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How to keep your costs in check when translating technical documents

How to keep your costs in check when translating technical documents

Over 50% of the projects we manage at MTT are translations of technical documents. For example we regularly handle

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5 top tips to help you ensure a quality technical manual translation

5 top tips to help you ensure a quality technical manual translation

Translating a technical manual is a specialist job, needing a clear understanding of the functions and features of the equipment being described. It’s not a job that any translator can take on, … Continue Reading »

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Interpreters for business meetings

Interpreters for business meetings

Interpreters cost money – so why should you have one?

When you’re looking at an overseas project, perhaps for the first time, you’ll want to keep a tight rein on expenses which can quickly sp… Continue Reading »

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What happens when you choose a cheap document translation?

What happens when you choose a cheap document translation?

We have all seen funny translations on sites like www.Engrish.com.

Indeed, we’ve all heard the classic stories of when major brands made an error in translation.

You may know for example t… Continue Reading »

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Why is learning Chinese difficult for Westerners?

Why is learning Chinese difficult for Westerners?

Learning Chinese is not easy, and there is a lot to consider when thinking about picking up a new language. One of the most difficult things for Westerners is learning a new alphabet and letters… Continue Reading »

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How do I ensure my non-English speaking employee has a fair hearing?

How do I ensure my non-English speaking employee has a fair hearing?

For HR staff working either freelance or in-house, there may be a time when they need to interview an employee whose first language is not English. How this interview is approached, regardless o… Continue Reading »

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Using subtitles to make the most of your video resources

Using subtitles to make the most of your video resources

If you’re spending time and resources creating a video to promote your company or to explain how to use a product, you really want to make the best use possible of the film you have created.

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How reliable is machine translation at the moment and what are its limitations?

How reliable is machine translation at the moment and what are its limitations?

The most popular machine translation software at the moment is Google Translate, although other programs are available. The software has improved remarkably over the last few years, with regular… Continue Reading »

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Top tips for working with a court interpreter

Top tips for working with a court interpreter

Interpreting in the courtroom is a highly specialist skill, requiring knowledge of the court system, complete impartiality and excellent listening skills.  Here are our top tips to help you get … Continue Reading »

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Medical interpreting - how should we handle this sensitive issue?

Medical interpreting - how should we handle this sensitive issue?

A visit to the doctors or the hospital can be worrying enough, but what happens if you don't speak good English?            

For a normal appointment, the health service will generally supply… Continue Reading »

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How do I make my marketing work overseas – getting the best from translation services.

How do I make my marketing work overseas – getting the best from translation services.

When you want to convince a potential customer from another country to buy your product or service, things are never straightforward.

Let’s face it, what works for “English speakers” also dif… Continue Reading »

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Why would I need a foreign language voiceover?

Why would I need a foreign language voiceover?

Your first thought might be “Surely it’s going to cost a lot and most of my target audience speak at least some English – they just want to look at the product and see how it works.”

The bene… Continue Reading »

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10 things that make a good technical translation

10 things that make a good technical translation

Here are a few tips to help you get a good technical translation:

Research – Background information should be provided if possible and the equipment and how it operates should … Continue Reading »

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How can I book an interpreter for a deaf client?

How can I book an interpreter for a deaf client?

Handling an appointment or meeting with a deaf customer might seem like a tricky prospect – here’s a guide to what the options are.

Depending on the needs of your client there may be one or m… Continue Reading »

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Why does legal translation go wrong?

Why does legal translation go wrong?

Incorrect legal translations cost time and money, so how do you make sure that it’s done right?

Legal translations require special attention due to the complex nature of the language being tr… Continue Reading »

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Why would I need an interpreter for my conference?

Why would I need an interpreter for my conference?

All my speakers and most of my audience speak good English – so why would I need a conference interpreter?

Many British conference organisers have come across an event at some point in their … Continue Reading »

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Why can’t I use Google Translate?

Why can’t I use Google Translate?

It’s free, fast and looks good to me – what could go wrong?

When you’re looking for a quick translation of a paragraph or a few sentences, Google Translate can typically provide you with a re… Continue Reading »

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How understanding is affected by different accents

How understanding is affected by different accents

I recently came across this article which talks about how our brains process information when it is delivered by someone from another culture.

