Travel and Culture

Terminology Glosses: Hikikomori and Ikigai

Let's talk about Japanese. In Japanese, the personal pronoun 私 (watashi, I) becomes 私たち (watashitachi, we) thanks to the suffix たち (tachi, mark of the plural). Moving up one level towards syntax, we then realize that the word order in Japanese is subject-object-verb. These two features alone should suffice to...

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The perfume of bad translation, part 2

Apparently my new favorite hobby on small airlines is to read their in-flight shopping catalogues — specifically what appear to be their worst and most amusing translations. I discovered this pastime a year ago, as some of you may remember. In this case, I was flying Aegean with a flightload of Greeks, nearly all of whom were engaged in loud conversation with someone behind them or across the aisle.

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Multimedia synonyms explored

A lot has happened in translation in the last few years, including significant advances in multimedia translation. A quick search resulted in a whole list of neologisms corresponding to new techniques and approaches in translation. The term surtitle in particular is a neo-formation coined following the same pattern as its cognate word subtitle.

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Blue, Gorm, Elektrisches Blau: David Bowie in Irish and Transcreation

Táimid ann sa mhóimint dhraíochtach seo Sin é an stuif as a bhfitear brionglóidí  . . .  * I’m mega-fan of the music of the late David Bowie. I love everything he did from Hunky Dory (1971) up to his Lodger (1979) album (you can keep the rest). His so-called Berlin Trilogy is amongst my favorite recordings; I always go...

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Wearabletech: Gucci Translate Anyone?

This innovation from IconSpeak caught my eye recently, though not the attention of my credit card. It’s a t-shirt printed with icons that enables global travellers to communicate by pointing to the icons, doing away with the need for those so-so translation apps and clunky phrase books into the bargain. The icons themselves are said to be...

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Localization Immaturity Model: Are We There Yet?

The reality of the “gig economy”. Incessant talk about “Millennials“. Language startups and their hoody culture. Is there no end to being made feel “old” these days? As I look around me at those new faces I see at industry conferences and compare it with my Twitter “Following” list, I wonder if I might be “old”? Could I...

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The Advent of Finnish Emojis: Happy Holidays, Headbangers

The Finnish government has released its own set of emojis (絵文字) that capture just what it means to be so Finnish. Reflecting the season that’s in it, you can view these emojis advent-calendar style on the web. The emojis’ release was covered by National Public Radio’s (NPR) All Tech Considered radio program from the U.S. It’s worth listening to. These emojis...

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