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Ensuring consistency across a big technical document translation

As discussed in many of earlier blogs, consistency is one of the most important points that define a high quality translation. Moreover, the issue of consistency becomes more prominent when a document is very big and hence involves a team of translators who work on smaller units of the same document. Moreover the idea behind a high quality technical translation is that the usage of technical terms must be accurate and uniform across the document, however large it may be.

Hindi is the Indian national language and is spoken in the northern regions of India. Thus, most of the stuff that is to be read by the north Indian people is to be translated in Hindi. For instance, a training module for drivers/house keeping staff that is originally in English would need to be translated to Hindi to be understood by the target audience. A technical machine manuals which has to be used by the technicians in Delhi, would need simple English to Hindi translation.

Now coming to the concept of consistency, a big document, say a 500 page manual which has been translated by 10 translators within 10 days, would definitely have consistency issues, if they have not been sorted out at the first place. Even though the varying terms used by these 10 people could be correct, but using different Hindi term for the same English term across different pages of a manual would only confuse the reader!

As discussed in our earlier blog, CAT tools help us in maintaining consistency across a big document. In case a translators’ group or an agency is not comfortable using CAT tools, a simple vocabulary/glossary of key terms is very helpful in maintaining consistency.

A thorough proofing by an experienced proofreader would help eliminate any such issues.

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