Interpreting Performance - 12 July 08 TAC

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Thoughts and tips on becoming a patent translator ~特許翻訳への道 成功するために~

This article by James Phillips originally appeared in the February 2008 issue of the Tsuyaku-Honyaku Journal. Reprinted with permission.

People that are considering a career in patent translation often seem to have exactly the same questions. In this article I will attempt to answer those questions, give some hints as to how you can study for free, and give some useful advice regarding how to get work once qualified.

The following is a list of questions I am asked most often.

1) Is there a demand for patent translators?
2) Do you think I would make a good patent translator?
3) What is the best way to become a patent translator?
4) Can I really study for free?
5) Should I work in-house, or freelance?
6) How can I get freelance work?

1. Is there a demand for patent translators?
特許翻訳の需要はあるのか?


This question is easy to answer. Yes, there is always a demand for GOOD patent translators. A good translator will usually have the following:

a) An excellent understanding of the source and target languages.
b) A detailed knowledge of the subject being translated.
c) Specialist knowledge relating to how to translate patent specifications.
d) A meticulous approach with regards to quality and deadlines.

If you already have a) and b) then you have an excellent chance of achieving your objectives as c) and d) can be picked up with relative ease (at least compared to a) and b)!). Having a specialist subject that you know inside-out is an enormous advantage. It will make the task of translating much more straightforward and it will also be much easier to sell yourself as a translator. The translation work itself will also be more interesting for you because if you have an in-depth knowledge of the subject it is probably something you like (hopefully!). If you do not have any kind of specialization then it will be more difficult to sell yourself to potential customers and the fees you can command are likely to be lower than a specialist. However, if there is a subject you have a strong interest in that you feel you can pick-up with relative ease, then maybe it will be possible to turn that subject into your specialization.

2. Do you think I would make a good patent translator?
自分は良い翻訳者になれるのか?


All good translators have one thing in common: a willingness to ask questions and to never stop learning. If you have a willingness to learn and preferably some kind of specialist subject then there is every chance that you will be able to become a successful patent translator. You should be aware though that this will require a relatively sustained amount of effort over a reasonable period of time. Like most skills worth having, it is not the kind of skill you can pick up overnight.

3. What is the best way to become a patent translator?
特許翻訳者になるための最良の方法とは何か?


I obviously have a vested interest in this subject as I provide courses in patent translation via my site at horsefrog.com and there is a bewildering array of courses offered by a wide range of translation schools. However, such courses will often serve merely as a springboard for entry into the business, but what approach should then be taken to gaining the right kind of experience that will help you to become a high-quality patent translator? The most common route is to join a patent office or the patent department of a company as a junior translator. When choosing such a job, take care to be sure that you will be tutored in an effective manner by the staff of the company. The level of expertise offered by a patent office or company patent department will often be higher than that offered by a translation agency but you may find that entry is more difficult as a result so a translation agency may also be considered. If, for example, you have already had a career spanning a number of years as an engineer, you may find that you can skip this step altogether and go straight to being a freelancer by making use of your specialty.

4. Can I really study for free?
本当にお金をかけずに勉強できるのか?


Yes, self-training is possible to a certain extent. The big advantage with the Internet is that it provides a wealth of information that can be harvested for the purposes of study. For example, it is possible to search the USPTO for a US patent that has a corresponding Japanese patent and then search the JPO for the equivalent Japanese patent. This will often yield two almost identical documents that can then be used for the purposes of studying. You can also get documents in the exact field you wish to study by searching in a manner corresponding to this field. Detailed instructions of how to do this are provided on the horsefrog.com site. We also run free online patent translation workshops on the horsefrog site once a month where you can have a short translation evaluated for free and we provide free translator level evaluations. Free glossaries and a forum are also provided. The JPO, USPTO, and WIPO sites themselves are also excellent free sources of information regarding patents and how they should be written.

