Read our Translation Blog

Get the latest fun and facts from the language industry with our blog!

Need advice on website translation and localization?
Browse our ONLINE SHOP for ebooks on how to translate a website!

LingoStar’s Blog blog, website translation and localization canada, translation and interpretation vancouver

Welcome to LingoStar’s blog! On this page, you can find a lot of interesting and useful information about the translation industry. Explore topics on website translation and localization and how successful localization can influence your business to help your company grow and go global.

Language Blog Topics

On this blog, you can also learn about professional translators and interpreters, multilingual search engine optimization (SEO), the importance of socializing and networking and translators’ professional ethics. Quite often we write posts about the languages of the world, other cultures, and their traditions. Not only do translators convert texts from a source language to a target language, but they also help people communicate with each other, help establish international contacts, and are often prominent figures in the social, economic, and political life. Lastly, of course, we want you to have fun, so on our blog, you can find many posts that will entertain you and, hopefully, make you smile!

We hope you enjoy our blog and discover a lot of interesting things! 

Language and Reality – How language is used during times of crisis

The connection between language and reality When we think about the relationship between language and reality, the following question arises: does language shape reality or is it the other way round? There’s a philosophy, called “direction of fit”, according to which both statements are true. This philosophy distinguishes two directions of fit. The first one is that language reflects reality. According to this direction, called the “word-to-world” direction of fit, the words match reality. For example, in the sentence “there is a pen on the table”, these words immediately match the world around us. In this case, language creates statements that can be true or false according to the reality they match. The second direction, the one we are going to explore in this blog post, is when we use language to change reality. This is the “world-to-word” direction of fit because the world is shaped to match the words. In other words, we can say that language is extremely powerful and individuals often use it to manipulate and control. In this blog post, we’ll see how this happened during periods of war and how it is happening today during the COVID-19 pandemic. The language in political speeches during the war and times of crisis: World War I When World War I broke out, politicians gave speeches to persuade citizens to fight for victory. These speeches were not just words. Rather, they were a smart way to brainwash citizens and lead them to think that fighting was the best choice. An example is the speech of Woodrow Wilson, the then United States President. In 1917, the United States declared... read more

Halloween and Religion – How do they relate around the world?

It’s October, Halloween’s month. You can’t say October without thinking of pumpkins, witches, ghosts, and all the other words connected to Halloween. In this blog post, we’d like to explore the relationship between Halloween and religion around the world. So, where does Halloween come from? About 2,000 years ago, the Celts who lived in England and Ireland introduced this festivity. They celebrated it on October 31st. This day marked the end of the summer and the beginning of the cold winter. Halloween was associated with their religion. Indeed, the Celts believed that, on this day, the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. Their return made it easier for the Druids, the Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. However, at that time, this day was known as “Samhain” (a Gaelic word pronounced sow-win). The word “Halloween”, instead, has Christian origins. In fact, it comes from the Scottish word “Hallowe’en” which means “All Hallows’ Eve”, and in Western Churches, on November 1st, it is All Hallows Day. In the 1800s, thanks to Scottish and Irish migrants, this celebration spread to America, where it is still hugely celebrated today. Halloween in Europe As much as Halloween seems to be an international festivity, people around the world have different ways to commemorate their beloved dead. Starting in Ireland and England, Halloween is especially celebrated by kids. They love dressing up in Halloween outfits and knocking on doors asking for “trick- or-treat”. In England, on November 5th, there’s another celebration:  Guy Fawkes Day. This day commemorates the execution of an English traitor, Guy Fawkes, who tried to blow up the Houses... read more

Language Teaching and the Importance of the Role of Translation

Language teaching theories and methods September has come and, in many countries, its arrival ushers in a new scholastic year. In schools, many students are involved in language learning. Indeed, they study one or more languages, other than their native one. Foreign language teaching refers to the teaching of a language that is not native. Firstly, it is important to make a distinction between foreign language and second language, especially if we think about English language teaching. The terms English as Second Language (ESL) and English as Foreign Language (EFL) are not synonymous. Indeed, the difference between ESL and EFL lies in the environment in which it is taught. We refer to ESL when we learn English in a country where it is spoken. In this case, students can practice it outside of the scholastic context. EFL, instead, is taught in countries where it is not spoken outside of the scholastic context, with little chance of practising it. This is true also for the teaching of other languages. However, as English is increasingly becoming an international language and is used as a lingua franca in countries that do not speak it, the distinction between ESL and EFL is so blurred that it is not always easy to differentiate them. Language teaching methodologies Over the years, different theories of language teaching have emerged, resulting in different language teaching methodologies. We can think of the innatist theory, according to which children have an innate ability to discover language rules. This would explain why we are able to learn complex grammar rules. If we shift to the behaviourist theory, instead, we discover... read more

