WORLD OF TEXT

Posts Tagged ‘languages

Hallo. Hello. Hola. Salut everyone. The time has come to say goodbye. It’s already my last week at the translation firm WORLD TEXT. I started my internship on January 07. Three months have passed so fast!

So, let me tell you a bit about my experience.

I have to say, it was one of the best internships – and I’ve done a lot of those.

My tasks:

I sometimes had to fit the cliché and make coffee 😛 At 9.30 every morning I had to go to the post office and to the bank.

Most of the time I was proofreading various texts, once even an entire user’s manual.

When I found something “suspicious”, I was allowed to add a comment in the document and send it back to the translator, who then answered my question/corrected the corresponding part of the translation. This was the task I liked most! I deepened my knowledge of languages; it was interesting to learn how translators – native speakers – expressed certain phrases and which word they used for a certain term. Sometimes I added comments that didn’t necessarily relate to the text, I just wanted to know things like: “Could you also use that word instead of this word?” or “I’d write the place first, which possibility is more common?” I enjoyed discussing with the translators.

Proofreading was also a gain for my general knowledge. The texts I read were so diverse – from contracts and deeds to brochures about enterprises in the meat industry to articles about marketing and advertising.

Sometimes I had to do “blind proofreading”, i. e. proofreading a text in a language I don’t know and checking it for mistakes in numbers etc. This showed me once again how many different languages there are in the world. I often found similarities in certain languages, too.

Of course I was allowed to translate/prepare some texts myself 🙂

I also did internet research and updated the terminology databases.

AND I posted various articles here on the WORLD TEXT blog.

I hope you enjoyed reading my blog entries!

I don’t know when the next intern will follow and if/how much they’ll post on here – but I’ll definitely stay tuned – and you should, too!!! 😛

If you’re interested in a WORLD TEXT internship yourself, don’t hesitate to contact them, they’ve had interns from all over the world: info@worldtext.com

Don’t forget to visit the website: www.worldtext.com

Yup, that was it.

Tschüss! Bye-bye! Adiós! Salut!

Here comes a new blog entry by the current WORLD TEXT intern! As translators and interpreters work with many languages every day, I’ve been wondering – what’s the most difficult one?

My research shows – you just can`t tell. It depends on who you are, what your mother language is, what languages you already know, how you study a language, and so on.

There are many “top language lists” on the internet, and people are leading heated discussions.

The language I often, almost always, find on these lists, is Chinese. Of course – their writing system and the immense number of Kanji impresses most people. But what about the rest? Grammar, pronunciation, vocabulary…? Of course, for us Europeans, Asian languages are interesting and exotic. But when you’re Japanese for example, it’s not that hard to learn Chinese, as far as the writing system is concerned, because it’s the same. However, the Kanji differ in meaning and the Japanese writing system also includes Kana.

The languages also often mentioned are the Slavic ones. They’re difficult indeed. But it’s not all about a different alphabet. I suppose grammar and pronunciation aren’t so easy either.

Chinese and Russian come to your mind quickly, but what about Finnish or Icelandic? They’re said to be pretty hard to learn as well. African, Arabic, Korean, Hindi, …

…or Polish. I found something interesting on the internet:

Number “two” (2):

English, Spanish, Dutch: 1 form (two, dos, twee)

Portuguese: 2 forms (dois/duas) – depending on gender (2 – masculine & feminine)

Croatian: 7 forms (dva, dvije, dvoje, dvojica, dvojice, dvojici, dvojicu) – depending on gender (3-masculine, feminine, and neuter) and case in one specific form.

Polish: 17 forms. Depends on gender (3), case for all forms. Pretty much all these forms occur in regular speech (6-11 less often than the others) – 1. dwa 2. dwie 3. dwoje 4. dwóch (or dwu) 5. dwaj 6. dwiema 7. dwom (or dwóm) 8. dwoma 9. dwojga 10. dwojgu 11. dwojgiem 12. dwójka 13. dwójki 14. dwójkę 15. dwójką 16. dwójce 17. dwójko

The language that’s often forgotten is English. Just because a lot of people speak it, doesn’t mean that it’s easy. Many people could perfect their English.

What also irritates me is that many people say, certain languages are very easy to learn. “No problem, go to site XY and you can learn it online in a few months!” No! You can learn the basics, but not the entire language. It needs many YEARS to be good at a language. By the way, those “easy” languages mentioned are Spanish, Italian (and sometimes even French). I think that’s not true at all. If you’re one of those “quick online learners”, listen to…an agitated Spanish soccer player and tell me what he says. Or listen to one of François Hollande’s speeches; do you understand all the idioms, the political terms? Or isn’t it as easy as you thought after all?

One more thing I’d like to say. Some people boast of “knowing” so many languages. “I can speak Spanish, French, Italian, Greek… also Chinese… and I know what “How are you” means in Russian and Swedish.” I think they only have a basic knowledge of most of the languages they “know”, so if this is the case, I’m not impressed, rather annoyed. I know many people, we all know many people, who live and work in our country, but who are from abroad/have a different native language. They “only” know “our” language and their mother tongue, but they can speak both perfectly, they communicate at work, talk with clients, have to deal with complaints and misunderstandings, they go to the doctor, to the bank, they offer us their help… this is much more impressive, don’t you think?

My name is Madeleine and I come from Bavaria, Germany.

I’m doing an internship here at WORLD TEXT from Jan 07 until March 30. I can speak German, English, Spanish and French. I’m a foreign language correspondent and as I haven’t gained any job experience so far, I hope to improve my language skills and learn new things here at WORLD TEXT. I’m writing in English because I hope to get more people interested in this translation firm 🙂 Especially when you’re from abroad, an internship at WORLD TEXT is a great opportunity to perfect your German and learn more about our country, Schwerin and its magnificent castle.

My grandmother’s relatives live here and they told me about the firm, that’s how I heard about WORLD TEXT. Regarding accommodation, there are many facilities where you can stay (at a reasonable price) – now I have to do proofreading (Spanish -> German), so see you later!!!