One suggestion I would have if you are studying by yourself though is to be very careful not to study simply by memorizing sentences. A much better approach is to read the document you are intending to translate very carefully, gain a full understanding of the invention first, then translate the document in the manner that you yourself would actually have written the document had you actually been the author. Finally, compare your translation to the actual original document. This will give your translations a much more natural feeling than attempting to translate a document word for word. Joining a translation organization such as JTF or JAT will also enable you to share your experiences with others in the same situation and pick up a great deal of useful information that would otherwise be extremely difficult to acquire. The more enthusiastic amongst you may consider attending the upcoming IJET-19 conference to be held at a beautiful location in Okinawa on April 12th/13th. This will be a particularly valuable opportunity for those new to translation to pick up lots of useful information and will include several presentations on the subject of patent translation.

5. Should I work in-house, or freelance?
インハウスとフリーランス、どちらを選ぶべきか?


This really very much depends on the kind of person you are. If you are a social person that likes to be around other people all the time then you are probably more suited to working in-house. If, on the other hand, you put great value on independence, would love the freedom to make your own schedule as you please and don’t at all mind being by yourself a lot, then freelancing may well seem like heaven to you.

6. How can I get freelance work once I feel I am ready to become a patent translator?
フリーランスで仕事を得るにはどうしたらよいのか?


There are many ways to get work once you feel you are equipped to complete the work effectively. There is, of course, the traditional approach of applying for jobs through the various media. However, a more proactive approach is likely to meet with much more success. For example, make a list of the companies that you would most like to work for (companies that most closely match your field of specialty, for example). Then find some material by the company of your choice (for example, a short section of a patent belonging to that company). Translate the material and send it to the company concerned, together with a letter explaining who you are, what you do, and why you would like to work for that particular company. This approach is much more likely to meet with success and is widely considered by people in the translation business to be the most effective. It naturally involves more effort than the more traditional approaches, but the company can see the quality of your work immediately and is likely to be more interested in somebody who has shown such an obvious interest in their company rather than somebody who has simply sent hundreds of general-looking resumes to lots of different companies.

I hope you have found the content of this article of use. If you have any further questions please feel free to either post them on the horsefrog site or send them to me directly at [email protected]. I always go to great lengths to answer any questions I receive as soon as possible. In the meantime, good luck to anybody who is considering becoming a patent translator. Maybe I will see you in sunny Okinawa!

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第5回新人翻訳者コンテスト

日英コンテスト英日コンテストの最終候補作が決まりました。


最終審査結果は12月25日に発表いたします。

日本翻訳者協会(JAT)はこの度、優秀な新人実務翻訳者の発掘と奨励を目的とした第5回JAT新人翻訳者コンテストを開催いたします。

日本翻訳者協会(JAT)は、翻訳者の翻訳技能の向上や、翻訳という仕事への理解を深めることを目的として設立された団体です。主に日本語・英語間の実務翻訳に従事する個人翻訳者および通訳者を会員としており、現在の会員数は約400名です。以下、コンテストの概要についてご説明します。


第5回JAT新人翻訳者コンテスト




  • 主催: 特定非営利活動法人 日本翻訳者協会(JAT)
  • 目的: 優秀な新人実務翻訳者の発掘と奨励
  • 応募資格: 実務翻訳(放送・映像翻訳も含む)経験3年未満の方(JAT会員・非会員は問いません。過去のコンテストに応募した方も入賞者以外は応募可とします。)
  • 応募部門: 日英翻訳部門、英日翻訳部門
  • 応募料: なし
  • 各賞:
    第1位   日英・英日の各部門1名
    副賞として2009年2月14日(土)〜15日(日)にオーストラリア・シドニーで開催予定のIJET-20参加費、
    往復航空券、3日分の現地宿泊費、およびJAT年会費1年分無料
    第2位   日英・英日の各部門1名
    副賞としてJAT年会費1年分無料