Climate Change in Africa: How Translation and Ecolinguistics Are Helping

Africa is the world’s hottest and second largest continent on Earth. Made up of 54 countries, there are approximately 1,000-2,000 different languages spoken across the continent. Africa has barely contributed towards climate change and yet it is one of the hardest hit by its effects. The impact of climate change in Africa Africa has experienced significant increases in temperatures and dramatic decreases in precipitation. Tropical storms have also been more frequent and more intense, as well as dust storms in June and July. Higher temperatures, drought, changing rainfall patterns; all these climate changes are already a reality and will only worsen if we don’t take action urgently. How translation is helping fight against climate change The main reason for climate change is the burning of fossil fuels. Other reasons are deforestation and farming. Indeed, all are causing the planet to heat up. But global warming is only one aspect of climate change. Human activities are directly responsible for climate change and people therefore play a pivotal role in its reversal. The population of Africa is currently 1,374,627,468. In some countries of Africa, the lack of adequate education and limited access to knowledge pose real widespread problems. Consequently, most people in Africa are not aware of environmental issues. In addition, in some of its countries, people don’t speak English or languages other than their own native language. Therefore, if a person can’t speak a certain language or isn’t aware of environmental issues, how could they understand the meaning of global warming or do anything against climate change? One of the best ways to help people in Africa address climate change... read more

Chinese to English Translations of Ancient Chinese Poetry

Invitation to Classical Chinese Poetry has been one of the most ancient and significant genres of literature all over the world. One of the reasons is its ability to express millions of delicate feelings. Chinese poetry is written in a way that enables readers to enjoy the beauty of the language. There have been many attempts to translate poems from Classical Chinese to English. As a result, these poems have become more popular around the world. In this blog post, we focus on Chinese poetry and try to explore its depth through a poem from a prominent Chinese poet so read on! What is Chinese poetry and why is it so attractive? With its long history, China has one of the richest cultural backgrounds in the world. Some of the very first elements of their cultural heritage appeared in the form of poems. Those poems used Classical Chinese (also known as Literary Chinese). They are far different from any modern form of the Chinese language we know today. So why haven’t they all been forgotten by now? In fact, many people still love and study these poems today. It is due to the sophisticated and beautiful way in which they express ideas and provide profound insights into life and beauty. Classical Chinese to English Although translating Chinese ancient poetry is an extremely challenging task, there have been many attempts to translate poems from Classical Chinese to English. Thanks to those contributions, we now have access to the world of old Chinese poetry. We’ve picked one of the highly appreciated poems translated from Classical Chinese to English so that you... read more

Literary Series and Their Influence on Language and Culture

Some literary series enjoy more success than others… We assume you all know Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, The Lord of the Rings, or Narnia? In this blog post, we focus on two of these literary series to dig deeper into how much success they’ve had and how they’ve influenced us all. The Worldwide Success of Literary Series Harry Potter Translations Some literary series have seen worldwide success. Even if you’ve never watched their film adaptations, you may have heard a lot about them! We all know Harry Potter, A Song of Ice and Fire aka Game of Thrones, The Lord of the Rings, and The Chronicles of Narnia. These are indeed four of the most renowned ones. But do you really know how they became so successful? Their worldwide success is due, without a doubt, to their numerous translations! Without the translated versions, they would have probably become successful in their original language and country but not worldwide. Do you know how many translations there are for each famous book series? Let’s focus on Harry Potter, probably the best example here. J. K. Rowling, a British author, wrote the Harry Potter fantasy series. She published her seven novels between 1997 and 2007. The books became immensely popular. They’ve received endless positive reviews and have met commercial success worldwide since the release of the first novel. As at February 2018, the book series has won multiple awards and sold more than 500 million copies worldwide. It’s the best-selling book series in history and it was translated into 80 languages! The first volume was even translated into Latin and Ancient... read more

