Wednesday, 4 December 2013

About sources of information and reliability: T & I

This information is provided to you by the SPTIA (Syndicate of Professional Translators and Interpreters of Australia) as a courtesy. Please give back to this institution: You may, for instance, attend one of their courses ( seems to be an excellent choice).

Best unilingual dictionaries, English:

The first dictionary in this list, the Merriam-Webster, is extraordinary for you to find out the meaning of words in the English language: You can hear the sound of the word by clicking on the icon close to it, you can usually see the word in context, so that you can get rid of doubts regarding prepositions, for instance, and you can still see its antonyms.

Besides all that, you can still entertain yourself: They have quizzes on vocabulary, spelling, and things like that.

The second dictionary in the list is good. Sometimes the Merriam-Webster fails in providing us with a set of possible contexts for a word, and we then will find this sort of thing inside of the Oxford. The Oxford can also entertain you, and it has really difficult crosswords and spelling-bee sort of games. 

The third dictionary in this list will provide you with results from quite a few dictionaries. It took us a while to understand that sometimes it brings results from one dictionary and other times it brings results from several. 

If you are writing an essay, you can just click on the link to the right of the entry and get the citation in full (all styles) from it, that is, you just have to copy and paste that into your essay and you are done in terms of citation, what does simplify things quite a lot. 

Best unilingual dictionaries, Portuguese:

The first dictionary in this list will provide you with results for the Portuguese for Portugal before the unification and after it, so that it is definitely a wonderful resource. It also brings equivalent terms in the English language (and all other languages).

The second dictionary in this list is the best dictionary we have ever seen in terms of the Portuguese language, like the most complete.

Notwithstanding, we will find things on 1 that we do not find on 2 for some unknown reason.

Perhaps the online version is not yet as good as the hard copy?

We believe that really good translators would not usually go for a bilingual dictionary.

If in doubt about a particular term, one can try PROz or Translator's Cafe, for instance.

They are slowly becoming places of reference for all of us (T & I).

You can Google any doubt of yours and include PROz in the search box, for instance, to see what you get.

It is very likely that you get disappointed and that you commit a mistake if copying the results of PROz/Translator's Cafe as they are given to you, but if you are really experienced, you can gain something with consulting the source at least sometimes.

It is still the only place where we can find discussions on this sort of issue, and discussions that would interest us (created and managed by T & I professionals).


Google Translate can be of aid when you are doing an interpreting assignment, for instance, but it would only help beginners because the results are poor and frequently present gross mistakes.

We have just tried it for paper, for instance. We then got papel as an equivalent in the Portuguese language. If we were translating a document that had to do with research, however, paper would probably have artigo as an equivalent in the Portuguese language instead. 

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