出題・審査員




  • 英日部門: 佐藤綾子、石原ゆかり、千桝靖
  • 日英部門: マルコム・ジェームス、ケン・ワグナー、リー・シーマン


開催スケジュール




  • 2008年9月1日 JATウェブサイトに日英・英日両部門の課題文を掲載
  • 2008年9月28日 24:00(日本時間) 訳文提出締切 
  • 2008年11月23日 最終候補作5件をウェブサイトで発表
  • 2008年12月25日 JATウェブサイトにて受賞者の発表(受賞者には直接連絡)
  • 2009年2月14日 受賞者をIJET-20に招待

■応募について


課題文について


課題文は、一般的な読者を対象とした内容のものです。課題文の上に記載した指示をよく読んだ上で、翻訳してください。過去のコンテストの課題文については、過去のコンテストのページをご覧下さい。

日英コンテストの原文をダウンロード
英日コンテストの原文をダウンロード


訳文の提出方法


JAT新人翻訳コンテスト 応募フォーム

  • 応募者は、上記の応募フォームを記入し、訳文を添付して送信してください。ファイル形式はMS Wordファイルまたはテキストファイルのみとします。
  • 訳文ファイルには応募者の名前やコメントなどを書かないでください(つまり訳文のみ)。
  • 訳文のファイル名は次のようにしてください(ファイル名は必ず半角英数で記入してください)。

CONTEST J your name (例: CONTEST J Roger Federer)

  • 提出後、こちらから確認のためのメールを返送します。hotmail などの無料のWebメール(フリーメール)をお使いの場合、メールが届かないことがありますのでご注意ください(迷惑メールフォルダをご確認ください)。
  • 応募はお一人1部門につき1回に限ります(応募期間中、一人で2回以上応募することは認められません)。

著作権



  • 提出された翻訳文はJATの所有となり、応募者には返却されません。
  • 翻訳文の著作権はすべて主催者であるJATに帰属します。

  • JATは、受賞者の名前、受賞対象の翻訳文、写真や画像、参考情報をJATのウェブサイト、メーリングリスト、電子・印刷出版物等に掲載するすべての権利を有します。

審査



  • 出題者の作成する審査基準に則って、審査会が第一次審査、第二次審査と最終審査を行います。最終審査に残った5件の候補作については、2008年11月23日にID番号と訳文がJATウェブサイトで公開されます。
  • 審査員の決定は最終的なものとします。結果についての問い合わせや異議申し立てはできませんので、あらかじめご了承ください。


各賞の内容


第1位の受賞者に対してJATは以下を支払います。

  • 居住地からIJET開催地までの往復航空券(エコノミークラス、最短ルート)
  • 鉄道運賃(グリーン車、一等車、寝台車は除く)

  • 自家用車を使用する場合は、移動に要したガソリン代および駐車料金
  • IJETの開催地またはその最寄りのホテルの宿泊代(3泊分、スタンダードルーム)

  • 支払いのためには領収書が必要となります。
  • 詳細については、受賞者と個別に相談の上、決定します。

失格


以下の場合は、失格となります。

  • 申請不備(応募フォームの記入事項もれ、ファイルの名称が間違っているなど)
  • 提出期限後の提出

  • 他人の名前によって応募した、または応募者以外の人が翻訳したことが判明した場合
  • 記載事項に虚偽の記入をした場合、またその他の不正があった場合


お問い合わせは [email protected] にお願いします。

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通訳パフォーマンス_レクチャー原稿_Short Version

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通訳パフォーマンス_PPTプレゼンテーションファイル

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日通訳パフォーマンス_概要&発表者

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日通訳パフォーマンス_レクチャー原稿_Complete Version

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日通訳パフォーマンス_同通スピーチ原稿[帰国子女物語:バイリンガルからバイカルチュアルへ]

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Takayuki Oshimi - 21 June 08 TAC

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Kiyoshi Fujimura - 5 July 08 Kansai Meeting

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Chris Pearce - 5 July 08 Kansai Meeting

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Healthcare Interpreting Handout

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IJET19 Tomii Atsushi Proceedings PDF

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IJET19 Recap: Fred Uleman's Translation Workshop

For the next in our release of full videos of several presentations from IJET-19, we're pleased to continue the series with the following presentation from Fred Uleman:




Title: Translation Workshop
Speaker: Fred Uleman

Abstract:
This is not a presentation in which I will give you the right answers. Rather, we will all be working on a short passage (a company president talking about how he turned things around) and will arrive at, if not the right answers, at least some interesting ways to approach the job, together. I will try to have a sample translation or two as starting points for the discussion, but these will not be my translations and I expect us to disagree with much of what they did. This is a discussion to bring out useful mental tricks that you can then use in your own translation work. Please come prepared to participate.
.

