User talk:Stephen G. Brown

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January 2016[edit]

Thank you![edit]

Thank you for approving my whitelisting. Tharthan (talk) 15:57, 9 January 2016 (UTC)

You’re welcome. —Stephen (Talk) 16:18, 10 January 2016 (UTC)

Insistent anons at bilááh and biʼoh[edit]

Hello Stephen --

A couple anon IPs have edited these two entries to essentially reverse the meaning of the usage examples. Would you be kind enough to have a look? I reverted the first time, but with it happening again, I wonder if it's a native speaker whose edit summaries are just a bit sparse. ‑‑ Eiríkr Útlendi │Tala við mig 18:29, 5 February 2016 (UTC)

This has been going on since last June at bilááh. They could very well be the same person: they all seem to geolocate to the same part of the Phoenix, AZ metropolitan area, with the same ISP. Chuck Entz (talk) 19:09, 5 February 2016 (UTC)
Just to make absolutely sure, I will ask the experts one more time. I await their answer. —Stephen (Talk) 09:44, 6 February 2016 (UTC)
Okay, I have their answers. It’s the same as the answers I got the last time I asked about this. All of these people are Navajo who speak the language as their first language:
(Stephen Brown) A Diné from Phoenix tells me that I have this backwards. The question is about this sentence:
>Shijáád éí nijáád bilááh áníłnééz.
What does it mean? Whose legs are longer, shijáád or nijáád?
And also this sentence:
>Shigaan éí shijáád bi’oh áníłtso.
What is the meaning? Which is shorter, shigaan or shijáád?
(Adrian B.) My legs are longer than yours. My arms are not as long as my legs.
(Nova M.) 1st sentence:
My legs are longer than your legs
2nd sentence:
My arms are shorter than my legs
Biʼoh means "limited" but in this sentence it means "comes short of"
(Janice C.) Nova M. did an excellent explanation.
(Stephen Brown) Ahéheeʼ tʼáá ánółtso, that is how I understand it, too:
For some reason, this guy was insisting that the translation was wrong. He says that it means:
>Your legs are longer than my legs.
>My legs are shorter than my arms.
I don't know why he says that we're wrong.
(Lee R.) Nova M. is Correct.
(Marley T.) The first sentence says: "my legs are longer than your legs." And the second sentence says: "my arms are shorter than my legs."
(Jerry H.) Maybe they felt that it should be the obviative yilááh. Dunno. When it's something attached to yourself, obviative doesn't seem right. In this context, I would agree with the others.
(Melanie R.-K.) Perhaps a better way to express these might be:
Nijáád bił ałhąąhgo shí shijáád hózhǫ́ nineez.
Shigaan éí shijáád tʼáá bichʼįʼ áníłnééz.


Is it common for Speakers to drop the final vowel? I have a song that appears to have that. If that’s the case, we could modify the pronunciation to /ˈno.t͡ʃ(e)/. --Romanophile (contributions) 01:27, 15 February 2016 (UTC)

In Mexican Spanish, a final unstressed [-e] after [-ch-] is often whispered, or even deleted. —Stephen (Talk) 16:37, 16 February 2016 (UTC)

Telugu citations[edit]

I have started giving Citations for Telugu words from Mahakavi Dairies of Gurajaza Appa Rao. But I doubted about my own translations. Now I found a book by Charles Philip Brown [1] published in 1829. But it is poetic work of Vemana, he has translated to English. I have started using it like Citations:కంచు. Is it right or not; Is there any difference between prose and poetry in the presentation in Wiktionary.--Rajasekhar1961 (talk) 07:36, 16 February 2016 (UTC)

Citations:కంచు looks good to me. There is no difference is how prose and poetry are treated, except for one thing: Since poetry has distinct lines, the lines of poetry are separated by the solidus symbol (స్లాష్ చిహ్నం), "/", like this: Hence no force, however great, / can stretch a cord, however fine, / into a horizontal line / which is accurately straight. —Stephen (Talk) 17:31, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
I must say, I respect your work on Telugu around here @Rajasekhar1961. Also, welcome back! —Aryamanarora (मुझसे बात करो) 23:44, 17 February 2016 (UTC)
Thank you sir. I must thank Stephen G. Brown for his timely help. Stephen sir, can we improve this template to take us to the reference page in the book directly, like you did for Charles Phillip Brown Telugu-English dictionary {{R:te:CPB|362|head=గాజు}}.--Rajasekhar1961 (talk) 14:33, 18 February 2016 (UTC)
I might be able to make a template for that book, but it may not be dependable. That’s a printed book (printed on paper), and searching it requires comparing the images of each letter. It can't search for Telugu words, only English words. For example, you could search for these words: The light man will always. —Stephen (Talk) 05:45, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
There are two references of this book; one in 1829[2] and the other in 1911[3]. You can link to the page number from the Citation.--Rajasekhar1961 (talk) 10:59, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
With 1829, I can see the book and I can search for English words, but I cannot search for page numbers. With 1911, I can only see the first page, and a lot of the Telugu words are unreadable, and I can't search for anything. —Stephen (Talk) 11:15, 19 February 2016 (UTC)

How did you learn so many languages?[edit]

Out of curiosity, at what age did you begin learning all those languages, and how did you become so proficient in them? Did you learn any by immersion, or did you just study them a lot? I'd love to learn that many, but my progression has been pretty slow lately, so I'm trying to figure out how achievable my ambitious goals are. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 21:06, 19 February 2016 (UTC)

