Thursday, 24 August 2017

Historic Moments: VITS

From  VITS:

Elizabeth Compton, CEO of the Victorian Interpreting and Translation Service, said 

Each and every day, we see the impact language makes, allowing people to live life without limits and opening doors for organisations and businesses to speak in any language, and reach any customer. When all people living in Australia are able to reach any service or business anytime in any language, then we have succeeded in our mission.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

French Joke brings a joke written in the French language. I found all interesting and complex. I will copy the main text here for better visualization:

J’ai passé un coup de fil à un ami, et je lui ai demandé ce qu’il faisait.
Il m’a répondu qu’il travaillait sur:

Le traitement aqua-thermique des céramiques, du verre, de l’aluminium et de l’acier sous un environnement contraint.
J’ai été très impressionné… 
Et pour mieux comprendre, je lui ai demandé des précisions et il m’a déclaré qu’en fait:
Il fait la vaisselle à l’eau chaude sous la surveillance de sa femme…⁠⁠⁠⁠

English translation
I called a friend, and asked him what he was doing.
He answered that he was working on:
The aqua-thermal treatment of ceramics, glass, aluminum and steel in a constrained environment.

I was very impressed …
And to understand better, I asked him for details and he told me that in fact:
He was doing the dishes with hot water under the supervision of his wife… ⁠⁠⁠⁠ 

Keep It Simple in Translation

I think this is an excellent example of topic for debate, but I do have a choice, a line I think we should follow: Keep it simple when it is simple in both T & I and simplify if it is possible to do so when it is I. 

The expression our fellow, Rosemary Polato, came up with is, with no doubts, super correct and super elegant. Just read 

The original expression did not contain any Latin, however: It was written in plain Portuguese. Lots of people have defended the end of the use of the Latin Language. I think that might be the choice of the majority. It seems to me that the languages we use in human kind are incredibly complex. So much so, I am proposing the simplification of the entire structure, universalization. See:

I think that we always worry about Accuracy in Translation. I have been putting my head to work in that direction and got to Translation Techniques and the term Cultural Translation with a lot of effort. 

The efforts are always in the direction of keeping the tune of the original text, and we did not have writing that was as elegant as that in the original text, so that, also from that point of view, the choice is not the best, even though it would be absolutely correct. 

Transito, in English, means traffic or transit most of the time. Em Julgado means nothing in reality. We get the meaning from hearing the expression. Em means In. Julgado means Judged. In Judged, literal translation, means the same as Em Julgado, that is, nothing. Perhaps they got to that expression from refining applications, if you understand me. It is like this: Someone said Esta Bem? That means Is That OK? They started repeating that. Lots of people. They finally got lazy and said Ta Bem? instead. Now people learned the new expression, which replaced the other, short for the other, and Ta Bem? would now be used in place of Esta Bem for short. With time and continuous plus frequent use, they finally simplified it to maximum, to its current shape, Ta? In this way, if a foreigner learns the Portuguese language, they don't see much sense in having ta, but upon being taught the usage, they understand the sense and apply with no difficulties. The same happens with our generation, which did not create Transito Em Julgado. That means the suit has already gone through every instance that is possible, so that the decision is now considered final by the courts. Any expression that escapes this sense by much would be wrong translation. 

See the explanation in Portuguese (
Diz-se que a demanda transitou em julgado quando a sentença tornou-se definitiva, não podendo mais ser modificada, seja por ter transcorrido o prazo para a interposição de eventuais recursos, seja por não caber mais recurso sobre ela.

They probably mean that it went with the tag Judged from beginning to end of the list of courts and applicable processes, so maybe even possible appeals, so that it has passed, just like a car in the traffic, from beginning to end, as Judged. 

Another PROz fellow went with matter adjudged. See (

With legal issues, we have to be extra careful though. See what the experts say about matter adjudged (

From four items that form the definition of adjudged matter in the legal metier, we get to satisfy one or at most two in this case. What creates concern are the items in the middle of the list, 

 no appeal was made against the judgement within the canonical time-limit;

 the trial has been abated or renounced in the appeal grade;

It is possible, unfortunately, in Brazil, that appeals have been made inside of the limit, and the process kept on progressing inside of the legal scale. At least in Brazil I am sure this expression is used in a loser sense when it comes to those outside of the legal metier. 

