TRADUCTOR AUTÓNOMO
ESPAÑOL - INGLÉS

"Servicios de traducción del español al ingles de calidad"

Frequently Asked Questions

Here you can find answers to some frequently asked questions.

Why use a freelance translator?

  • Why not go through an agency?

    While using an agency to fulfil your translation needs may have its advantages, so does hiring a freelance translator directly, which is essentially what the agency will do for you. They will also charge you their hefty middleman fee, on top of what they pay the freelance translator assigned to your project. In order to remain competitive many agencies pay their translators low rates in order to charge the end client an accessible rate. This often precludes them from using highly specialised professional translators who are not prepared to work for such low rates. If you deal directly with a freelance translator, who has few overheads to cover, he/she can deliver a better result at a better price. You may consider, however, using an agency for very large translation jobs which require a team of translators to finish on time. Obviously there are ramifications in terms of language consistency and style which must be further addressed by the agency.

  • Why not use machine translation?

    Whilst there are several machine translation applications on the market, as yet there is not a single one that can match the efforts of a professional human translator. See the question relating to TM and MT for more information. Perhaps in the future we professional translators will all be replaced by machines, but that day is a long way off.

  • I have an employee who speaks English. Why use a professional translator?

    Whilst you may have employees with a sound knowledge of Spanish and English, they probably do not have the specialised software, glossaries, dictionaries and many other technical resources used by a professional translator. It is extremely important to ensure that your Spanish text is translated into English by a native English speaker in order to obtain a translation with the appropriate grammar, tone and style for the target audience. Presumably your translated document will be read by native English speakers, and the way your text is written will play an important role in how they perceive you, your company or organisation. For this very same reason I do not offer English to Spanish translation services, and would consider it unprofessional to do so.

Translation Quality?

  • TM and MT — What's the difference?

    TM stands for Translation Memory and MT stands for Machine Translation. Both are used to automatically recognise and translate portions of text, but they are very different. Translation Memory works by recording the translated segments of a documented while a human translator is translating it, storing them in a database. If a similar or identical segment occurs later in the document, this is then presented to the translator for him or her to review and either accept or modify. This is very helpful when translating repetitive texts in order to increase the consistency of terminology within a document or set of related documents. It does not do the work for the translator, but allows for improvements in productivity and consistency if used correctly.

    Machine translation on the other hand attempts to translate the entire text by means of using a massive glossary of translations of individual words and phrases and sticking them all together to produce the final translation. This is of little use for producing a quality translation, but may be useful for getting the gist of something written in a language you do not understand, or for translating lists of simple text. The translation occurs with a complete disregard for context, and for the professional translator context is everything. You can easily check the inadequacy of such tools by entering some text you can be sure is well written into one of these tools and request that it translates it into your native language.

  • What do I need to provide the translator to get a quality translation?

    Provide as much context as possible, including any pictures, graphs, tables or diagrams which accompany or are integrated into the original text. Provide as much additional information about the text to be translated as possible, including details about the target audience, where the text will be published and any relevant background material (referenced texts, catalogues, terminology). If you only require the translation of part of a text, provide the entire text for reference purposes. If you have previously translated material, you may wish to provide this as well to ensure consistency between this material and the text to be translated. For transcription tasks which require a specific transcript format it is important to supply clear guidelines, and where possible a document template or example. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, give the translator sufficient time to do justice to your text. Consider the amount of time you or your company has spent in producing the text (writing, research, correction...). Try to avoid last-minute rush jobs and staggered deliveries and to plan time for translation into your work flow. The more time a translator has the better the translation will be.

Cost Issues

  • How can I keep the cost of translation down?

    Wherever possible, provide an electronic copy of the document(s) you need translated instead of a printed or handwritten hard copy or fax. While I can deal with .pdf files, an editable electronic document is preferred. This allows me to use TM technology to translate the text and reproduce the original formatting, hyperlinks etc. at no extra cost to you, as well as the added benefits in terms consistency of terminology etc. If you must supply a handwritten or scanned texts please make sure they are easily legible to avoid ambiguities.

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Contacto

Robin Kongialis,
Calle 38A #307,
San Luis Chuburna,
97205, Mérida,
Yucatán, México

Tel: (+52) (01)999 286 28 44
Correo-e:

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