I started at age 13 to study Ancient Greek (by myself), then took Spanish and French in high school. The Army sent me to DLI (Defense Language Institute) in California to learn Russian, then I was stationed in West Germany for three years to eavesdrop on Russian military radio transmissions coming out of East Germany. While in Germany, I took the opportunity to learn German, and after I left military service, I remained in Europe where I worked in Germany, France, Spain, Turkey, Italy, and Greece.
Later when I came back to the U.S., I opened a translation company in Dallas and hired about 200 professional translators as independent contractors. I continued to translate Russian, German, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Dutch, and Italian for commercial companies such as Dr Pepper, Texas Instruments, Hunt Oil, Petrobras, Poulan Chainsaw, Daisy BB, Bell Helicopter, and so on, and my other translators could handle all of the commercially important languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Hungarian, Czech, Serbo-Croatian, Bulgarian, Finnish, Turkish, Arabic, Hebrew, Greek, Polish, and some others.
Many of our clients ran into severe difficulties trying to handle the translations that we presented to them, since in the 20th century (1970s through 2000) almost no one had the equipment or expertise to type, word-process, or typeset any language other than English, so we invested in some extremely expensive phototypesetting machines that gave us the capability of setting any of the commercially important languages and offer our clients completed translations that were ready for printing and publishing. In those days, almost no males could type on a typewriter, and among Europeans, no males and few females could type their native languages. In Asia, nobody at all could type or typeset any of the Asian languages. Almost all Asian newspapers were largely or completely handwritten. For my company, that meant that none of my 200 translators knew how to type, and most of their translations were turned in in manuscript form. Therefore, I started learning how to type and typeset all of those languages myself.
In the 1990s, I started doing a lot of pro bono work for the Unicode Consortium in an effort to create fonts and typing software for the languages of India and Indo-China. Up until then, the few machines that were capable of typing in Indian languages, Vietnamese, Korean, Cambodian, were very primitive and slow, and a good operator might be able to reach speeds as great as 6 words a minute. There was no software in existence then that could help a typist select the various letter forms for Arabic, Devanagari, Cambodian (initial letters, medials, finals, independent, and so on), and the final result was poor quality. So we looked for ways to type those languages that used software to select the correct ligatures and letter forms without operator input. We also spent a lot of time and effort creating decent Unicode fonts to use for those languages. I became an expert with Fontographer.
There are a lot of difficulties with translating technical materials, especially in the more exotic languages, because there were few dictionaries for technological use, and translators often know the technical lingo only in one language (either English or a foreign language, but usually not both), so we had to do a lot of proofreading and redacting, and when we started typing and typesetting the translations, I took the extra step to proofread as I went. By typing and proofreading all of those languages for 30 years, usually 12 hours a day, I gradually picked up more and more vocabulary and grammar. I retired in 2001 and sold my company, and then I began to concentrate on some more exotic languages (but of little commercial value) such as Khmer and Navajo. So that’s pretty much how I did it. —Stephen (Talk) 22:31, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
Wow, I didn't expect such a lengthy reply, but thank you for taking the time to write it! It sounds like you've had a pretty interesting career. If you don't mind me pestering you with another question: Would you say that a native-like understanding of a language is absolutely necessary in order to begin a career as a translator (if one is only translating from that language into one's first language)? I'm curious to know how likely it is that I could pursue a career in (mostly French to English) translation in a few years time, as I'm not yet sure that I'll have "perfect" French by then. I do expect to be able to readily understand anything I read in it in a couple years, just not produce complex, error-free text in the language. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 23:32, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
It’s not necessary to be completely bilingual, but it would help. There are a lot of variables. For some languages such as Spanish and French, a translator really needs to know the source language and the target language well. For exotic languages such as Burmese or Tibetan, it is usually impossible to find translators who know English well. For these difficult languages, usually we have to use a native speaker of the foreign language to translate in both directions. For the more common European languages, the prevailing view is that a translator should only translate into his first language. However, in my years of experience with this, I have found that the best job is usually done by a translator who regularly translates in both directions. Almost as good is the translator who translates from his native language into his second language. And the worst job is usually done by translators who only translate into their first language.
The reason for this is that (1) language is often complex, figurative, idiomatic, ambiguous, hazy, and not always well written or correctly written, and most translators frequently misunderstand some parts of a text written in their second language, even if they are very good in their second language. However, translators can usually understand a text written in their first language with ease, even if badly and carelessly written. And (2) understanding a text is usually easy for a native speaker, even if the text contains misspellings, bad grammar, and various other mistakes. So, while a translator who translates into his second language will probably make some errors that a native speaker would not make, he can nevertheless express his thoughts well enough that the native speaker can read his translation easily and accurately. Language is very forgiving that way.
So a translator who translates from his second language into his first language will write his translation in perfect, idiomatic, grammatical language, but, since he is likely to misunderstand some complex or poorly written parts of the text written in his second language, he will write his incorrect understanding perfectly in his first language. On the other hand, the translator who translates from his first language into his second language will understand his first-language text perfectly, no matter how complex or poorly written it might be, and he can express his correct thoughts into his second language, but imperfectly and with a few grammatical errors. But this will usually not matter, because a native speaker will be able to read his translation easily and correctly, even with its grammatical and stylistic errors.
One very important thing to keep in mind: while there is a lot of material being translated every day between the major languages such as English, French, and Spanish, there are also large numbers of qualified translators in those languages. It is difficult to break into translating jobs for these major languages. Someone who needs a text translated already has several experienced translators that he uses for French or Spanish translations, and he will not take a chance on someone new unless all of his regular translators are off sick or away on vacation. In a rare case like that, you might finally get a chance to show your stuff, and if you do an excellent job in good time and are easy to work with, he might start giving you some work. Also, keep in mind that the translation rates for these major languages are the lowest. There is a lot of competition among many thousands of French translators, and it keeps the pay scale down. If you translate an exotic language such as Cambodian or Burmese, there are relatively few translations needed, but there are also very few translators available to do those jobs, and the pay is the best.
Chinese, Japanese, and Korean are optimal, because there is a lot of translation work needed, but it is hard to find qualified translators. Also, many translators for these languages do not know how to type them well, so if you know one of these three languages, you can readily break into the industry and draw top dollar.
You have to specialize in one or two technical fields, such as finance, petroleum, chemistry, civil engineering, etc. You need to learn the field(s) well (for example, finance, which is difficult translation, but one of the best fields to specialize in if you can hack it), and you need to learn the field in both of your languages.
And there is the matter of your location. In the U.S., you don't have to have any special license or certificate to be a translator. Anybody can translate if he can convince somebody to pay him to do it. Of course, it is a big plus to have a college education and certification from the ATA (American Translators Association). If you are in Europe, translators are considered professionals, just like doctors and lawyers. See this for some insight on becoming a European translator.
And finally, there is some necessary technology that you have to purchase and learn to use, called translation memory. When I was a translator, translation memory did not exist. Today, you have to use it. Your clients will want not only the translation, but the translation memory. Translation memory also complicates the translation charge. There are different rates for new text that you really have to translate, and repetitious text that you can use translation memory for. I can’t help much here, since I have never used translation memory. Two common brands of translation memory are Wordfast and Trados. You will probably need to be proficient with all of the brands of translation memory, since your clients will specify the one that they want.
Hope this helps. —Stephen (Talk) 01:32, 20 February 2016 (UTC)
