complete your organization’s projects. 

Translation terminology: language services

There are many different language services that an LSP provides. Knowing the difference between each language service can get you started on the right foot with your language projects! 

Translation is the process for converting written text from one language (the source language) to another language (the target language). Translation projects can help to increase the reach of your written documents, and make your organization’s programming more accessible for all of your audiences. 

Localization is “the process of adapting a product or content to a specific locale or market. Translation is only one of several elements of the localization process.” Localization also involves adapting graphics, fonts, colors, and other textual items to ensure that the content feels like it was created for the target audience. 

Interpretation “is the facilitation of spoken or signed language communication between users of different languages.” Interpretation can be done in-person or remote, either over-the-phone or on a video chat software. 

Desktop Publishing (DTP) is the process of reformatting your documents after they are translated. Translation can change the layout of your document, which is why reformatting with DTP is important. Your DTP team will adjust the text for any sizing/graphics issues, and ensure that it is as functional in the target language as it is in the source language. 

Translation terminology: the technology

There are a variety of different technological tools that can support your translation projects as well. The technology used by each LSP can be different, but there are two main types of translation technology that you should know: 

Computer-Aided Translations (CAT) Tools are “software systems that human translators use during the translation process to improve their productivity.” This translation tool is particularly used for the creation of Translation Memory (TM) databases, which allow your translators to check your current project against saved translations to make the process more efficient. 

Machine translation (MT) “refers to fully automated software that translates content into target languages without human intervention.” These tools are used less frequently by LSPs, but are still employed by them for different purposes. At Avantpage, we do not use machine translation for your translation projects.

There is other translation terminology you should know, but having these in the back of your mind can help to streamline your projects and make communications with your LSP that much easier. If you’d like to further discuss translation terminology or get started on your next translation project, we can help! Call us at 530-750-2040, or request a free quote today.