Now we can check the proper use of the term by perhaps trying another source of legal terms in Brazil, since the previous one was already a specialized source. Let's do that.

From, a tribunal's website, of the Federal District and territories, we get:

Once more, we do not have the satisfaction of all items. We could still try one more source. Let's do that. confirms what we said so far, so unfortunately it does not look like we can replace one expression with the other. It could be that Brazilians had poor capabilities of expressing the definition of this expression and, in reality, it meant all that, but I myself have not heard of these four conditions ever. The expert, Alessandra, still mentions cases in which one can reopen the case. talks about expiration of the last deadline for appeals that is applicable before the process can become something that could be associated with Transito Em Julgado. It actually seems to me that a process in Brazil can become final in terms of decision on first instance if the magistrates so wishes, like certain conditions satisfied or something. All that I meant here is that we do not need two processes at all, but the definition in the English language seems to demand at least two (first item). In this case, it would be impossible to defend that both expressions mean the same. 

When we look at, we understand that the sense 1.3 of the first dictionary from TheFreeDictionary would have been the closest to what they legally meant in Australia in terms of this expression. It is easy to see that lexicon-wise the equivalency exists. The problem is realistically the legal metier. If we translate a technical document, however, we do have to obey what they decided, and that is the reason for some places to have their own glossaries and make sure interpreters can access those. 

We notice that the sense 1.1 of the lexicon we have used in the paragraph above this one has nothing to do with the main idea, that of the final decision, so that I myself would advise my fellows not to use adjudged matter as a replacement for the expression in translation. When the text is technical we really need the exact idea conveyed. In this case, we can increase the amount of words if necessary to pass the same idea, so that we may end up even with footnotes, as said many times by me, but we should not lose the original meaning or run the risk of losing it as we translate from one language to another. 

In noticing that there is no other possible choice, we are obliged to sign under the choice of Rosemary, Latin or not, and, this time, contrary to what we could expect, there is no Quodlibet (no spread, I am trying to joke, to connect this to what we see in Logic, Ex Falso). 

Now, there is a way in which we could sustain the use of adjudged matter in this situation: If what had been meant in the English language were or instead of and, so that if any of those items had been satisfied, any of them, we could have adjudged. 

In this case, we'd better check possible equivalency between the Latin expression and adjudged matter. Let's do that.

Oh, well, I found better now. See (

Now things became a little worse, since Res Judicatam, which seems to be the correct Latin version of Em Julgado, seems to be the same as adjudged matter. These are American lawyers. 

It is a case in which our powers as translators seem to be realistically small. If I were to decide things based on my current knowledge, supposing all I know is what I see here, I would appeal to footnotes and perhaps write Considered Judged or Finalized Matter. I still found Matter of Record as an equivalent expression for Rem Judicatam online. It all sounds wrong, if you ask me. Matter of Record should be anything that passes through a court. Adjudged Matter should be anything that has been judged by any court. Em Julgado, however, is something that is final somehow. So is Res Judicatam. 

To be sincere with you, I decided to stretch and Res Judicatio is Latin but not Res Judicatam according to It is also possible Judicatum, but not Judicata according to 

For today, and for being sure that I previously used Res Judicata trusting another PROz fellow in terms of the Latin language, I will stick to the Ozzie rules: Keep it basic. I think they write and say Finalized Matter down here, regardless, like they may be Legal Aid lawyers, judges or clients. That is how Brazil takes it, I reckon. So, Finalized Matter is my choice from here onward. I don't like Latin, I cannot become an expert in this language, it seems to me that it is not always that experts choose things in the best way as possible, referring here to the lawyers, and people who write the websites for the courts, and the meaning may be conveyed in an accurate manner via footnotes. 