It very much does, thank you. Some of it contradicts to some degree what I've read elsewhere, but I agree that I'd probably be better off learning a more exotic language. I'd been considering picking up Japanese, Mandarin, Arabic, or a couple of those, and I just might think more seriously about doing that sooner, rather than prioritizing all the European languages I want to learn. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 05:37, 20 February 2016 (UTC)
Sorry for barging in on your discussion so unceremoniously, but I would very much like to make known that in my hay days I did do a wee bit of translation and what I had unswathed in the process hereof was a still-born, malformed baby in the middle of a wolf-haunted, tenebrous wald screaming at the top of its lungsː whereof one doth not understand thereof one should not translate, and then I woke up in a cold sweat. These are the words to live by if you are a translator (straight out of the mouth of babes). And also just to reiterate the point made by Stephen earlier, it is, I have found, ofttimes the case that one should come in direct contact with some dialectal, poorly written or extremely complex form of the language which is to be translated from and in such cases it is of paramount importance that one understand the target language very well for otherwise a faithful translation is out of the question, but on the other hand, and it is all too true, when you have a non-native speaker translate some extremely complex text, full of run-on sentences and such, from his native language into his second language you must needs be sure that a large part of the complexity of the original text will be lost in translation. In conclusion, it's a lose-lose situation any-road, lest one be ambilingual. So my point in plat and plain English is that it is very important to at least have a near native understanding of the language from which you intend to translate. You don't have to be able to speak it perfectly, but you do need to be able to understand it almost as well as a native speak would. Mountebank1 (talk) 20:57, 24 February 2016 (UTC)
Another looky-loo, here: 1) I've been on a documentary kick lately and I'm imagining your story in that format (to great effect). How cool would that be in a documentary about Wiktionary admins? Plus why you contribute, etc. Anyway, 2) So I just applied for a Masters program in translation studies in Barcelona. I live in Madrid this year and I'm trying to take advantage of that to do everything I can in Spanish. But last night as I was reading a book I had this conversation in mind and really focused on everything I didn't understand and why. It was mostly vocabulary, but also some weird grammatical structures and even typos I'm now taking note of. So I just wanted you to know about how you've already helped and to ask if you have any more general advice for someone else whose mind is set on becoming a translator? Ultimateria (talk) 17:49, 25 February 2016 (UTC)
A lot of my advice in this matter is likely to be out of date, because there have been big changes in the past 20 years since the advent of the internet. But another thing that might be useful to some: a friend of mine from Czechoslovakia wanted to translate Japanese, and when he looked into the matter, he realized that he needed to forget about the Czech language and become fluent in a different language: English. There simply is no work from Japanese into Czech. He began studying Japanese in a Czech university, and when he graduated, he moved to the UK and then to the U.S. to learn English. When his English was good enough, he moved to Japan to learn advanced Japanese, especially written Japanese. At some point, I forget when, he also studied patent documents, concentrating on the language style and format used in Japanese and English patents. He also married a Japanese wife. When he felt ready, he went into business translating Japanese patents into English, and he is one of very few translators who can do it. He makes a lot of money this way, and does nothing but Japanese patents into English.
Another friend, born in Navarra (Spain), moved to Japan after World War II. He studied English in Japan and became fluent, and eventually he started translating technical English material into Spanish for Japanese companies. He specialized in electric sewing machines, such as Brother, Singer, and Janome. Sewing-machine technical language is strange and unfamiliar, so most English-speakers could not understand it. My friend made a great fortune in his lifetime translating nothing but repetitive sewing-machine English into Spanish for Japanese manufacturers. (Note that Japanese companies pay very little to native Japanese translators who translate between Japanese and another language, but they pay handsomely to foreign translators in Japan who translate between English and another language.) —Stephen (Talk) 23:26, 25 February 2016 (UTC)
That's good to know. If I learn Japanese, which I think I might, as I have relatives who speak it, English to French might be an option for me, provided I'm not translating complicated texts. Do you know if it would be beneficial (as a translator) to learn Punjabi? There seem to be quite a few Punjabs here in Canada, and I have relatives who speak that language as well.
I don't suppose you'd know if there is much demand for translators for material related to zoology, especially ethology? That is a subject that has interested me ever since I can remember, and I would love to translate something that I find interesting. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 04:50, 26 February 2016 (UTC)
I’m not sure about Punjabi. In all my years in the translation business, we only had one small Punjabi job. Rarely anything to do with India or Pakistan (probably because English is such a lingua franca in those countries). However, it is possible that Punjabi could be important in another country, such as the UK or Canada.
As for zoology, we did not have any work in that specifically. I think the closest that we came to that was some ranching texts (livestock, cattle, horses, veterinarian terminology), but not too much of that. We did not get translations that were as simple as the pure sciences or literary (books). Here is a list of some translation fields, but most of our work was in petroleum, civil engineering, construction, law and contracts, software, food, advertising, financial, business, agricultural, aerospace, and so on. —Stephen (Talk) 23:25, 27 February 2016 (UTC)
There seem to be a fair number of Punjabi speakers here in Canada, but I think I'll have to research that more. I notice that biology is on the list you linked to, but I imagine there's more work in business-related subjects. I'll have to put some thought into this. I've got some time to make up my mind, as I'm young yet, but this conversation has certainly helped narrow my focus a bit, or at least afforded me some clarity. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 03:04, 29 February 2016 (UTC)
An immigrant community is going to have a large number of bilinguals, and some of those will be educated in the subject fields that would provide the translating business. Such people would have an inherent advantage over non-native speakers, and immigrants tend to be used to working harder to make it in a new country, anyway. I think that, rather than choosing right away, you'd be better off developing your skills for learning languages in general (especially in languages that are quite different from English or French), building up your knowledge in subject fields, and exposing yourself as much as possible to the rest of the world to see what's really out there and where the opportunities are. Chances are that what seems like a sure thing now will be replaced in the long run by something you would never imagine for yourself based on what you know today. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:02, 29 February 2016 (UTC)
It is mostly a matter of logic. Wherever you live, just think about the businesses and organizations nearby. Is there an aircraft manufacturer who might be doing business (sell aircraft, buying parts, etc.) with other countries? Are there food or beverage companies who import or export to other countries and who might need contracts, ingredients lists and so on in other languages? Is there a computer company such as Apple or IBM who might need translations of contracts, lawsuits, or help-me texts, or localizations in other languages? Thinking of biology, is there a business or organization that you think might be wanting to translation biology texts into or from another language (I ask this one because I think it would be quite rare in the U.S. However, I suppose that in some small countries, the government or a university might want to translate biological treatises from English.) Are there advertising agencies that do business in foreign countries? Is there an organization such as the EU that requires lots of translations for various member countries? Are there book publishers that like to translate successful books into other languages? (Big publishers usually do not do this, but sometimes a writer might want to have his or her book translated. These writers normally do not go through a translation agency, but search privately for really talented translators.) Does your city, state, or province have large immigrant populations and might need to translate official materials (income tax forms, etc.) into their languages? Considering just one certain language, such as Punjabi, can you think of any businesses or organizations nearby that would need to have Punjabi translations of some sort? (The answer to this question in Dallas would be no, there does not seem to be anyone in Dallas who would want to buy Punjabi translations.)
Thinking of translation agencies, you can find a number of them in your Yellow Pages. Most of them normally handle a couple of languages, a single language (usually spoken by the agency owner), 8 to 12 languages (for many larger agencies), up to around 30 languages. All or almost all of the languages they handle are the common languages that you would think of in Europe and Asia (French, German, Chinese, Korean, but not Cambodian, not Burmese, not Lithuanian, not Georgian, no African languages except for Arabic, no Indian languages). There are a small number of companies that specialize in rare and exotic languages (such as Cambodian, Burmese, Turkmen, Kazakh, Hawaiian), and these companies charge an arm and a leg for small translations, and quality/accuracy is not guaranteed. So it is really a matter of putting your mind to it: logic. —Stephen (Talk) 23:43, 29 February 2016 (UTC)

