More than a billion people around the world celebrated the Chinese New Year, with fireworks, parties and parades – including a parade of horses in Sydney! The Spring Festival is now well underway, with festivities traditionally lasting for 15 days until the Full Moon, on February 14th this year.
Every day, interpreters and translators help doctors and emergency workers save lives. They enable multi-billion dollar deals, oil the wheels of diplomacy, and ease communication at international space stations. They also give a voice to sports stars, actors and beauty queens, and connect social media fans around the world.
Just as languages are constantly evolving and changing, the translation industry rarely stands still. 2013 has seen some fascinating developments in translation technology – spectacles that instantly translate text, anyone? But some of the most interesting work has involved new ways for human translators and machines to work together.
Twitter’s strict 140 character limit is either eroding English grammar or sparking creativity, depending on your point of view. Shortenings such as lol, imo, tmi and icymi are all becoming part of our everyday language.
The first wave of research in Machine Translation came to an abrupt end in 1966. An influential report concluded it had no prospect of success, and there were no economic reasons for using it anyway. Much of it was abandoned for the next decade, with resources poured into developing electronic dictionaries instead.
There are plenty of myths about exporting. Isn’t it risky for smaller businesses? And aren’t foreign markets much harder to crack than your domestic one?
It’s hard to avoid translation in our everyday lives. We find translations on food labels and instruction manuals, websites, and TV screens. Switch on the daily news, or turn over a bottle of shampoo, and the chances are the information will have been translated.
English is rapidly losing its status as the world’s lingua franca – but there’s no language to take over. As the world becomes more interconnected, global businesses are having to become multilingual to survive. But how can they reach the billions of people in the world, who speak more than 6000 languages between them?
With more and more businesses operating globally, localization has never been more important. The internet might have made the world seem smaller, but there are still cultural and linguistic borders to overcome. Speaking the right language can be the key to reaching new audiences both at home and abroad.
Languages and translation play a vital role in helping commercial companies, educational and non-profit organisations communicate and grow. With the theme “New Horizons”, the Localisation Research Centre Conference aimed to bring these sectors together, and explore this fast-changing field.