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

God and the Lexicon

Lexicon tells us a bit about the work of the lexicographers. The sigmatoid god is what Kory Stamper decides to mention. I also talk about them when I write about The Sorites Paradox. Here she proves to people like Dominic Hyde that the work is way more than Mathematics: She thinks about it, she consults professionals in the area where they most use the sigmatoid, and sometimes she takes more than 6 months to get to a final resolution. This is obviously something similar to translation, which is exactly what I said to Trevor in the end of 2001: I found it easy to solve The Sorites because I have broad formation, or better, specific formation that is deep in several and very different areas, such as Mathematics, IT, and Language. I do understand their difficulties, since they think like the usual Brazilian academic: They spent their lives studying only one discipline. All they can see there is what they studied. In their case, it is Logic. The problem is that the problem itself, The Sorites, involves way more than that. I have said that in my work: Our solution has to involve at least as many areas and subareas as the own problem after it is rewritten in a scientific manner. That is also why I wrote Words for Science

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Sunday, 28 May 2017

Why Do You

Nobody would believe what language can become or actually is until they work with interpreting. And they said: On this fine, it is written that the cause was pouring cement in the drain. He goes: No. I used vacuum cleaner, I washed the ground, I cleaned all. They say it was cement, but it was not. They go: Why do you say the issue was about cement? I go: Because I said it. Perhaps I committed a mistake. Me, your interpreter. They go again: Why do you say the issue was about cement? I go: Sorry, it is perhaps my mistake. What did you say it was? He goes: They thought it was cement, but it wasn't. They go: Why do you say the issue was about cement? I go: Sorry. Probably my mistake, the interpreter's. I told him that. That was not what you said? They finally go: What made they think the issue was cement? Was it concrete or glue? Ah, so perhaps that is what they meant the first time: What made them, those who produced the fine, think it was cement. Jesus! The accent was that of a native person, native woman. Things are pretty hard. What she actually meant was why those who fined him thought that it was cement. Oh, dear!

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Friday, 5 May 2017

On Some Managerial Issues Affecting the T & I Industry:

A Quick Chat

Director Sulaiman Khan Zadran

Deputy Director
Project Manager
Chief of Staff
Strategic Communication Manager
Pashto, Dari, Persian & English
Member of International Translators Association

Masters in Translation/Languages
M.A Political Science
Kabul, Afghanistan

Tel 0093777585384

Doctor Marcia Pinheiro

Lecturer at IICSE University
Certified Translator and Interpreter
Portuguese & English
NAATI  40296         
Member: PROz, RGMIA, Ancient Philosophy

Ph.D. in Philosophy and Mathematics
Master in Philosophy
Certified TESOL/TEFL professional
Licentiate in Mathematics
PO Box 12396 A’Beckett St
Melbourne, VIC, AU, 8006

Tel 0416915138

Director Sulaiman, I understand you have to manage a few translators at your agency. I have been working in this industry for quite a while now. I started in Brazil, South America, decades ago. I also have courses in management and experience that allows me to state that I am a really good manager if results are what matters. Because of this background, I believe our discussion will be of value to the industry, the T & I Industry. One of the things that attract my attention is assessment and selection. I wonder if you are concerned about ethical issues. 

Doctor Marcia, The T & I Industry is expanding on a daily basis due to the increase in integration level of different cultures into one another and the industry requires bringing diversities together for overcoming the demand of translation, which can literally raise concerns about ethical issues during assessment and selection. To avoid ethical issues we need to respect the autonomy and choice of translators from all cultures and use organizational behavior to its highest levels in the Industry. The supervisors and Translation PMs should look after the skills and experience of a translator instead of discriminate them for being from a different society. 

Director Sulaiman, I suppose you are talking about the so many ways in which we can use the organization in terms of imposing behavior that is expected. If so, we can talk about how the managers can make everyone proceed in an ethical manner, and that is a good proposal. We then do have to think of the role of supervisors and PMs, that is, of the functions that those usually have. Looking for the translator and then worrying about whether they are keeping or increasing their range of skills and depth of experience seems to be a good start. The fact that they come from a different background should create excitement and interest in us rather than the will of treating them in a less favorable way, I totally agree with you. There is a concern with the amount of demand, and NAATI, for instance, I was told, has been obliged to accept people without even considering assessment because of how rare their language is in Australia. I tend to think that the best way to deal with diversity is conversations, time to mingle, space to think about things, so say events and things of the type. I do see our class, of Ts & Is, as a much sacrificed class in those regards: We seem not to be able to talk much about what most matters, so say levels of compliance and most adequate wording for the ethical guidelines. 