If I may barge in, I have a related question. Would you say that there’s a significant demand for Romanian translators or interpreters in Hispanophone countries? It seems rare to find Hispanophones who desire to learn Romanian or know it as a secondary language. It’s possible that the majority learn it for fun rather than as a necessity. --Romanophile (contributions) 09:23, 28 February 2016 (UTC)

Romania and Spain are both members of the European Union, so there should be significant translation needed between them. If it were not for the EU, there would probably be very little translation. Of course, there would be much more translation needed among the wealthier Western European countries. See here for some info on EU translators. —Stephen (Talk) 09:58, 28 February 2016 (UTC)


Did you delete my request by accident? --Romanophile (contributions) 08:53, 25 February 2016 (UTC)

By accident somehow. I have no idea how it happened. I was just restoring the top entry and moving a misplaced request to the bottom. Anyway, restored. —Stephen (Talk) 10:46, 25 February 2016 (UTC)

carta verde[edit]

On Google Books, I’m finding Spanish results for carta verde, and it seems to mean the exact same thing as green card, but I don’t know if it’s good Spanish or not. Maybe it’s at least slang? --Romanophile (contributions) 05:48, 22 March 2016 (UTC)

A green card is most commonly called tarjeta verde. Also, but less commonly, ​carta verde, and permiso de residencia. They are good Spanish. —Stephen (Talk) 08:49, 22 March 2016 (UTC)
Ah, okay. Thank you. I thought that carta could only be used for playing cards, not cards in general. --Romanophile (contributions) 09:00, 22 March 2016 (UTC)
carta can mean letter (correspondence), card (in general), menu, charter, map, epistle, and playing card. —Stephen (Talk) 09:07, 22 March 2016 (UTC)


Hello! May I ask you a question. Do you know if there are language codes for Pre-Angkorian Khmer and Angkorian Khmer? Thank you! --หมวดซาโต้ (talk) 14:44, 25 March 2016 (UTC)

No, there is only km for Central Khmer, and kxm for Northern Khmer. You will find language codes for the many related languages at Eastern Mon-Khmer, Mon-Khmer, and Austro-Asiatic. Pre-Angkorian Khmer and Angkorian Khmer both belong to Old Khmer, and were spoken from 600 CE through 800, and from 800 through 1200 CE. If you want to enter words in Pre-Angkorian and Angkorian Khmer, we can make special language codes that you can use here on English Wiktionary. If you want special language codes, ask Angr. He knows how to do it. —Stephen (Talk) 03:20, 26 March 2016 (UTC)

your focus[edit]

Why do you rarely touch the entries for European languages? Most of your work in recent years seems to be either Native American or Asian ones. --Romanophile (contributions) 14:36, 31 March 2016 (UTC)

I used to do almost all of the Russian and Arabic entries, but there began to be so much controversy over the transliteration systems, and then some editors started deleting some Russian entries as SOP, so I stopped working on Russian. Years ago when we first started discussing SOP, it referred to something different. We were trying to define SOP as well as valid terms. In a sentence such as "A value-added tax, or goods and services tax, is a popular way of implementing a consumption tax in Europe", SOP referred to such combinations as "a value", "tax or", "or goods", "goods and", "is a", and so on. Valid term referred to "value-added tax", "goods and services tax", and "consumption tax". Originally, being SOP was not in itself a reason to delete an entry, but if an entry were SOP and nothing else, then it had no value. But if an entry were SOP and also a valid term, such as "consumption tax", then it was a useful entry. That definition fell by the wayside fairly quickly, and SOP applied to almost any term that included a word space. So when Russian entries began to be deleted as SOP, I stopped working on Russian.
The same thing started to happen to other languages I worked in, so I stopped doing those languages. I stopped making Navajo entries because of the same problem. There was also a feeling among some editors that Native American languages cannot have modern terms such as atomic energy, but should only be able to talk about bows and arrows, tepees, the Great Spirit, and wampum. But Native American languages are like any other language, in that if they continue to be used, they develop vocabulary for modern terms. So Navajo entries are deleted not only because some English translations are SOP (the English translations being SOP does not mean that the Navajo original is SOP), but also because some editors believe that Navajo cannot have modern terminology. I don’t mind adding translations to the translation tables, but I don’t like to waste my time creating entries only to have them deleted months or years later.
Now I am seeing that Khmer entries are starting to be deleted because some of their English translations are SOP, so I don’t want to waste time creating Khmer entries. The Ojibwe entries that I created some ten years ago were criticized bitterly for not adhering to recent formatting standards (because those standards did not exist ten years ago), so I stopped making Ojibwe entries.
I think I can still do some work in Yup’ik without worrying too much about entries being deleted. Most other Native American languages have little literature, so the problems complying with CFI are too great.
And that is why I do very few languages now, and don’t create many entries. —Stephen (Talk) 15:53, 31 March 2016 (UTC)
Hi Stephen. Please don't feel too personal about some entries being deleted! My entries get deleted too but I am still here. It's the "benefit" of working on any Wiki-project. I felt very sorry that you stopped working on Russian and Arabic entries and I really hope you don't stop working with Khmer and other Asian languages. If you get too sensitive there won't be any language to work with... Please persevere. :) --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 23:41, 31 March 2016 (UTC)
I don’t take it personally. I just feel that it’s too big a waste of time to put time and energy into entries that will soon be deleted, or in some cases (such as Ojibwe) will become objects of criticism and insult. It’s too bad, however, that there are not many languages left that I feel I can contribute in. But I can still add translations to the translation sections. They only take a moment, so I don’t care if some get deleted. —Stephen (Talk) 23:08, 1 April 2016 (UTC)
There are still basic, atomic words that should please everybody and would always pass CFI by anybody's standard. Languages, such as e.g. Khmer still lack basic everyday words. Category:Khmer_lemmas has mere 1,604 lemmas today. Even the smallest published dictionary will have more words. Working on basic words seems to be boring for many editors but that's the first thing they should do before adding advanced vocabulary, idioms, phrases, colloquialisms, etc, things that are "interesting". That's my opinion, anyway. That's why I have been focusing on the Russian and Chinese frequency lists first, occasionally adding some other words I come across. --Anatoli T. (обсудить/вклад) 00:49, 2 April 2016 (UTC)

