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On September 27, 2023 the Circle sponsored an online presentation on the subject of Computer-Assisted Interpreting. The featured speaker was Cris Silva, an ATA-certified Portuguese to/from English conference interpreter and translator. In addition to her extensive conference interpretation experience, Cris also has an MA in translation, an MAS in interpreter training from the University of Geneva and a terminology manager certification from the European Certification and Qualification Association.

Cris began by describing how CAI can enhance and improve the conference interpreting experience by increasing quality and extending productivity. Much of the presentation focused on how an interpreter can best prepare for an assignment in over the phone (OTP) or video remote (VRI) interpreting. A crucial part of preparation is knowing how to best manage terminology and glossaries.

We learned that many software applications exist that can help interpreters to extract terminology from documents and manage it effectively. One such method is through the use of Google Sheets, a spreadsheet application which allows users to create and edit files online. Since this app is compatible with Excel, the interpreter can create glossaries in table form in either a single language or in a dual language format. Other useful apps include:

  • Sketch Engine: this application can assist the interpreter in managing a text corpus, which is defined as a large collection of texts in digital formats. It can help the interpreter not only to master terminology but also to become more knowledgeable about the words, phrases and texts most often encountered when interpreting in a particular field.
  • Interplex: a first generation application which can import and export data from Excel and create multi-lingual glossaries.
  • IH (Interpreters Help): a second generation application with a sophisticated dashboard which can assist conference interpreters in preparing for a particular job by specifying the particular requirements for the job such as equipment needs, dress codes, security codes, etc. It also allows interpreters to share glossaries with the community, extract terms from text quickly and prepare flashcards to review glossaries.
  • Fillerbuster: is an interesting application which records the interpreter’s voice and provides analytics about delivery, thus helping to eliminate fillers. Another app which can assist performance is Orai, which makes a video of the interpreter’s delivery and critiques it as regards characteristics like pitch and energy level. It produces a scorecard which evaluates the interpreter as a public speaker.

It was very interesting to learn about new developments in the ever-changing worked of computer-assisted interpreting. The Circle thanks Cris for her very informative and enjoyable presentation.


Patricia Stumpp


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