(Note that these videos are available for members only. The password required to view the videos can be found on the JAT mailing list.)




Stay tuned for more presentation over the next few weeks and months!

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17 May 2008 [audio]

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Chris Blakeslee on Economic Thinking for Translators

JAT Director Chris Blakeslee, an economics and finance specialist, has written a thought-provoking article that frames everything a translator does in an economic perspective. Use the formulas he provides to find out whether it makes more economic sense for you to hire an editor or to use a bookkeeper, and enjoy the JAT nijikai beer knowing you are actually being paid for it!

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Minutes for the 2008 JAT Annual General Meeting

The JAT Annual General Meeting was held on May 17, 2008 at the Forum 8 in Shibuya. All four voting items were passed by majority vote. For details, please see the official minutes.

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IJET19 Recap:「風が吹けば桶屋が儲かる」、因果関係の表現 by Atsushi Tomii

For the next in our release of full videos of several presentations from IJET-19, we're pleased to continue the series with the following presentation from Atsushi Tomii:




Title: 「風が吹けば桶屋が儲かる」、因果関係の表現
Speaker: 富井篤

Abstract:

技術文とは、因果関係の羅列といっても過言ではない。したがって、英和翻訳・和英翻訳を問わず、因果関係の表現は、決して避けて通ることのできるものではない。

このセッションでは、(1)英語における因果関係を表すさまざまの表現法を提示し、(2)これらの表現法を駆使して、いかに因果関係が表現できるかについて解説し、(3)さらに、これらの表現法をいろいろ組み合わせることによりさまざまの表現ができることを、因果関係の数と文章の数との関係にも触れながら検証し、(4)最後に、実例をもとに確認していく。

補足として、因果関係の表現法をいろいろ組み合わせる際の注意点をいくつか提示する。

.

(Note that these videos are available for members only. The password required to view the videos can be found on the JAT mailing list.)




Stay tuned for more presentation over the next few weeks and months!

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通訳翻訳ジャーナル2008夏号と特許翻訳スーパーガイド

Tsuhon Journal Summer 2008

日本翻訳者協会と通訳翻訳ジャーナルの「~英語翻訳のプロたちが綴る~後進への招待状」連載企画ですが、2008年夏号(本日発売)には佐藤綾子さんが「そして10年後 アポロ、パソコン、インターネット…Googleへ」という記事を寄稿しました。第四回JAT新人翻訳コンテスト(英日部門)の課題文を例題として取り上げ、グーグルを表現辞典として利用する方法について語る内容です。

4月に沖縄で開催されたIJET-19の特集もあります。詳しくは誌面で。

次号(8月21日発売)にはディビッド・ピーターセンさんの「Source Language Versus Target Language Bias in Translation」と題された記事が掲載される予定です。

51ouylgzjgl_sl500_aa240_.jpg

最近発売された『特許翻訳スーパーガイド』ではジェームス・フィリップスさんが「実践!特許翻訳講座」(誌上講座)の和文英訳編を執筆しました。特許用語と日常用語の違い、日本人翻訳者によく見られる誤りとその改善策など、盛りだくさんの内容です。

杉山範雄さんも「特許翻訳でここまでできる 品質管理・作業効率アップの極意」として8ページにわたる密度の高い記事を執筆しました。秀丸エディタの効果的な使い方をはじめ、いかに効率的に作業をするかという極めて実践的な内容です。

通訳翻訳ウェブ

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通訳翻訳ジャーナル 2008夏

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