Know what I’m thinking of these days? Translation evolution. No, seriously!
When in 1980s my mum studied linguistics, they had only paper source texts and paper dictionaries. To find the right translation of a word she had to go to a library, read lots of books and articles. And the translation process was quite different. She used her pen and sheets of paper and translated that all in writing! Can you imagine this now? I hardly can.
Being a student in 2000s I already had access to Internet and used Wiki to find explanations of events or notions. But I still translated in writing having lots of pencils broken. It may sound strange but I like writing with pencils, not pens. And always liked.
And look what we have now! CAT-tools, MS Office, PDFs, JPEGs and what not. I hardly have any paper at hand while working. Just a little piece to put something as a notification and a notebook for incoming assignments. Even putting a signature in my invoices can be done by clicking a Sign button in Adobe Reader.
Isn’t it a real evolution? And it’s all changing so fast I can hardly adjust.
Everyone has a native language. It’s what we learn at mother’s knees. While there are bilinguals and even trilinguals, most of us have only one mother tongue. We suck it from our language and cultural environment and feel even the smallest deviations from what we are used to.
For a translator, it’s very important to translate into their native language. The main reason for this is because we translate not words but meaning and ideas. Just one simple example will illustrate this process of correct conveying of an idea.
Let’s take a thing we all perfectly know — a Christmas tree. Really, what can be more straightforward? Any English-speaking person knows what it is. But if we translate it into Russian word-for-word, we will receive quite a foreign notion. Russians do not call it a tree nor do they decorate it for Christmas. In Russian-speaking countries we call it