Archive for the ‘Text Types’ Category

Text Analysis, Instructional Texts (User Manuals / Instruction Guides)

January 23, 2012

User manuals, instruction guides, handling instructions and operating guidelines are texts where two elements are equally important. The terms and facts about the described tool, machine or software matter a lot. And, of course, the user must be able to perform a certain task with the tool, machine or software. Therefore, the needle of the Text Type Detector, T-TD, goes to upward right.

What is important when translating user manuals and instruction guides?



Text Analysis, feat. the Text Type Detector

February 2, 2011

Today, I am going to kick off a new series. And I will introduce a cool little tool to you: The personal Text Type Detector, or T-TD.

I mentioned before that texts have different types. So, what does this mean for translation?
How do you grasp the type of a text? And what do you do to get it right; the transfer of the types of text from one language to another?

In my experience, all texts have three top issues to ponder, three text parameters featuring in every text. First, the author and her/his style and storyline. Second, and somewhat opposed to the first, there are the readers/users and what they should do or how they should react when reading the text. Third, there’s terminology or the literal meaning. This trinity rules every text. But, and actually we must capitalize this BUT, the weight of the three chunks varies a lot between the different types. All parameters are closely related to the purpose of a text.

Text analysis itself is easy. With the T-TD. I feed the text into this mind tool and see where the meter goes. The element that dominates a text is where the needle sticks.