It is a fascinating insight into how our brains … Continue Reading »

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Quick guide: translation technology

Quick guide: translation technology

Technology is taking over most areas of our lives, sometimes making things easier and sometimes making it a whole lot more difficult. Anyone who uses a computer will know how frustrating it can … Continue Reading »

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Cultural advice for business travel

Cultural advice for business travel

Cultural understanding is a key factor when you are travelling for business and are trying to make meetings go smoothly and productively. Building up a relationship of trust with your opposite n… Continue Reading »

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A quick guide to choosing a domain name for a translated website

A quick guide to choosing a domain name for a translated website

When you are thinking about having your website translated there are a multitude of options to consider.

Here’s a quick guide to just one of the important points – your new website’s domain n… Continue Reading »

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Time well spent - back to school

Time well spent - back to school

We’re helping at a local sixth form careers evening tomorrow – it’s something we’ve done for a long time and we think it’s a very important part of what we do as a company.

Why? It’s simple. … Continue Reading »

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5 facts about China – to celebrate Chinese New Year (Spring Festival)

5 facts about China – to celebrate Chinese New Year (Spring Festival)

1 Chinese New Year

This year, Chinese New Year starts on Monday 8th February – this time it’s the year of the monkey, the 9th animal in the 12 year cycle. Celebrations generally last for abou… Continue Reading »

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The impact of foreign literature in translation

The impact of foreign literature in translation

Historically, much of the literature around the world has been written in the primary language of the country that it is printed in. However this trend is starting to change.

According to Bus… Continue Reading »

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What does a Project Manager do?

What does a Project Manager do?

Your project manager is your first point of contact for all your language requirements.  Our PMs have a high level of technical knowledge and skills to ensure your project runs as smoothly as po… Continue Reading »

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What kinds of projects do we handle?

What kinds of projects do we handle?

Whenever I mention that I run a translation company, there’s usually a brief moment when you can see people wondering what’s involved. Are there banks of computers humming quietly, are there lin… Continue Reading »

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Professional translation resources

Professional translation resources

www.midlandtechnical.com.uk  has a wealth of resources if you are thinking about having a translation done or just want more information on how a translation company works.

If you’re a potent… Continue Reading »

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Want to save time and money when placing a translation project?

Want to save time and money when placing a translation project?

We’ve come up with a handy checklist to help you make sure you have all the information we’ll need before starting your translation project. This will ensure that we can get to work straight awa… Continue Reading »

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Localisation - getting it right

Localisation - getting it right

Domino’s Pizza has recently opened stores in South Africa after an effective campaign in India, where they showed how a successful localisation campaign should be run.

Domino’s invested time … Continue Reading »

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Useful guide to buying translation services

Useful guide to buying translation services

Our professional body, the Institite of Translation and Interpreting publishes a very useful guide to buying translation services in eleven languages.

You can download a copy here.

It's go… Continue Reading »

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So what did we translate in 2014?

So what did we translate in 2014?

If you’d like to know more about what our work actually entails, here are a few facts and figures from 2014 to give you a feel for what we do:

We handled translation projects in 36 languages,… Continue Reading »

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Anatomy of a Good Technical Translator

Anatomy of a Good Technical Translator

Here's what we think a good technical translator should look like - what do you think?


Anatomy of a Good Technical Translator

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Export Week - our top tips

Export Week - our top tips

To mark Export Week, here are 5 quick tips to help you make the best start possible with exporting:

1: Do your research – there are many ways to do research, from desk research on the in… Continue Reading »

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Sticky translation issues

Sticky translation issues

Things have been getting sticky at MTT recently – we’ve been translating about types of glue.

Cyanoacrylate glue is used for forensic purposes – think CSI and the special equipment that the p… Continue Reading »

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I’ve got 10 pages – how much will it cost to translate?

I’ve got 10 pages – how much will it cost to translate?

It’s surprising how many times we get asked to cost a document for translation without the chance to see it – “it’s 4 pages long” a customer might say, or “there’s about 30,000 words.” So why is… Continue Reading »

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International Translation Day – 30th September 2014 – A personal viewpoint

International Translation Day – 30th September 2014 – A personal viewpoint

International Translation Day is on 30th September – it was originally set up in 1953 and it coincides with the Feast of St Jerôme, the patron saint of translators (and also librarians).

