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Jun 25, 2018

OmegaT: free CAT tool, free webinar

Click this graphic for more information and registration....

Didier Briel, current project manager of the Open Source OmegaT CAT tool, will discuss what makes this language service community resource unique, how it can enable you to work together comfortably in teams with others who use different tools (interoperability) and other interesting matters.

Have a look and see if this is the versatile, multi-platform tool you've been looking for!

IAPTI Brings the Translation Revolution to Spain on September 28-30, 2018!

The infamous Renato Beninatto once referred to them as the Taliban of the language services world because of their ardent refusal to endorse the worst practices in translation and interpreting with which unscrupulous people hope to transform those professions into an "industry" to grind out ever cheaper and less palatable linguistic sausage. Thus the term LSP ("Linguistic Sausage Purveyor") which the bottom-dwellers of the bulk market bog so proudly embrace and claim as their own.
I mean, what else can you say about an organization that counts Noam Chomsky as one of its honored and honorary members? The stated mission and objectives of the International Association of Translators and Interpreters (IAPTI) seem to many to be beyond the scope of your usual professional organization in the language sector. If its members were all black, I suppose the term uppity would be applied often in some corporate and political power centers. Like all of us, they do sometimes fall short of their lofty goals, but as one angel commented when God cheated and pulled back Faust's immortal soul from its deserved descent into Eternal Fire,



I wasn't quite sure what to make of IAPTI in its early days; the mention of its name tended to cause excess, foamy salivation among the more staunchly neoliberal of my professional acquaintances; the concepts of international solidarity and fairness seemed so out of place in the world I knew, where the BDÜ kept a sharp eye out for cross-border incursions from colleagues in France or Poland. There was an unsettling whiff of Marxist flatulence in the air at times, though I knew a number of the organization's most active members and they seemed like reasonable, personable sorts, though they did exhibit a disturbing lack of faith in the force majeure of the large international organizations who, reminiscent of a mafia extending its influence in the neighborhood, are increasingly taking the place of smaller translation firms who know and serve their local markets or specialized clientele well.

And—Heaven forefend!—they allow no corporate membership nor are they open to the influence, much less the control of interests promoting the reduction of professional work to the unergonomic slavery of corporate post-editing of machine pseudo-translation (PEMpT) unlike, for example, the American Translators Association which seems rather eager to bend (over) their planning to accommodate conference schedules with such interests. 

On September 29-30, 2018 IAPTI will hold its international language services conference in Europe once again, in the beautiful city of Valencia, Spain. A fitting venue, I think, in a country with a long history of struggle over basic questions of decency, dignity and centralization versus local control, questions which, as recent events in Catalonia have shown us, remain to be resolved.

I attended an IAPTI conference for the first time four years ago against the violent (!) opposition of some, and I was surprised to find that even the most "radical" of its members were actually rather sober folk who took the time to research important questions carefully and who believed that the complicated effort to find a fair balance for all parties involved with language services—translators, interpreters, facilitators and service consumers—is worthwhile. I joined, and from time to time I contribute my voice to the internal democratic debate on how best to serve a very diverse international community of colleagues and help them carry out their personal and professional missions in a better way.

So this year, once again, I will be one of a number presenting ideas for how to traverse our professional and political landscape in a secure, competent and ethical way. I'll be giving a fairly dry talk on reference management, teamwork and quality assurance in legal and financial translation—nerdy, sleep-inducing technical stuff for which attendees can leave their pitchforks at home—but there will be plenty for those who prefer verbal caffeine in the many other presentations from the many excellent speakers at this year's event.

IAPTI 2018 conference logo and link
Click the conference logo to go to IAPTI's conference information and registration site!

We’ll be celebrating International Translation Day together with talk on a range of relevant practical matters in translation and interpretation while exploring some of the profession’s hot topics and most urgent ethical questions.

On the Friday September 28 before the conference there are also some free workshops in English and Spanish for early registrants.

The literary translator Emily Wilson will be there as keynote speaker give us her perspective as the first woman to translate Homer's Odyssey into English. (It's a brilliant work - I'm reading it!) 




The author of the well-respected “red book” of medical terminology and cofounder of Cosnautas, Fernando Navarro, will be giving a workshop and a presentation in Spanish. 



And veteran linguistics sage David Crystal will also pay a virtual visit to share his latest thoughts.



I hope to see you at the Valencia conference and maybe share a taste of my sweet olives, a Greek delight reborn as a Portuguese culinary specialty. Have a look at what's ahead: https://www.iapti.org/SPconference/




































Jun 24, 2018

What's missing in most training videos: found!

Five years ago more or less I wrote a post in which I optimistically declared that if I ever did a one-hour webinar I would edit it down to perhaps twenty minutes. The real problem for me was that there was an ever-growing catalog of video instructional material from Kilgray, SDL and other sources but that it was virtually impossible to find parts of a video with specific points of interest without wasting a lot of time. Long teaching videos need a time index.

In a few blog posts after that, I created some manual indices for some of my videos, but all of these required manual scrolling to get to a particular point. And then, while using TechSmith Camtasia to touch up the recording of a recent webinar I did on PDF handling with iceni InFix, I stumbled across a menu item I had not noticed before:


Timeline markers? Hmmmm. Why would something like that be needed? Unless maybe one could build an index with them? And indeed that is the case.

When exporting a local MP4 video file or uploading a video production to YouTube, for example, the dialogs contain options to use these markers and their labels (the blue texts seen in the screenshot above on the video editing timeline) to build a table of contents.


Wow. This is exactly what I wanted to do for years. And Camtasia is used by a lot of people I know, so I wonder why nobody ever mentioned this possibility or how they could all overlook it. The result looked like this on YouTube:


All the blue number codes are hotlinks that jump the video to exactly that play time. This makes it easy to refer quickly to some important point of interest and skip the rest. Now I'm not going to go back and rework all of my old translation tool tutorial videos, but I'll use this feature for any new recordings, and I hope others do the same.

The video of the PDF talk is embedded below, but as you can see, the TOC isn't available with embeddings.


But there is sort of a workaround for that problem, using sharing links that include the starting time:

Click this graphic to go to 21:42 in the video

But that won't control an embedded video in a web page - like the one above. If anybody has a solution for that, I would love to hear it.