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June 22, 2017

Speech recognition: no longer a thing of the future

              I’ll confess up front that I’ve always been something of a sceptic when it comes to claims that speech recognition is about to become the next big thing. During my time as an academic phonetician I did a placement with a speech technology…

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June 15, 2017

Do you hear that? It’s cockney accent!

Rosetta’s London office is located on Whitechapel High Street near Aldgate, very much in the heart of cockney London. The traditional definition of a cockney is someone who was born within the sound of Bow bells, which ring out from the church of Saint Mary le Bow in Cheapside just…

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May 31, 2017

Translating recipes – Part 3

In the last of my three blog posts on translating recipes, I tackle the vexed issue of quantities and measurements and then the more delightful experience of culinary exploration. Quantities Even countries which share a common language offer a baffling array of kitchen measuring methods. Younger British cooks who are…

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May 24, 2017

Translating recipes – Part 2

Following on from my last blog post looking at the challenges of converting the ingredients used in a foreign recipe into your target language, here I’ll be discussing some of the other issues that arise especially when it comes to availability and different cooking traditions. Ready made products A tricky…

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May 17, 2017

Translating recipes and related cultural issues

Recently I have done several projects which involved translating recipes. On the face of it this seems like a simple task: take the list of ingredients and convert into the target language; then simply do the same for the recipe method. Recipes tend to be very well structured, written in…

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May 10, 2017

The language of sheep counting

My recent transatlantic travels and associated jet-lag lead me to thoughts of the traditional cures for insomnia. All I can say is, if you rely on counting sheep to fall asleep, I don’t recommend switching to the traditional English sheep counting system highlighted in a blog post which I stumbled…

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May 3, 2017

Translating Miffy: the life of Patricia Crampton

  The death of Dick Bruna, the creator of Miffy, in February this year was widely reported. Obituaries dedicated to the Dutch illustrator and author appeared all around the globe, underlining the truly international appeal of his most beloved creation. Less widely reported was the death of the award-winning and…

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April 26, 2017

British maths teachers turn to Chinese translation for inspiration

  Chinese school students regularly top the world rankings for their performance in mathematics. So perhaps it is not surprising that the publishing company Harper Collins is looking to Chinese maths textbooks for inspiration. In a deal with the Shanghai Century Publishing Group, the education division at Harper Collins have…

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April 19, 2017

The Oxfors comma Court case

  “For want of a comma, we have this case.” David Barron, Boston federal appeals judge   Grammarians, punctuation pedants, eagle-eyed copy editors and other language enthusiasts took enormous delight in the recent US court ruling, in which a group of dairy delivery drivers were awarded millions of dollars owed…

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April 12, 2017

The language of the marathon

This blog post is shamelessly influenced by your blogger’s obsession with running! April is the month when Londoners and Bostonians turn out in their droves for two of the finest city marathons. And this year I will be attempting to run both, a total of 52.4 miles with just six…

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