Now that I’m in lockdown due to the coronavirus and waiting for my next job to come in, I’ve had some time to make some long-planned major improvements to the Useful Links page. As a result, this page has now been divided into five separate sections with their own categories. These five sections are:
Section 1: General dictionaries and glossaries
Section 2: Subject-specific dictionaries and glossaries
Section 3: Writing-related resources
Section 4: Translation-related tools and links
Section 5: Other links of interest
It’s the last section that has changed the most with the addition of more categories and resources. The list starts off with the new Codes & Shortcuts category with links that I use a lot when I can’t remember how to type some characters.
Back in February last year, I asked you all to answer some questions about translation qualifications in a survey. I kept extending the deadline because I was hoping for more responses. And then when I should have being doing a write-up of the results, Brexit and the UK general election, family issues and the ever-present threat of the climate emergency filled my head and my spare time leaving me with no energy or enthusiasm for the blog.
Now that we’re in the midst of a global pandemic, my work has all but come to a halt so at least I can finally get around to thanking everyone who took part in the survey and giving you the results. As there were only 59 respondents and I imagine this post might make some colleagues want to give their views, I have reopened the survey and will continue accepting responses until the end of July 2020.
For readers that don’t know the ‘Useful Links’ page, it basically consists of four main sections that are each divided into several subsections. These are packed with links to help you translate your texts, run your business and even enjoy your leisure time. This post gives you a quick overview of what’s new since the last update in October.
The first main section lists general dictionaries and glossaries. The new subsection here is General Into & Out of Spanish, which I’ve added to make it easier to find resources that are primarily for looking up how to translate words from and into Spanish. As I work from ES to EN, there’s a heavy bias towards this language pair in the first couple of sections. New here is: Diccionario español – mallorquín. The other resources were previous listed under General Multilingual.
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Welcome to the latest update of the ‘Useful Links’ page. This major update has been underway for a few months and I apologise that the “Back to top” has not been working during that time (fixed now).
Besides adding lots of new links to help you with your translations and running your business, I’ve divided the page into four main sections and added nine new subsections.
The first section contains the general monolingual resources (now divided into three different subsections to make links easier to find) and general multilingual resources.
New additions include British, Scottish, Canadian and American English dictionaries. With around 100 links in total in this section, there’s lots to explore.
First, I’d like to welcome all new followers to my blog. In case you haven’t come across the ‘Useful Links’ page before, it’s a list of links I originally put together for myself to make my working life easier. Over the years I’ve added many more links and divided them into over 40 categories so you can have information at your fingertips to help you work better and faster as well. I use this page every day when I’m translating and, with over 10,000 views so far, it’s also popular with colleagues.
You’ll find more details about the page in this post.
The ‘Useful Links’ page on my blog is by far the most popular with almost 9,500 views so far. I’ve been working on it in recent weeks, adding some new links that I’ve come across over the past few months. Some of you may have noticed that the clickable ‘Back to top’ hasn’t been working. For some unknown reason, every time I add anything to the page, all the ‘Back to tops’ stop functioning and I have to fix the coding one by one. They should all be working properly again now.
Last week I was delighted to be invited as the guest on the newish live translation chat show run by Dmitry Kornyukhov and Elena Tereshchenkova. Called Blabbing Translators, because it’s held on a platform called “Blab”, it airs every Wednesday and the first season will be ending on 22 June. As they won’t be returning until August, now’s a good time to catch up on any of the episodes you might have missed. With topics ranging from the past, present and future of the profession with Steve Vitek to collaboration with colleagues with Emeline Jamoul, and including interviews with Tess Whitty on diversification, Paul Urwin on marketing and Christelle Maignan on coaching, there’s bound to be a podcast to suit everyone.
Among the scores of posts published on translation blogs every day, very few manage to reach out and grab my full attention as much as Kevin Fernandez’s on The Open Mic. Provocatively entitled Why I Don’t Use Bilingual Dictionaries and Why You Shouldn’t Either, I knew I wasn’t going to agree with the content before I even started reading it. And although he softens the initial impact of his title by assuring us that he isn’t actually advocating that “we should never use them”, the beast had already been unleashed, sending everyone scurrying off to defend their respective corners.
I can appreciate that excessive use of a bilingual dictionary as a prop without exploring whether its suggestions are appropriate for the context in question is not helpful. This is especially true if you are a language student trying to get to grips with the intricacies of a language. But giving impressionable young professional translators the idea that it is wrong to even use a bilingual dictionary for their work is counterproductive.
As I’m not the most tech-savvy of people, it usually takes me a while to pick up the basics, let alone the niceties, of any program. In March I finally learned a few more commands in DNS (Dragon NaturallySpeaking), specifically how to underline, put in italics and make bold. For example, in the previous sentence, if you want to put “specifically” in italics, you say “select specifically” followed by “italicise that”. If you want to underline it, you select it and then say “underline that” and (I’m sure you’ve got the idea by now) if you want it to be bold, you say “bold that”.
Made a mistake and want to reverse what you’ve done? Just select the word again and repeat the same commands. In other words, if specifically is already in italics and you say “select specifically, italicise that”, it will revert back to normal Roman type. I also tried this with “All caps that” (the command to capitalise a word or phrase you’ve previously selected), but unfortunately it didn’t work.