St J… Continue Reading »

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It's not just about the manual

It's not just about the manual

Often an initial enquiry from a company will be for a technical manual to be translated to go with a product being shipped abroad. However, that’s just part of the story for some of our clients.… Continue Reading »

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Got a project like this?

Got a project like this?

Got a project like this?

Projects we have handled

What do all these translation projects have in common?

  • The translators needed an in depth understanding of the subject field to create a document which… Continue Reading »
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What's it like being a translation project manager?

What's it like being a translation project manager?

Language students and some of our clients sometimes wonder what it’s like to be a project manager in a translation company – so here’s a brief overview of a typical day at MTT HQ.

Arrive at t… Continue Reading »

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Export week 7 – 11 April 2014

Export week  7 – 11 April 2014

It’s Export Week this week – we’re half way through and there have been great events going on up and down the country, from seminars to Facebook Q and A sessions.

We took part in a session t… Continue Reading »

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Haybridge languages conference - spreading the word.

Haybridge languages conference - spreading the word.

Here's Sue Clark presenting to Year 9 students at our local Haybridge Gifted & Talented Linguists conference a couple of weeks ago. Over 90 students attended the day from across 3 schoo… Continue Reading »

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Three things to avoid to ensure translation quality

Three things to avoid to ensure translation quality

Here are three simple things to avoid to help you make sure you get the best possible translation.

1 – Incomplete, ambiguous source texts

It’s a myth to think that the quality of the … Continue Reading »

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Why can't young people be bothered with languages?

Why can't young people be bothered with languages?

At a recent school’s career fair, I was once again impressed by the interest the students (in this case aged about 14) showed in various careers. But although the Army stand, the engineering sta… Continue Reading »

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Specialist translators – why bother?

Specialist translators – why bother?

The team of translators at MTT are specialists in their chosen fields - why is this important to you the customer?

A specialist will have in-depth knowledge, qualifications and often relevant… Continue Reading »

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Film studio and video services – with or without translation, the choice is yours

Film studio and video services – with or without translation, the choice is yours

We’re lucky at MTT to have a fully fitted out film studio on site, with full production services, green screen, 3D suite, voiceover and subtitling facilities.

Whether you’re looking to produc… Continue Reading »

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Speak my language

Speak my language

We know that not everyone speaks English - at least, not well enough to make an informed decision on technical details, or commercial negotiations.

They may be fine with day to day chat or h… Continue Reading »

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Ten top tips for getting the best translation

Ten top tips for getting the best translation
  1. Allow enough time – rush jobs are rushed. Allow at least a day per 2000 words of original text if at all possible.
  1. Typeset documents need to be properly checked – word breaks nee… Continue Reading »
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The great divide

The great divide

The great divide - US v UK English on the sports field

Unsurprisingly perhaps, there is a minefield of problems awaiting the unwary sports translator.

Not only do we have a variety of diff… Continue Reading »

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We've moved!

We've moved!

We are now settling in following our move to the Europa Building on the Hoo Farm Industrial Estate in Kidderminster. Our move sees us join with a bigger group of companies in one building, inclu… Continue Reading »

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International awareness - more important than speaking a language?

International awareness - more important than speaking a language?

A booklet dropped through our letterbox recently from HSBC. Inside were quotes and articles, statistics and pie charts concerning international trade, with a  particular emphasis on mid-sized co… Continue Reading »

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Our number one FAQ – how do we monitor quality?

Our number one FAQ – how do we monitor quality?

This has to be one of the most popular questions that we get asked – and it’s obviously one that is key to our company’s success.

One of the first jobs we do in January each year is look at o… Continue Reading »

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Think before you write....

Think before you write....

If you ever get the chance to write a document you know is going to be translated, take a few moments before you put pen to paper.

 

A few minutes spent thinking about how to write your te… Continue Reading »

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Separated by a common language

Separated by a common language

The phrase above is part of a quotation attributed to playwright George Bernard Shaw, which describes the differences between British and American English. When requesting translation services, … Continue Reading »

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4 easy ways to make your translation projects hassle free.

