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In my quest to better understand the opportunities and challenges of the African translation industry, I recently traveled from West to East Africa. Because the global demand for African language translations continues to increase, I felt it was important to assess and demystify this market. It’s clear that the localization industry is alive and vibrant in Africa. Linguists are mainly involved in diplomatic, governmental, religious, tourism and humanitarian work. Some commercial work is also done for a variety of industries such as global consulting, mining, financial and technology, among others. The most common translation requests in Africa are for English, Arabic,...
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Jean Gachot, the major business developer in the career of Systran, has died. Jean Gachot, who acquired Systran and widely developed their machine translation system, passed away on February 17 at the age of 96, missing the company’s 50th anniversary by just one year. The remarkable history of Systran can be attributed to a large extent to Mr. Gachot, who developed a passion for machine translation in the 80s of the last century. At this time he met Peter Toma, the legendary inventor of one of the first tested and demonstrated commercial MT engines, and, in 1985, struck a deal that...
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On 11 November, Daimler hosted an Automotive Translation Roundtable organized by TAUS and berns language consulting. Translation managers from eight large automotive and three large IT companies participated in the one day meeting. Goals for the day were to get the pulse of the translation sector and learn from each other. What do we have in common? Where do we differ? It comes down to this: we are not so different. And what’s more: we must work together across the translation sector to create a common ecosystem.    We Are All In This Together The main takeaway of the Automotive Roundtable...
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In April 2016, TAUS returned  to China after a couple of years absence. Being back in Beijing opened new perspectives on translation in China that many of us had perhaps not expected. China typically copies what others have already built and done before them. Fast trains are modeled to the TGV in France, electric cars are inspired by Tesla, and fashion in China closely follows the trends around the world. We also discovered that most language service providers in China are not yet using Translation Memory (TM) software and it was implied that further developments cannot be made until they are...
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What makes a good conference? If you ask me, the answer is: purpose, people and program. As simple as that. Let’s start with ‘purpose’: you have to have a good reason to make people travel from all over the world to a single location and have them spend a few days of their precious time together. As Eric Liu, General Manager of Alibaba Language Services, said in his keynote at the TAUS Annual Conference in Portland last week: it all starts with a mission - “Preparing for a future that is without language barriers”. The same goes for TAUS and the...
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