Doctor Marcia, I agree with the points you made on how managers can make everyone proceed in an ethical manner and more. I also believe in an idea which can help managers and supervisors of every industry to avoid discrimination against their employees; We have similarities between our employees/translators as the tool to build more friendly environment and closeness among them, while on the other hand we have the differences which generate the whole issue and I believe in replacing it with respect. Managers should ethically guide employees of Ts & Is or any other industry to avoid discrimination. When it comes to business and an official environment we don't always have to look at it officially, but rather to provide some space for ethics, friendship, and as you mentioned events of different types. When we deeply think about ethical issues we also come to the point that it is not just the managers who are responsible for this, a translator or interpreter from a different culture should be more careful than the organization not to put himself in a condition to be discriminated. Minorities are the people who become upset very easily, maybe no one has an ethical issue with you but rather they might have given you some negative feedback because of your work performance while you would be thinking that you are being discriminated. Therefore, I would call that the duty and responsibility of one and all.

Director Sulaiman, the points you make are of major importance: I always believed in managing by example. In Australia, they do not seem to care much about that, but I imagine that, in places like India, because of the influence of people like Gandhi, they must do their best to always behave in an ideal way when occupying the position of manager. I also became aware of the One Minute Manager. This is a book used to teach management in Australia, and I do embrace their philosophy: one praise, then one reprimand. I do think that is a good strategy, since it leaves the person with something good, and, perhaps, because of that, with the will to invest in improving their performance. One of the main issues in my mind, when it comes to ethics, and you must know that my concern is as high as to make me create a course on the topic (, is crime: Believe it or not, the amount of crimes, and even atrocities, committed by some translators and interpreters against others, and even by managers against interpreters and translators, is realistically not low. I actually know of people who exist practically in full slavery, with all members of their company knowing about it. Whilst publishing what they see in the press would save the life of the professional, and they can certainly do that, they watch and participate in the festival of atrocities in First World Democracy for even more than 16 years in a row and do nothing. In places like the Middle East, things must be much worse than in Australia, Brazil or the United States, I imagine, since the official regimen allows for all that. I got to know about things and I denounce for these spectacular 16 years plus with no success. I, unfortunately, do not possess any vehicle that could be meaningful in this case, so say a newspaper, a TV channel or anything like that. I would hope that you, as a manager, despite your religious choices and origins, would do the impossible to make sure the rights of the person are fully restored and they enjoy maximum justice, compensation, and reversion of damages. I definitely think there is nothing more important, also in terms of management, than being able to put ourselves in the shoes of the other. You mention another point that matters a lot to me: Managers should guide employees so that there is no discrimination. I definitely think that both translators and interpreters should be normal employees, not casual or contract ones. With this, we would be able to have even daily meetings with them and influence their behavior in a more meaningful way. I wonder about the reasons to keep them under the situation of casual or contract when there is enough work in their language to keep them busy for 40 hours per week.

Doctor Marcia, let me continue by agreeing with your idea that translators and interpreters should be normal employees as this is a field where diversity exists to the highest level and it's very difficult to deal with it remotely. I was a translator and interpreter for more than 7 years in Afghanistan and India both as a normal employee and on a freelance basis. I had faced clients and companies from different regions while most of them were western. I did feel discriminated with the client I worked as a freelance translator even by my first and last name, though I am not sure about the idea my clients had during the time but being a translator with a different culture, religion, language and everything else, I had that automatic feeling even before approaching a client, the feeling that I might be discriminated, but that would finally and unexpectedly end up with a great friendship. There wouldn't be any of the so-called discrimination. I thought about the real reason behind it and I believe it was the Translation Project Managers who were treating me as a member of their team and it was the company who had put restrictions against discrimination in their manual policies as well as the training they give to their managers about the best ways to deal with an employee from a different region. The leaders of an organization should take ethics as serious as the business that they are making money with and then only they can build a progressive network. Peter Drucker says Culture eats strategy for breakfast, which emphasize on the idea that we must pay serious attention to ethics in our official and business environments otherwise it will not just make us upset but it can also take us far from our goals and strategies.  Therefore, translation and interpretation companies should carefully look after ethical and cultural issues both for broader business, network, income and having happy translators and interpreters from different regions around the world. 

