Sunday, December 16, 2007

Getting Acquainted

Welcome to my blog about language, language learning and translation

I'm a professor of Golden Age Spanish literature, in addition to being a professional translator. I was certified by the American Translators Association in 1993, for technical translation from English to Spanish.

Early in my translation career, I became involved with computer-assisted translation, sometimes also called machine-assisted translation. That was just after the Cold War ended and many interesting translation programs were emerging from previously classified efforts to find a way to eliminate the human translator, or in the case of speech, the interpreter. These efforts, by the end of the 1980s, had been mostly failures. However, enough progress had been made to begin to market commercial products that had the potential to increase a translator's speed as well as to enable translators to create and manage multilingual databases.

In 1992, I founded an in-house translation operation of The American National Red Cross, at their national headquarters in Washington, D.C. During the three years I administered this operation for regulated biomed documents, I created a 16,000-term dictionary utilizing a program called Globalink.

Besides that experience, I had previously worked doing some legal consecutive interpreting, in Philadelphia and D.C., but my first love has always been translating texts. I also have translated some arcane works, such as one on Polynesian archeoastronomy on Easter Island (Rapa Nui -- or O te pito o te henua - "the belly button of the world"!), as well as more mundane business, legal and financial documents. As a scholar, I published my translation of Santa Teresa de Avila's complete poetry and will soon publish a second edition.

From 2007 until 2009, I was involved with an exciting venture capital-backed project known as BrightHub, whose motto is Truth Before Commerce. We created a community of experts who make available their studied opinions about a wide range of consumer electronics, including language-learning and translation software. Not all opinions are equal, as anyone can see by surfing Amazon or other similar sites. If anyone can weigh in with an opinion, how is the consumer to sift through all the postings and find only the ones expressed by people whose business it is to know the product, service or industry? 

Please visit my reviews and register at the BrightHub site where you can find language-learning and translation software. There, you also can find over 250 mini-lessons for Spanish students and teachers! You don't have to buy anything to register. Whether or not you are a language expert of any kind, you are invited to click here.