Archive for the ‘yerelleştirme’ Category

Do You Want to Rearrange Your Words?

Until recently, I hadn’t know what anagram is. I stumbled upon a website which rearranges the letters of any word that you write. This is amazing because this website shows more options than one can think just looking at the letters. I like it a lot and I want to share it with you. Maybe you also enjoy seeing how many options one may have!

What is an Anagram?

noun: A word or phrase formed by rearranging the letters of another word or phrase.

verb: To rearrange letters in such a way. To anagrammatize.

How does it work?

You just type the word you want:

Then you click on “Get anagrams” to see how many words you can have by rearranging the positions of the letters:

The only thing I do not like is that you can sometimes have words without any meaning (at least in English). I guess the computer gives all the possible rearrangements regardless of their meanings.

Anyway, it is a good and an interesting service especially for us, the language lovers. You can give it a try- after all it is free 🙂

Click here to try.

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Do You Know the Difference Phonetic and Phonemic Alphabets?


Well, this term I got many courses on Linguistic and I guess I finally learn the difference between phonemic and phonetic alphabet. You can always find the scientific explanation on internet but for those who do not want a detailed and complex explanation, I will try to tell the difference  briefly.

IPA, International Phonetic Alphabet, is the set of phones that mostly define the way we pronounce words. They are different from the regular alphabet because most of the times, our alphabets contain less sounds than we actually utter. Phonetic alphabet has more sounds. I’m sure you are confused many times about the weird signs that appear following the word that you are looking up. These are the phonetic signs. For example: /ˈdɪk.ʃən.ər.i/= dictionary. As you can see, there are different signs that we are not familiar with.

On the other hand, Phonemic Alphabet includes more and more sounds compared to Phonetic Alphabet because phonemes are little sounds that mostly appears in different dialects. That’s to say, phonemes are the different pronunciations of the same phones.

There is one major difference between these 2 alphabets. Mistakes related to Phonetic Alphabet create meaning difference but mistakes related to Phonemic Alphabet do not create any meaning difference. I will explain this with an example.

kin= /kɪn/ vs king= /kɪŋ/

Here, there is only one phone is different but if we use them interchangably, it means totally different things.

lull = [lʌɫ]

In this word, there is a different pronunciation of “L”. Try to pronounce this word aloud. You will see that you say the first and and the last “L” in a different way. This is phonemic because even if you say these two “L”s in the same way, it does not create any meaning difference.

As a last remark, the phonetic transcriptions are shown between /…/ but phonemic transcriptions are shown between […].

I hope my little knowledge on linguistics is helpful for you.

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New Meanings for Old Words

I do not know how exactly I have discovered this web site 🙂 However, there are many funny definitions for everyday words. Here I have pasted the ones that I like most. For more funny language content, you can click the link at the bottom. Enjoy the post and have a happy new year!

Politician (polly•tish•un) n.Someone who shakes your hand befor an election and your confidence after it. (Thank you, Sam Fisher)

Classic novel np. A book which people praise, but seldom read.

Conference room np. A place where everyone talks, no one listens, and later everyone disagrees about what was said.

Doctor n. A person who kills your ills with pills then kills you with bills.

Lecture n. The art of transferring information from the notes of the lecturer to the notes of the lecturees without passing through the minds of either.

Tears n. The means by which masculine will-power is defeated by feminine water-power.

Carnation n. Country where each citizen owns an automobile

Emotion n. Electron movement (also e-motion).

Maritime n. Hour of a wedding.

Catacomb, n. What a feline uses to straighten its hair.

Biology, n. The scientific study of the number two.

Thesaurus, n. A dinosaur that studies words.

Hamlet, n. A small pig.

Tumor, n. One more than one more.

For more words, click here.

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Does Machine Translation Take Longer than Human Translation?

I am always talking about a term: ‘translation editors’. In my opinion, today’s ‘translators’ will change into ‘translation editors’ considering the advances in machine translation. However, I have read an article and the author is more pessimistic than me! The focus of her article is the current situation of translation agencies. She thinks some translation agencies are unreliable because they use machine translation. This is not the case in many translation agencies of course. That’s why you should be careful while choosing an agency. Agencies, like AIM Consulting,  offer the full services -not just translation but also a second round of editing and then a third round of proofreading. That’s the way it should be. Other than translation agencies, she is also talking about post-editing and how machine translation fails when the source text does not have a neat and simple grammatical structure. S/he has found this comment on web, which is quite right: 

“I was with a company back in 1995 that sold consumer translation software for PCs, and they marketed it as something magical: input an English business letter or marketing brochure’s text, and out comes a French or Spanish version. So simple, so inexpensive. No more expensive human translators.  But linguists laughed at the French and Spanish output which was often not only inaccurate, but offensive. Then they thought up the idea to combine machine translation (MT), as it is commonly-called, of business text, often marketing materials, with a low-paid, non-trained cadre of foreign language speakers, not translators, for a service offering to produce faster, accurate translation, but it turned out that this was not a faster process since even those linguists could not quickly “post-edit” poor quality machine translation of marketing content. It takes longer and is much more difficult to do that than just translating manually. Here we are years later facing the same issues. Most marketing material is not written with translation in mind, and contains abbreviated, “jargony” English language that is nearly impossible to translate accurately by machine. “Robo translators” can only work if the source language is carefully controlled, written in a simple grammatical style, and key term dictionaries are developed in advance that  can be used to handle a company’s specific terminology. The “crowdsourcing” model for translation for business purposes is a disaster waiting to happen in my opinion. For a global business, a careful, well thought out, culturally appropriate, quality localization project cannot happen magically with “robo translators” and volunteers.”