Translation request[edit]

Hello I made a translation request from English to Sanskrit on wiki. I've never used it before so I'm not sure how it works but other people's requests after mine have been answered. Am I just impatient or did it get overlooked? Thanks for your insight. Laurajoellelynn (talk) 00:24, 3 April 2016 (UTC)

Your sentence is a lot harder than most and I haven’t had time to do it. Most requests only take a minute or two, but yours will probably need an hour at least. Also, you requested accuracy and I can’t guarantee that. Sanskrit is a dead language, so there are no native speakers, only learners; and it has difficult grammar and many irregularities. —Stephen (Talk) 06:30, 3 April 2016 (UTC)


@Stephen G. Brown:

How could I leave a message on your talk page if you block my IP? Just let me explain my point, then I'll be happy to read your reply. The reason for the removing of the * (asterisk) symbol from Italian IPAs is simple: that symbol is absolutely not used, neither in IPA nor in any other standard phometic transcription, for the so called "syntactic gemination" occurring in Italian. In was an invention of IvanScrooge98, who deliberately introduced both in this Wiki dictionary (I've noticed it just yesterday) and in the Wiki encyclopedia. There he was contested, the issue was discussed (you're free to read it, nay, please read it, it's quite short: [5]) and it was unanimously decided to remove this arbitrary convention. IvanScrooge98 didn't even take part in the discussion even if he was invited to. And the decison was taken by some of the most expert users about phonetics and IPA on en.wikipedia (Macrakis Peter238 Ƶ§œš¹). Then, why should this wrong symbol, contradicting the very IPA standards in which words are transcribed, be kept here? It just confuses readers, as it happened for the discussion I've just talked about. Will you ponder this question, please? If you still think I'm wrong tell me, but I really see no reason to leave here a symbol which was subjectively inserted by a single user and already removed elsewhere. Let me now, thank you in advance! —This comment was unsigned.

Whatever the merit of what you want to do, you don't go implementing it in dozens of entries without getting consensus (the Beer parlour would be a good place to start). As Angr pointed out to you, the consensus on Wikipedia is irrelevant to Wiktionary, and doing what you tried to do would be, in effect, unilaterally changing the rules for Wiktionary without asking. You seem to be awful anxious to ramrod this through in a hurry- is this some kind of personal issue? Chuck Entz (talk) 13:47, 6 April 2016 (UTC)
Actually I was talking to Stephen G. Brown, but since you were the first one who reinserted the asterisks I'll be glad to reply to you too. But let me tell you I don't like the tone you used towards me. Now: "you don't go implementing it in dozens of entries without getting consensus" isn't it exactly what IvanScrooge98 did? Why when he inserted that absurd symbol has nobody ever undone his edits, while now everyone is reverting each attempt to remove them? Double standard? More: who has changed Wikitionary's rules? I'm just re-applying them after a single user has changed on his own free will, according to nothing but his own opinions, his deliberate choice. Absurdly, you should thank me for restoring these uncyclopedic edits instead of defending them. Again: double standard. Why am I doing this? Because I'm Italian and I don't like that my language's words are handled like that, making them more difficult to understand to readers, just because of a user who thought he could change phonetic principles at will. You, both, are not helping this dictionary, nor the Wiki project, by doing what you've done so far about this issue. Apart from the burocratic problems, what do you personally think about the use of the asterisk in this particular case? Let me know. unsigned comment by‎ User:2001:1600:3:7:224:e8ff:fe7f:8c25 14:33, 6 April 2016 (UTC)
What Chuck Entz said is correct. As for IvanScrooge98, making such changes and additions to entries is our purpose here. You were not blocked for trying to improve entries, you were blocked because some of your edits had been reverted by one of our admins, and then you started making the same edits again...edit warring. We don’t tolerate that. As for the asterisks, we probably should not use this notation, but we have to discuss it first. You can bring it up at the Wiktionary:Beer parlor for discussion. The asterisk notation has been in use for several months already. After all this time, removing it requires discussion. But remember, if an admin reverts you, you have to stop doing what you’re doing immediately. If you continue after having been reverted, you will be blocked. —Stephen (Talk) 02:16, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
Oh, right... The famous "free" encyclopedia, isn't it? Pardon, I meant "occupied"! unsigned rant by Special:Contributions/2001:1600:3:7:224:e8ff:fe7f:8c25 08:40, 7 April 2016 (UTC)
The matter is not so important, but the process is. I personally have no interest in the matter and do not intend to join the conversation. Others will consider the matter and eventually decide on whether to change the asterisks to some other form, or remove it altogether. After the matter is decided, it will be done according to the consensus. I can’t say how long it will take. Sometimes it’s only a day or two, other times it takes weeks, even months. —Stephen (Talk) 00:36, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

your Q[edit]

that should be the answer Seb az86556 (talk) 07:25, 13 April 2016 (UTC)

Thanks, looks perfect. —Stephen (Talk) 08:22, 13 April 2016 (UTC)


