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(FREE) useful tools for translators

ALEX

Hello everyone! I must say THANK YOU to all of you who read and shared the last entry. I hope you really liked it and found it useful.

Here in Edinburgh we are officially in winter. It is freezing and windy outside, so for me, I prefer to stay at home chilling reading articles that may help my business or may be useful for you.

As (most of) you probably know, translators generally work in a stressful environment, where timing is crucial. But due to all the improvements in the technological era, we can find very useful tools for us! Not just to translate, but for other activities related to our business (marketing, promotion, planning, schedules, etc.). But, at the same time, we need to think about our budget, so thinking about productivity and how to improve it results in more costs, which most of the times is necessary.

So today I bring you some useful tools for translators and (most of them) are FREE! Of course, you can pay for them, but that will depend on the size of your business and your needs.

IATE, Linguee and Context (Reverso): I am sure that you know all of them, but just in case, I wanted to mention these three terminological tools. IATE is the multilingual term base of the European Union. I consider this tool as a must for every translator, especially because you can find a term in different fields, their sources, translation and see whether the translation of this term is reliable or not.

Linguee is a multilingual dictionary and corpus which shows you not just the translation of a term but a whole sentence where the term appears in different sources and context, so you can choose the best translation depending on those elements. And Context (by Reverso) is a very similar tool to the last one, but you don’t really see the source, just the field of the source (economics, subtitles of movies, etc.)

Hootsuite: is a social media platform where you can mange all your social media accounts from one place. I think it is useful especially for businesses or freelancers who want to manage their time better when doing marketing in social media or just updating it. This platform offers different plans, depending on your needs: free (for limited social media accounts) or paid. Check here which plan suits you.

Canva: is a platform for design. There you can edit, make and design anything you want: blog, titles, images, twitter images, leaflets, letters… You can use the free images and designs they offer or pay for some of them. You can also upload your own images and add text to whatever you want. It is a great tool if you are writing a blog or a newsletter but you do not know anything about design.

Evernote: Translators and every freelancer have a lot of things in mind, all the time. So, sometimes it is a bit difficult to keep in mind all those things we need to do, send, like, follow son social media … We can’t remember everything! So Evernote is a very useful tool to do that. It is not just to take notes about things we are interested or things we need to do. You can add alarms, take photos and much more. I am still learning to use it properly, but if you want to know more about this tool, click here.

Pixabay: the only thing I could think when I found this website was: “why I did not find this before?” It is a bank image free of copyright! And you must be thinking, “why is that website useful for a translator?”. Well, as I said before, being a freelance translator is being a business, and if you have a blog or newsletter, and want to upload images there, you need free copyright images, which are sometimes difficult to find, or at least images that are good quality. So, this is the reason why I recommend this tool.

Other tools that you may use are the forums of platforms for translators such as ProZ, Translators’ Café or even the Wordreference forum. You can use them to look for terminology doubts, information about clients, agencies, etc. And also is a way to have a profile to your services if you do not want to have your own website.

In my case, I am a planning freak, so an essential tool for me is a diary (Moleskines are my favourites!), but you can use Google Calendar or iCalendar or an app in your mobile or computer that helps you to organise yourself. I find also very useful buying a monthly planner, so I can see in a look everything that I got in a month such as blog entries, projects, deadlines, things to do, etc. (I know, not all of them are free).

And last but not least, a tool that I highly recommend to have, but I am afraid the best of them are not free, is a CAT tool (Computer Assisted Translation tools). I think they are a great and helpful tools for translators, although sometimes they may come back to haunt us. Some translation clients or agencies can pay us less if we use a CAT tool with a Translation Memory they give us. But if you have a very tight deadline for a project, they can be very useful. I mainly work with SDL Trados, but I also know Wordfast and Déjà Vu.

This is everything for today! I hope you liked it and find useful.

Do you know any other tools useful for translators? Or for business?

Next week you will receive the 3rd chapter of the internationalisation guide, so subscribe to my newsletter and you will receive the 3 first chapters!

Thank you and see you soon! 🙂

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