Technical glossary

Technical glossary of translation terms

Technical glossary

Occasionally, you’ll come across some unfamiliar terms on the intercontact website or when talking to people in the localisation and translation industry. You’ll find many of these terms listed here with short explanations.

Technical glossary


Although interpretation and translation are often thought of as similar, the work is actually very different. While a translator works with written material, an interpreter works with spoken language and in real time, "live" situations. An interpreter makes it possible for two or more parties to communicate when they don’t share a common language. Their job is to deliver the original messages from the source language into the target language as accurately as possible. Interpreters can work in person or remotely, conveying the speakers’ messages via video and audio feeds, or over the phone.

Synonyms: Interpretation
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