Discussion moved to Wiktionary:Beer parlour/2016/April#Palochka.

folk linguistics[edit]

Have you met a lot of people who seriously consider English to be a Romance language? --Romanophile (contributions) 22:41, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

No, not many. Maybe just one. Usually if someone knows the term "Romance language," they have enough intelligence and education to know that English is not one. —Stephen (Talk) 08:09, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
I've met many such people. --WikiTiki89 14:39, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
I've met a guy (a Portuguese speaker from Brazil, like myself) who was under the impression that English and French are related, because, not speaking English or French, he discovered a few words from these languages and felt odd that the same letters may have different sounds in different words. He felt that the possibility of the same letters having different sounds in different words was something unlikely to happen in a language. Since English and French have that characteristic in common, he felt that they must be therefore related. --Daniel Carrero (talk) 15:33, 25 April 2016 (UTC)

easy to work with[edit]

You said, in a post above: "When you finally get a call for a job, if they see that you are very available and easy to work with, and if they think you’ve done a good job, then they will start using you."

Also: "if you do an excellent job in good time and are easy to work with, he might start giving you some work."

If it's OK to ask, I wonder: how can a translator be a difficult person to work with? --Daniel Carrero (talk) 13:24, 24 April 2016 (UTC)

Translators can be very difficult sometimes. Here are some of the problems I have encountered. Translators in the U.S. are usually hired as subcontractors, which means that they essentially work for themselves (just like a plumber, a carpet layer, or an auto mechanic), and they contract with me to do specific jobs. Since they work for themselves, they are responsible for their own income tax, social security, sales tax, etc., and if they want medical insurance or other kinds of insurance, they must obtain it for themselves. I had a Japanese translator who was very insistent that I provide insurance for him. I tried to explain to him that subcontractors have to handle their own insurance needs, but he would not listen. I dismissed him.
Another translator who did a job for me decided that he wanted to be paid for the work the day after the job was finished. Usually a company pays us for our services 30 days after the work is delivered, and we pay our translators every two weeks (every other Friday). When I explained that he would be paid in two weeks, he became abusive and threatening, so I paid him immediately and fired him.
Another translator gave us a list of his phone numbers (about four phone lines, I think). When we had work for him, the dispatcher called one of his numbers and left a message for him to call us. It turned out that that phone number was for the cell phone in his car, and he rarely checked it for messages, so he was too late in returning our call. He blamed us for the mix up, saying that we should have called all of his phone numbers and left messages on each of his phones. That's not reasonable, we only call one number and leave one message. If he didn't want us to call his car phone, he should not have given us that number. We had to dismiss him over the incident.
One of the worst was a French translator who did a very big job for us. We gave him several large notebooks full of text to translate into English. The translation had to do with some cargo aircraft that had crashed and needed major service and repairs. After the translator finished the translation, she called me and said she felt that the translation was very, very important, and therefore she wanted to renegotiate her fees. She demanded that we pay her double her original quote for the job. When we contract with a client to translate their material, we keep 50% of the translation fee for the company, and pay 50% of the money to the translator. So when she demanded double payment, it meant that she would take the entire check. She refused to turn over the manuals unless we met her demands, so we were forced to pay her want she wanted. After we paid her the doubled fee, we filed a lawsuit against her in small claims court and we were awarded our rightful portion of the money. We fired her and blacklisted her in our State.
One time I had an important meeting with the board of a company concerning Arabic translation. One of the products that the company needed translations for was pork products, which they wanted to sell on the Arab market in several Arab countries. I wanted to talk them out of offering pork products to Arab importers, but I needed certain terms translated into Arabic so that I could make an intelligent argument. However, my Arabic translator refused to translate any of the material for the pork products. I told her that I was going to talk the company out of exporting any pork, but I needed the material translated so that I could made a cogent argument. Still she refused, and so I fired her and hired another Arab translator who would do as I asked.
Another French translator started to work on a job we gave her, and then she realized that it was too technical for her, so she called the client and suggested that they find a different translation service. That was a serious mistake, since we had plenty of other French translators who could have handled the job. We had to let her go because of her bad judgment.
A Korean translator did a large job for us into Korean. It was a Korean written exam to obtain a drivers license, and we needed to translate it and enter the translation into a special database that would run on the client's specialized computers. The Korean translator submitted his translation, then I entered it into the database (I had to retype the entire Korean translation to get it into the database). When I was finished, I printed the translation out and asked the Korean translator to proofread it to make sure that I had not made any mistakes. The client's printer did not use good Korean fonts, but this was not a problem because the Koreans who would take the Korean test would only see the test on screen, not a printout. The printout was only for proofreading. But our Korean translator was so upset that the printout was in an ugly font, that he refused to proofread it. He did not understand that the material would be used only on screen, and he wanted me to make the client buy thousands of Apple computers for the Korean language test. Long story short, I had to call in a different Korean translator to proofread the job, and I had to fire the original translator because he was unreasonable.
In another job, a client was madly in love with a Turkish girl and he wanted to translate love letters into Turkish. I gave the love letters to one of our Turkish translators, and after the translator read the love letters, he felt that the client was acting like a complete fool, so he called the client and told him what a fool he was. We lost that job and I fired that translator.
Most of our translators were very responsible and easy to work with, but with more than 200 translators over a period of 30 years, there were occasional problems such as the ones I have described. These were translators who were difficult to work with. —Stephen (Talk) 14:56, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
Thanks, your reply was really interesting. It can be read as a serious list of some things not to do in a job.
From what you said, it seems obvious to me that it was wrong of the Turkish translator being judgemental of the Turkish love letter guy. Being the client a fool or not, he had the right to have his love letters translated or he could simply call another company. I can understand the reasoning to some extent in that, I've been working in multiple jobs selling stuff, (1 fast-food job, 1 telephone-answering job and now I have an online store) and I don't see myself suggesting to a client "give up your plans about buying what I have, try another company or just go home". The Arab pork case was somehow different, in which you had the chance to think "I'll translate whatever you have, no questions asked" but you had good reason to dissuade the client of a bad business decision. --Daniel Carrero (talk) 02:34, 26 April 2016 (UTC)
Yes, companies almost always have commercial or legal reasons that they want a translation, but private individuals may have all sorts of reasons, and it is not the job of a translator to make judgments. That reminds me of another case we had ... a judge in the criminal courts needed a Thai interpreter, and he agreed to our price quote. We sent the interpreter, but then the judge tried to renegotiate the price of the job with her, asking if she would agree to do the job at half price. The Thai interpreter agreed, since the amount seemed reasonable to her, but she didn’t stop to think that our company keeps 50%. So in the end, we paid her 50% of her renegotiated price, which made her unhappy, but then she understood the reason why. The business office negotiates the prices, not the individual translators. In this instance, we stopped accepting work from that judge. —Stephen (Talk) 09:32, 26 April 2016 (UTC)

Old Khmer[edit]

Hello and sorry to bother you! I would like to hear your opinion regarding Old Khmer.