4 easy ways to make your translation projects hassle free.

Working with a translation company can be a bit daunting – how do you know what they need, how do they work, what needs translating and how long will it all take?

To help answer these questio… Continue Reading »

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Humerous translations have a serious side

Humerous translations have a serious side

If you have been on a holiday or business trip abroad recently, the chances are that you will have seen some awkward phrasing on a restaurant menu or an advert that sounds strange in English. Yo… Continue Reading »

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The story of the potent pen

The story of the potent pen

This week, I thought I'd share some of the consequences of bad translation. Sometimes, even large, wildly successful companies underestimate the value of transferring their message to a foreign … Continue Reading »

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Quality Systems – time well invested or a hassle you can live without?

Quality Systems – time well invested or a hassle you can live without?

A recent enquiry for highly specialised, critical translation project had the potential for headaches before we even began when we were faced with completing a stringent supplier quality audit.

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Mr Vacuum Cleaner and the perils of Google Translate

Mr Vacuum Cleaner and the perils of Google Translate

We sometimes use Google Translate to get a gist translation for example to check the sense of a quick email. We did laugh yesterday however when we had a short piece of Polish to cross check and… Continue Reading »

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Rain, mizzle or drizzle....

Rain, mizzle or drizzle....

I came across this article on BBC News yesterday, which talks about the number of words we have in the English language for rain. Considering the amount of rain we've seen over the past month it… Continue Reading »

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A Place in Europe - a challenge for schools

A Place in Europe - a challenge for schools

It's almost time for the Place in Europe Competition - an annual event that has been sponsored by us here at MTT for the last 3 years and one which has given us a lot of pleasure and surprises.

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Made in the Midlands Exhibition - the big question...

Made in the Midlands Exhibition - the big question...

MTT were delighted to be able to exhibit at the MIM exhibition yesterday at the Banks’s Stadium in Walsall.

Interest in our translation services was keen from a wide range of companies and we… Continue Reading »

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Made in The Midlands Exhibition 24/4/12

Made in The Midlands Exhibition 24/4/12

Come and see the MTT Team at the Made in the Midlands Exhibition in Walsall!

Made in the Midlands is a leading organisation acting as a platform for manufacturing firms in the region to inter… Continue Reading »

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The cult of the hyperpolyglot

The cult of the hyperpolyglot

I really enjoyed this article and was amazed at the skills shown by the people interviewed. My professional languages are French and German, in which I feel quite happy to chat away, and I have … Continue Reading »

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Translation costs in the NHS – value for money or an outrage?

Translation costs in the NHS – value for money or an outrage?

The health think tank looking into the costs made no mention of the volume of work carried out for this price, or indeed the quality of the work produced.

They did however make a suggestion t… Continue Reading »
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Specialist Services

Specialist Services

The vast majority of MTT’s work is for standard translation or interpreting projects, but just occasionally we get asked to work on something a little more out of the ordinary.

One of the mor… Continue Reading »
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We've moved office - but what did we find?

We've moved office - but what did we find?

We’ve finally moved into our new offices!

It’s really nice to be in warm, new surroundings and feel organised ready for 2012. Our contact details will remain the same as we’ve just relocated … Continue Reading »
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Roald Dahls' 50th anniversary

Roald Dahls' 50th anniversary

It's interesting to think that the works of this author, born in Wales to Norwegian parents, are now available in 49 languages, for millions of people to enjoy.

Language plays such an importa… Continue Reading »

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Variety is the spice of life (Part Two)

Variety is the spice of life (Part Two)

A normal day in the MTT office will see us managing projects for the translation of technical manuals, contracts, terms and conditions, brochures, information sheets, press releases and letters.… Continue Reading »

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Black Country Chamber Awards

Black Country Chamber Awards

Needless to say we are excited about the awards - we're up against 7 other professional firms for the Service Company award - the only one that really fits what we do.

We hope to demonstrate … Continue Reading »

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What's it like to work at MTT - guest post from Megan

What's it like to work at MTT - guest post from Megan

My name is Megan and I’m here at Midland Technical for a month-long internship to build on my skills - I recently finished a degree in Translation with French and German - and discover more abou… Continue Reading »

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