The Top 8 Most Useful Tools for a Professional German Translator

As a German translator it is important to be well prepared to undertake translation projects professionally and in a suitable time frame that can attract a reasonable level of remuneration for the time it takes to complete the translation. Translators are well past using a dictionary to find difficult, less used words, let alone transferring documents to and from a client.

Professional German Translator

The first and most important tool for a German translator is an effective means of communication so no time is lost when completing a translation job. This means having a good, co-operative smart phone with a suitable data plan and an alert feature that reminds the translator that a message has been received. The alert feature means the translator can get back to the client in a timely manner so any issues regarding the translation can be sorted out quickly leaving more time to do the best translation. Once this has been established there is a whole wealth of useful apps to complement it.

Google Drive

A translator can create many files which can be stored in the cloud using Google Drive. It’s a convenient file sharing facility which allows the chance for translator colleagues who are working in different areas of the same translation project to exchange, share and discuss files without taking them home first. It has an office companion facility which lets you to create, edit and quickly get access to recent files and spreadsheets, and presentations.

Lexibar

This is a useful keyboard facility that allows quick access to special characters not usually available the normal keyboard. The German translator can install a language-specific toolbar for French, Spanish and more than 22 other languages but of course it’s only necessary for the translator to download the pair language he or she usually uses in translation work.

Google Hangouts

This is a useful communications service which allows a web-based and mobile video facility. Translators can quite easily organise a video meeting for at least than 12 participants. The only requirement is that each participant will need to initiate a Google+ account. After this, text chat is enabled and the subscriber can share videos and pictures.

Evernote

This is essentially a digital cabinet where translators can save and store a lot of information. Evernote is an outstanding app that makes use of the idea of save-it-for-later.

Google Dropbox

This is a must have app that most translators use as it stores files in cloud which can be accessed anytime anywhere. They can also be shared with clients and it’s secure because Dropbox goes through a process that encrypts everything that’s uploaded or downloaded using an HTTPS connection. The only restriction is there is only 2GB of storage available free so it might be necessary to pay to use the service.

Dictionary

This is a great dictionary app which is free with over 2,000,000 definitions and synonyms which are sourced from Dictionary.com and Thesaurus.com. The app is great for locating word origin, idioms, and spelling suggestions. If you happen to specialise in legal or medical translations the Dictionary has a vast collection of legal, medical and financial definitions, acronyms and slang.

Snapseed

If you need to include any images in a translation the Snapseed app tool transforms quite ordinary photos into ones that are outstanding. Photos can be tweaked so they look perfect.

Swift Keyboard

Speed is often what German translators lack but not with the Swift Keyboard which reduces the toil of touchscreen typing. As you type, Swiftkey will reveal suggestions for complete words which it believes are the most likely next words. It’s like a mind reader. Words are inserted without effort using a simple tap. It is available in 61 languages.