And conclusion:

So, why the ‘most’ translation agencies suck? Because it is not about human translation any more. Just learn from the example of Fortune 500 companies and try to understand why they don’t trust your “human” translation offerings. It’s a boiling soup, ladies and gentlemen. It’s time for a wake up call, or you’d be part of statistics.”

For the rest of the article, click here.

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Advertising Translation, Part#5 – Adaptation

The adaptation approach argues that there are insurmountable cultural barriers which require the complete translation of advertisements to reach the target audience. By employing the adaptation process, MNCs frame their ads with a new culture and language.

The adaptation approach regards the words as the representatives of the culture. The most important part is to understand what lies behind those symbolic words. The use and selection of verbal and visual elements are directly related to culture which is perceived differently from nation to nation. Different perceptions require target culture-oriented ways of conveying an advertising message. Therefore, the road to advertising translation is paved with cultural stereotypes. As the definition suggests, cultural stereotypes are the products of interaction and communication. They are set of accepted behaviors and social norms. For example, in USA, a direct and explicit communication style is dominant. Americans value time and efficiency, and place emphasis on individual achievement. Thus, American ads generally aim to give detailed information about the product and they make use of verbal elements rather than visual. Moreover, such kinds of ads are generally humorous so as to capture the audience individually. On the other hand, in Japan, the communication style is generally indirect and implicit. Such an audience would like to have succinct ads. In their media habits, silences have meaning and put emphasize on symbolism.

Considering these differences, the advertising translator should be aware of the role that cultural stereotypes play.

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Advertising Translation, Part#4 – Standardization

In many cases, producing culture-specific ads or translating already existing ads involves large sums of money and a qualified work force. MNCs that do not want to invest a great deal of money in advertising translation are not in the pursuit of long term profits. Although they try to lower the costs, at the same time, they do not want to lose the attention of target audience. They highlight comprehension rather than internalization. The solution to such kind of approach is “standardization”. The motive behind this approach is that consumers share similar needs according to some cultural, economical, regional and linguistic patterns.

Using these communicational and advertising styles, MNCs try to standardize the ads by modifying the original one. This approach takes advantage of the similarities between cultures. They generally use the original ad print or video after translating the slogans and, in some cases, the brand names. The brand names are often kept in its original form to create a strong image. However, in some cases, keeping the original brand names can be hazardous since the pronunciations of them differ from language to language. For example, in China, the name Coca-Cola was first rendered as ke-kou-ke-la. Unfortunately, it was too late when the coke company discovered what the phrase exactly means: female horse stuffed with wax. After this mistake, Coca-Cola researched 40000 Chinese characters and found a close phonetic equivalent: ko-kou-ko-le. This phrase can be loosely translated as happiness in the mouth (lingo72). This example shows how the phonetic knowledge and cultural awareness of the translator is important. The advertising campaigns ignoring culture and language can result in serious mistakes.

Translating the slogans, the translator should have a control over the language of target audience. The successful translation or standardization of slogans enhances the memorability and the impact of ad campaign. However, a number of MNCs prefer to keep the original brand name and slogan. For example, Adidas, Nike and Nokia use the same slogans under their brand names ignoring the target audience’s comprehension. On the other hand, L’Oréal standardizes its slogan in every language which is originally “L’Oréal, Parce que vous le valez bien”. It is translated into Turkish and English without any interpretation, which means the standardization approach is employed effectively. Considering the L’Oréal example, it may seem that that approach promotes the global image of the product and brand. Nevertheless, it is not the case for most of other slogans. When the advertising companies take advantage of the sound system to simplify memory recall, it gets harder to standardize the same slogan for each target audience. Examples include “If anyone can, Canon can” and “O2, see what you can do” (t, sf189).In both examples, the standardization approach falls short of having the intended memory recall effect on target audience. When standardized (translated literally like L’Oréal example), the slogans lose their alliterations.

Advertising translation part#1

Advertising translation part#2

Advertising translation part#3

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Advertising Translation Part#1

In this blog post, I will publish the first part of my previous research: Advertising Translation. I always believed  that  MNCs should work with translators while adapting some other ads, produced in another country. I will publish my work part by part. What do you think about advertising translation?

With the improvements in technology, the trade policies of governments and global market competition, a number of multinational corporations (MNCs) have turned to international advertising. As the name implies, international advertising is the conveyance of a same advertising message to different countries. International advertising is the core of global marketing. The most debated question in international advertising is how to transfer the same message across cultures. The role of language and translation is of vital importance while transferring an advertising message across countries. Perceived as finding the equivalences of every single word between two different languages, the translation process is too often ignored in a multi-cultural business context. As a result, the managers of MNCs employ wrong advertising strategies by thinking only in business terms. However, each target culture should be treated individually. With the purpose of creating the intended effect, advertising translation is supposed to be based on adapting every single element of the campaign. In this paper, three different ways of transferring the advertising message will be examined within the domain of the translational studies. The first approach employed by managers is globalization. This approach ignores all the cultural and economical differences between countries. On the other hand, the standardization approach supports the translation of certain aspects of advertising campaigns. Adaptation is the final solution to those differences between countries because this approach defends the necessity of creating a culture-specific message in each country.

Müge YILDIRIM, Bogazici University- Translation and Interpreting Studies, Spring 2010.

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