While the market is full of tools for translators which keep improving and expanding all the time, interpreters might be left wondering exactly what of all of these they can use for their own work. Some might say that the interpreting industry has a weird relationship with technology but there are many tools and technologies which are being created in order to help interpreters make their jobs a little easier.
If you’re one of those people who don’t really do well with adding tools and apps into their everyday work but wish to see if there is a way for them to use them to their advantage. Here are some of the simplest yet very effective tools which might just make a professional interpreter’s work just a little easier.
- Interplex lite
This simple app allows its users to view the Interplex glossary databases on their iPhones, iPads and even Mac and Windows computers and it offers the user a sample database which comes with Interplex. This app offers a fast and easy to use search feature which allows word searches in many different languages and can help you start learning how to use it fast and efficiently on your computer and then migrate to a mobile device, making it a lot easier to use on the go and in times of need.
- Sounds: The pronunciation app
This great tool was created based on the book “Sound Foundations” by pronunciation expert Adrian Underhill and was designed in order to help those who interpret in English. Not only will you be able to study the Phonemic Chart in both UK and US English but you will also be able to record your own pronunciations of words in order to make a comparison and keep improving. There are also plenty or activities like fun quizzes to help you further improve your pronunciation.
No matter how well you know a language, there are always times where you need to practice your skills a little bit and can’t find the best way to do so. This great language app can truly help you learn any language through a plethora of fun activities. The best thing about it is that it will often ask you to pronounce a word or translate a sentence through the microphone, something that can be especially helpful for both translators and interpreters equally.
- Word Reference
One of the best and most valuable online databases of multilingual dictionaries definitely has to be Word Reference. Not only does this powerful dictionary provide quick translations of English, Spanish, and Italian words into European and Asian languages, it also offers the possibility for you to get involved in forums on translation and the English language and further expand your skills and knowledge.
- Listening Drill
Last but not least, if you’re looking for a foreign language practice drill which will allow you to import all sorts of files, from TED Talks to audio books and find the right subtitles in all sorts of languages and allow you to practice your language skills and listen to the ways certain native words and phrases are translated into other languages. There is a paid and a free version, so you can start slow and then upgrade to the paid version which will allow you to have bilingual subtitles on a video of your choice.
Finding the right tool for your needs
If you are just staring to use more tools and apps for your interpretation needs, or you are new to this industry, these apps and tools will be the best introduction for you and will definitely help you start to understand how you can use technology to your advantage. Translators usually always have both online and offline tools which they use in order to make their job a lot easier and themselves a lot more productive and that can be the case for interpreters too if they use the right tools.
The secret here is to start slow and learn how to use these simple tools in order to get the best results. Whether you need to freshen up your language skills or need to improve your pronunciation, these tools will definitely have your back at any time and help you make your work a lot more professional. Which one of these tools are you most excited to give a try?
Eliza Abbott is a freelancer whose passion lies in creative writing. She completed a degree in Computer Science and writes about ways to apply machine learning to deal with complex issues. Insights on education, helpful tools and valuable university experiences – she has got you covered;)