Now, there are an increasing number of entries in which Old Khmer terms need the native script. But all the available Old Khmer dictionaries seem to write terms in the Latin script only. So, on English Wiktionary, do you think it is okay to write an Old Khmer term directly in Latin rather than using it as a transliteration and requesting the native script for it? For example:

kralā homa (in the etymology of กลาโหม)
instead of
{{m|km||tr=kralā homa}}

And because of such increase, do you think it is the time to have specific language codes for Old Khmer, Pre-Angkorian Khmer, Angkorian Khmer, Middle Khmer, and Modern Khmer? So that we don't have to use a format like this:

Old {{etyl|km|-}}, to produce: Old Khmer
Angkorian {{etyl|km|-}}, to produce: Angkorian Khmer

Thank you very much! --หมวดซาโต้ (talk) 05:39, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

@Wyang, Octahedron80, Suzukaze-c, Iudexvivorum This topic may interest you. --หมวดซาโต้ (talk) 05:49, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

I support codes for older varieties of Khmer and using Latin to write Old/Pre-Angkorian Khmer (for now). Wyang (talk) 06:05, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
I believe you have pinged the wrong person; I don't deal with Thai entries. —suzukaze (tc) 06:06, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
I pinged you since you made a relevant edit at กลาโหม :) --หมวดซาโต้ (talk) 06:10, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
Yes, I think Latin script is best, at least for now. For one thing, Old Khmer was written in an old script that is no long used. I don’t think there are fonts available for Old Khmer. Also, I don’t know of any resources that could be used for spelling Old Khmer.
As to language codes for Old Khmer, Pre-Angkorian Khmer, Angkorian Khmer, Middle Khmer, yes, we need them. —Stephen (Talk) 06:08, 28 April 2016 (UTC)
Thanks! Then I will request User talk:Angr to make special codes for them. --หมวดซาโต้ (talk) 06:14, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

Decree Nisi Changes - Language[edit]

Hello, I replied back on my talk page. Still getting the hang of how to use website features.

Hi. Please sign your comments with four tildes: ~~~~. —Stephen (Talk) 20:50, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

Haha "I may as well have written it in chinese". I guess our fluency flow is a bit different. First, a claim's validity is a claim's truthfullness & also juristic truthfullness & a claim's legitimacy is its legal officiality. Second, I used "to" as in 'in regard to'. Third, I used "unless" to mean 'instead but if', as in instead but if the party's cause demonstrates why not. Fourth, I used "cause" in regard to a parties case//defense//rebuttal against such claims validity. I did do my best to include legalisms. Also I maybe should have included the entry in nisi due to a "decree" being a courts doing & not an individuals in that sense, although a verdict is that which is veridical & thus an individual can have jurisdiction & validation//verification to their claims validity until rebutted//refuted, by nisi, the principle of nisi, & maybe as you know a verdict is basically a decree, except with the advantage that it involves something being veridical, determined by the logicality of its semantic derivative.x8BC8x (talk) 23:17, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

A rule regarding a claim’s validity and legitimacy; on the other hand, if a party’s cause demonstrates why not, if not as a nullity of illegitimacy for nullification.
It’s better, but it still does not make sense. It demonstrates why not what? And then "if not as a nullity of illegitimacy for nullification" is incomprehensible. And it still is not clear what the rule is. The rule is "regarding" a claim’s validity, but what is the rule? Is it a rule regarding a claim’s validity that says anyone who does not validate a claim may be penalized with a $10,000 fine? —Stephen (Talk) 23:51, 29 April 2016 (UTC)
Okay, I looked in some legal dictionaries to see what they say about rule nisi:
(1) A rule upon condition that is to become absolute unless cause is shown to the contrary. (2) An ex parte order, often in the absence of the person against whom the relief is being sought, that will go into effect unless the party that is affected can convince the court that the order should not go into effect. (3) A court ruling that becomes final unless one or both parties show cause for it not to. —Stephen (Talk) 01:09, 30 April 2016 (UTC)

Sorry I took so long to look to check & reply, I thought that wiktionary would send me another message if you replied back, I should've checked sooner. Yes i do agree with those definitions and mine was supposed to be another form of the first defintion you've given but with some more details, which i attempted to entail / give result to. If a party's cause demonstrates why not as in 'why it shouldn't' be otherwise valid, and "if not" as in 'should it not', then 'as' as in 'in the form of' a nullity 'among' illegitimacy (which should be for nullification/negation/removal), and is as a rule due to the legal term being a principle of law , especially ex vi termini (by the vis of the term). Hopefully that brings hence/present some sense to such ambiguous senses = ) . x8BC8x (talk) 21:10, 20 May 2016 (UTC)


Hi. At homeowner you restored the deleted "Someone who owns a house for all practical intents and purposes, but is technically still in the process of paying for it over a long period of time". What does it mean? Does it mean:

  1. Someone who has title to a house and a mortgage on it.
  2. Someone who does not have title to a house, but has possession and is paying by instalments, or renting-to-buy, or some such.
  3. Or something else.

I am quite puzzled as to what it means. I thought someone had started typing the first five words and then got carried away on a verbose and oblique flight of fancy. Thanks. Nurg (talk) 09:48, 1 May 2016 (UTC)

It means the 2nd one, "Someone who does not have title to a house, but has possession and is paying the principle and interest by instalments." You cannot have the title until the mortgage is fully paid. But if you are renting-to-buy, you’re not an owner, you’re a renter. In this case, you don’t become an owner until you eventually stop renting and sign a mortgage contract to become a regular buyer. —Stephen (Talk) 11:51, 1 May 2016 (UTC)
Thanks. Nurg (talk) 22:39, 3 May 2016 (UTC)

សូម (soom) / សុំ (som)[edit]

Hi Stephen.

