Interview with the mysterious translators of transeuro – Issue 1
What kind of people are actually translating for transeuro? Introverted people? Sincere people? Intelligent people? Philosophic people?
Until now except for the CEO our translators have been in the background. We would like to change this and introduce you to our translators with short interviews so you can get a better understanding of their talent, skill and unique personalities.
If you particularly like one of our translators you can designate them for your next order.
The first translator we introduce is Mr. O.M. that also researches machine translation.
Which languages do you translate and what is your special field?
I translate mainly from German to Japanese and sometimes from English to Japanese. My special field is chemistry.
Please tells us more about your career before and since you joined transeuro.
Before I joined I translated patent specifications, office actions and client letters at a patent and law office. I have been translating patent documents for 30 years now. My experience of translating office actions from my previous job is helpful for translating patent specifications.
Why did you choose to become a translator?
I started working shortly before the economic bubble in Japan. At this time my colleagues from university all wanted to join large companies but I was not interested in this career path. When searching for something interesting I found the German-Japanese translation company S&E. I applied and got accepted and have since then been involved in translation work. I remember that at the time I did not have a strong preference to become a translator but I think the fact that I continued the job until now means that it is the right job for me.
It has been two and a half years since transeuro, that originally was the translation department of a law firm, became a separate firm. Did your attitude and thoughts about translation change?
Of course, they changed. When working for a patent office it is your main objective to obtain a patent according to the wishes of the client. My main duties were translations but the final objective was the grant of a patent. When working at a translation company the finished translation is the final product and the quality of the translation is directly related to the evaluation of the company. I now concentrate even more on avoiding small mistakes and mistranslations to provide translations of even better quality.
How has translation changed since you started working?
It has changed a lot. At that time the internet had not yet spread widely so when you wanted to look up something you only had books to rely on. It was especially hard to look up German technical terms. With the internet, it is possible to look up terms much more efficiently.
You mainly translate in the field of chemistry. What is the charm of this field?
I liked chemistry and biology so I was assigned to the chemistry translation department. I focused on broadening my knowledge of the chemistry field. As translation is an unspectacular task I don’t think there is any special charm.
You are participating in the NIPTA machine translation research group. What do you think about the coexistence of translators and machine translation?
Since the invention of neural machine translation, the quality of machine translation has increased rapidly. But there are still many points that have to be improved, e.g. incomplete translation and disunity in terms. These errors still have to be corrected by humans. On the other hand, you get an instant result when using machine translation. I think that right now machine translation is not our enemy. I believe that we should use machine translation appropriately. We should also use translation assistance systems to increase efficiency.
What are the strengths of transeuro?
In short, I would say German and patent translation.
The CEO is talking about a “rocking!” translation company. What do you think this means？
That exceeds my understanding.
A message to the readers
As I mentioned earlier translation is an unspectacular task. I focus on research of terms and increasing the quality of my translations. For everyone aspiring to become a translator I would give them the advice not to give up and keep up their work. Slow but steady wins the race.