Director Sulaiman, it has been a pleasure conversing with you here, and I am sure I would like to hear more from you, especially in what regards the topics one of us started here but the other did not have the opportunity to address. You seem to talk about friendship between interpreters, translators, and clients. As you know, friendship with clients is seen as a threat to impartiality, so that it is not really advisable. Of course, as a director or manager, you would not be tied to those rules, especially if not providing linguistic services yourself, but, as an interpreter, we would have to avoid intimacy with the client at any expense. I would agree if you said we need to rethink some items that are currently in the ethical codes since that is one of the issues I mention in my online course. Is that the case, please? Once more, thank you very much for your generosity and contribution to the T & I industry: Each article helps us inspire others to think, organize things, and act.

Doctor Marcia, yes, that's very true for many cases to rethink some items in the ethical code and as well as avoiding intimacy with the client. I would like to add one more point about discrimination against freelance translators and interpreters; as the industry is becoming more dependent on freelancers from all over the world who work from their homes or small private offices and discrimination against them can be more likely to take place due to a big amount of diversity and they do not have the opportunity to meet or spend time with staff members of the company physically. Let’s talk about a company which handles translation for more than 50 languages, they probably cannot handle in-house linguists for all language pairs and would need to reach out to translators from different countries. These companies need to have managers who understand the ethical values of a work environment and should be examined against discrimination during the recruitment by asking about their ideas indirectly on the subject. It is very natural that a translator or interpreter would be as nice with the project managers as possible for their employment security and for not losing the opportunity and for addressing their ethical concerns a company must be very careful during the recruitment process, not just for the purpose of preventing discrimination, but for running the business in a great manner, they need to hire open-minded project managers who have broader ideas and can put an end point on ethical issues towards their translators and interpreters. While this case is applicable for regular or normal translators too. Thank you for sharing your great ideas on the topic, an article can change lives of many professionals and can give ideas on one’s ongoing but remained unsolved issues. 

Monday, 3 April 2017

Reading Letter by Letter

Today I got a really nice officer asking my client to read a certain line from a board and reproduce the letters on a piece of paper. I got clients that had to read letters from boards before, but nobody ever had this idea. They were usually medical tests. This was for driving. The thing is that some of my clients cannot really spell, so that they say Greek I, for instance, instead of Y (in Portuguese), they also say Gã Gã, which is perhaps the sound of G in Portuguese, instead of G. We do get used to those, but takes us a while. It is all very difficult the first time. This system, of asking them to write down the letters they see, works well for both sides, I reckon. In this way, what is being tested is exclusively their eye sight, and that is their intention with the test, they all say. 

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Friday, 31 March 2017

Family Name and Australia

Today and yesterday I had problems with my passport because the Australian systems demand that I write my family name then my given names. First of all, they only have surnames and names in the Brazilian system. In second place, traditionally, in Brazil, your kids will inherit one name from the mother (last one) and one name from the father (last one), so that the name of what I myself call family is only the last name I have. Our family of origin, however, let's say, had both names, the one that came from my mother (last one) and the one that came from my father (last one). That could also be told to be my family. In this way, family name is a very confusing expression and, as such, could never be used in documents, which are supposed to be objective things. Given names, first name, middle name, and last name, I notice, is something that will always confuse those who come from Brazil. There we have one more thing that is absolutely wrong and should definitely be simplified: Why doesn't Australia use surname and name? That sounds simpler and way less confusing. 

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