When I put the "attention" template in one of these I somehow didn't realize that there were two different but similar words and I didn't actually check my phrasebooks for which one they used for "please".

I'll try to check that today. Thanks for fleshing all this Khmer stuff out by the way! It's remained the most fascinating of the languages from my last trip and nobody else here seems to be working on it at all. — hippietrail (talk) 03:40, 16 May 2016 (UTC)

Yes, interesting language. I especially like the script. —Stephen (Talk) 05:26, 16 May 2016 (UTC)


Hello, could you please tell me which Turkic language this spelling of the name of a plucked musical instrument is? къобуз Thank you, 15:20, 17 May 2016 (UTC)

Karachay-Balkar. See also the Kazak w:kobyz. —Stephen (Talk) 20:08, 17 May 2016 (UTC)

Gloria sah (talkcontribs)[edit]

Hi. Can you please make Gloria sah an autopatroller? --Romanophile (contributions) 17:47, 21 May 2016 (UTC)

I would be happy to, but in Wiktionary:Whitelist Ungoliant advises against it for the time being. —Stephen (Talk) 17:57, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
Me too, I'm waiting for so long, that our dear Ungoliant would whitelist me ;-pp , --Glo (talk) 18:51, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
Well, that comment is from many months ago. Gloria’s technical knowledge has improved greatly since then, and I’m all for her being whitelisted now. (But someone should nominated her again instead of using this discussion; whitelisting is a public process!) — Ungoliant (falai) 19:01, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
I don’t think anyone has ever been re-nominated after a delay was placed on the nomination. I doubt that it will ever happen unless someone sees this discussion and goes to Wiktionary:Whitelist to nominate her again. —Stephen (Talk) 19:07, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
Just did it. — Ungoliant (falai) 19:31, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
@Ungoliant MMDCCLXIV: I couldn’t remember what the autopatroller page was called. My medications have demented effects so I have to either act quickly when I have a plan, or write it down. --Romanophile (contributions) 19:14, 21 May 2016 (UTC)
Done. —Stephen (Talk) 19:35, 21 May 2016 (UTC)

Nisi // rule nisi // Even decree nisi[edit]

Hello there Stephen, so very sorry I took so long to look to check & reply, I thought that wiktionary would send me another message if you replied back, I should've checked sooner. Yes i do agree with those definitions and mine was supposed to be another form of the first defintion you've given but with some more details, which i attempted to entail / give result to. If a party's cause demonstrates why not as in 'why it shouldn't' be otherwise valid, and "if not" as in 'should it not', then 'as' as in 'in the form of' a nullity 'among' illegitimacy (which should be for nullification/negation/removal), and is as a rule due to the legal term being a principle of law , especially ex vi termini (by the vis of the term). Although i'm not quite sure where you came up with the $10,000 fine reference . Hopefully such specifications brings hence/present some sense to such ambiguous senses = ) you should check out my new chinese i came up with for nisi or rule nisi for us to decode ; ) baha! I guess I can show you if you reply back. This message has additional info compared to the other similar message which I hence has already been sent. x8BC8x (talk) 14:40, 23 May 2016 (UTC)

$10,000, just a random example. Not from a real-life case. —Stephen (Talk) 03:54, 24 May 2016 (UTC)

another business question[edit]

Hey Stephen. I don't have any plans to work in translation (as much as I respect your massive multilingualism) but since you have run a company for a while, I thought you might tell me something. To what extent do you think that maintaining contacts, and knowing names, and finding friends of friends, etc. is important to your business? Does this vary across cultures? In what ways? Thanks! Equinox 06:51, 24 May 2016 (UTC)

It is important. Most translating companies only have a few full-time translators (usually fewer than five or six), and the rest are called upon as needed (that is, they are subcontractors, free agents who act independently and usually work for several different translating companies). So anyone who takes in work to be translated needs to know a lot of translators, especially since there are so many specialties in translation (medical translations, electrical, hydraulic, petroleum, legal, financial, etc.; as well as those who specialize in written translation or oral interpreting, which is divided into simultaneous and consecutive). Most translations are technical, and technical translations can be very, very difficult, since many technical terms cannot be found in existing dictionaries, even technical dictionaries. A German-speaking translator who is doing a tough legal translation often needs to call on other German translators or German technicians working in that industry in Germany to try to pin down a difficult translation. It’s not unusual that a translator might take two or three hours or more on a single difficult word.
There are also translators who specialize in editing, correcting, and polishing translations done by others. Often there are special typographical needs, such as hyphenation, preferences in metrical units, and so on. In Japanese and Chinese, there are tricky situations that can occur from line to line (that is, not only must the editors have the proper sequence of characters in the line of text, editors must also be aware of nearby characters in the previous and following lines, because they can sometimes make unwanted words that would be obvious to readers of those languages). There is a lot going on in translating from one language to another that takes place after the translation proper has been done, and all of it requires the services of specially trained translators.
Besides the thousands of different languages, there are also all of the dialects, and there can be huge differences between a language that is spoken in its homeland (such as Polish in Poland) and one that is spoken by a group that has emigrated (such as Polish people in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania). There are so many different kinds of translation, and any one translator is limited to only a few of the possibilities. For that reason, anyone accepting translation work either has to say "no" a lot or must have a database of many names, abilities, and specialties.
It can vary by country. In the U.S., translation is not as rigidly controlled as it is in Europe. In America, there are no licensing or education requirements, but in Europe there are strict requirements in regard to education and licensing. In America, almost all translators and interpreters were born and raised in other countries, regardless of whether they translate mostly into English or mostly from English; but in Europe, it is usually a requirement that translators only translate into their mother tongue. —Stephen (Talk) 07:30, 24 May 2016 (UTC)
Really interesting stuff. Thank you. I read something recently about the English/French/German versions of EU texts being the de facto versions despite the legal obligation to translate into all EU languages, because the translation delay means that member states just prefer to read the pre-existing versions rather than wait.
When I worked in software, we did the obvious localisations for the US market (e.g. kilometres to miles) but we also ended up doing terminological changes that weren't strictly necessary, like "zip code" for "postcode", and "center" for "centre". The feeling was that there was no barrier to comprehension, but it would otherwise have that faint alien/foreign feeling. (And I always wondered why nobody complained about the weird diagonally-split "English" flag in language selection menus, half US and half UK, since it's nobody's flag and doesn't cover a tenth of the parts of the world that speak English... mumble...) Equinox 07:55, 24 May 2016 (UTC)