Gengo’s newly hailed Wordsmith is Eduardo, a Brazilian native whose goal is to become a “serial translator” in different countries. Currently learning his third language, this hall-of-famer wants fellow translators to know the importance of exposing yourself every day to the language you want to master.
What languages do you speak and what are your experiences with learning them?
I’m from the beautiful city of Rio de Janeiro so Brazilian Portuguese is my mother tongue. I studied English for years and, in 2011, I moved to the equally beautiful city of Miami in the U.S. for a few months to study English and gain fluency in the language. In 2013, while studying Chinese in Taiwan, I found out about Gengo, took the test, and started working part-time on the platform. I’m now back in Taiwan resuming my Chinese classes and getting ready for when Gengo (hopefully) opens their Chinese to Portuguese language pair. My most ambitious goal is to become a “serial translator” and move to a new country every year or so to learn the language and add it to my translation portfolio.
What are your favorite translation tools?
For translating jobs outside of Gengo (or when it’s a DOC or XLS file), I like using SDL Trados Studio. It’s a very efficient and professional CAT tool, and they have an affordable option for freelancers and beginner translators. When I need help with a term, one of my favorite websites is Thesaurus.com, which allows me to understand the deeper meaning of a word rather than just see a few translation options such as in a dictionary. Linguee.com shows how the word you are searching for is being translated throughout the web. I also recommend Urban Dictionary (for informal texts) and Microsoft Language Portal (for IT and software translations).
What are your tips to become a Wordsmith?
I recommend taking jobs you are sure you can finish. Sometimes when I accept a job, I notice that half or more of it has been translated by someone else. I can also see that the previous translator has spent several hours on the job and then given up halfway through. This not only takes up time and cuts down productivity, but also prevents you from taking a new job that you could actually finish.
Apart from that, I believe living in another language can help you speed up your productivity and translate jobs more easily. You don’t necessarily have to live abroad, but you can expose yourself to your other language through movies, TV, music, YouTube videos, news, books and blogs. You should watch, read and listen to everything in your target language and set your mobile phone and all your gadgets to the language you want to progress in. Doing this not only helps to improve your confidence, but also helps to provide you with more accurate and natural-sounding translations, so those visits to the good old dictionary become less frequent every day.
Want to become a Gengo translator?