The Bengali Language and the History of its Evolution

Some data about the Bengali language The Bengali language, also called Bangla, is the official and national language of Bangladesh, but not the only one. “Bangla” is written বাংলা in the Bengali script. This writing system (brahmic script) is the 6th most widely used one in the world. The original inhabitants of the Bengal region of Southwest Asia are the Bengalis. 98 % of Bangladeshi people speak Bengali as their first language. It is also one of the official languages of India. Indeed, 7.1 % of Indians speak it. It is the most widely spoken of the 22 languages of India, after Hindi. Other communities speak it, for example in Pakistan, in the UK or in the USA. In a nutshell, it is the 5th most spoken language by native speakers in the world. It is also the 7th most spoken language by the total number of speakers. There are around 267 million speakers, of which 230 million are native. The evolution of the Bengali language The Bengali language can be traced back to 3500 B.C. to the Indo-European language family. Many assume that it was born from Sanskrit. But scholars and linguists believe that it derives from Indo-Aryan languages like Magadhi Prakrit and Pali. Modern Bengali uses words taken from Turkish, Portuguese, Persian or English, for example. We can divide the evolution of the Bengali language into three stages: Old Bengali, Middle Bengali and Modern Bengali. Old Bengali dates back to around 650 A.D. when priests and scholars widely used Sanskrit in literary works in Bengal. However, this is a bit of a dark area in the history... read more

English Language Etymology from a French Perspective

English is the product of many cultures and despite being of Germanic origin, an important part of English language etymology finds its source in the French language. In Twenty Years After – the sequel to The Three Musketeers by French novelist Alexandre Dumas – D’Artagnan said “English is little more than badly pronounced French”. Several years later, George Clémenceau (early 20th century French PM) said the same. Is there any truth in their claim? To find out, we need to go back in time and look at English language etymology in its historical context. But first, here are a few useful definitions. English Language Etymology: Definitions Cognates Cognates are words that share a common ancestry. True cognates might not be instantly recognizable; they only share the same etymology. But they can also have the same spelling and meaning, or they can be loanwords or calques. They can be close cognates (same meaning but slight variation in spelling) and even false cognates (or “false friends” – same spelling but different meaning). For example: True cognates: to attest < attester, from Latin ad-testari, curfew < couvre-feu, from the Old French cuevrefeu (used in the Middle Ages when fires had to be covered and people had to be home and off the streets by a certain time), coward < couard, Old French.Close cognates: analytique > analytical, créatif > creative, banque > bank.False friends: magasin (FR) = shop (EN) not magazine (publication), douche (FR) = shower (EN) not douche (EN) (medical term or type of person), bras (FR) = arm (EN) not bra (EN) (undergarment). Read more about the etymology of words between... read more

Are women of colour in France leading the fight against racism?

The problems women of colour face in France… France is a country rich in cultural diversity, partly shaped by its immigration. In this article, we shine the spotlight on women of colour in France, the problems they face and their struggle. It will allow you to understand why, increasingly, women of colour are leading the fight against racism in France. Women of colour in France, and around the globe, are victims of both sexism and racism. In society, on social media, at work… Being different is stigmatized when it should be seen as something positive… A study published by France Stratégie (an institution planning the social, economic, environmental and cultural development of France) has shown that, in France, men have more working opportunities than women. And among all these men, Caucasian men have more opportunities than the others. So what about women of colour? Mentalities might be evolving but, unfortunately, racial and gender discrimination in the world of work is still deeply rooted. An example of discrimination against women of colour at work The French website Abenafrica contains numerous stories testifying to this sad reality. A 23-year-old woman from Martinique – a French overseas territory – explained that she had a team meeting at work. She entered the room and was about to close the door. Her boss said “Oh no, please, don’t close the door! It’s really hot today, just like in your country!” Her name is Émilie. She was born in Paris. France IS her home country. This is just one of the many examples witnessing the discrimination women and people of colour face every day. And... read more

LingoStar Language Services Projects – Versatile Translations

At LingoStar, we aim to broaden our comprehension of the world by using our knowledge of languages and cultures. We believe that translation is the key to understanding each other better and thus, to bring people from all around the world closer together. This is why we offer a wide range of services in a multitude of languages. We could go on and on about what kind of services we provide and why we are the right company for your translation needs, but we’ll let our Lingostar Language Services Projects speak for themselves. Minority and extinct languages we have worked with Inuktitut Translation Did you know that Inuktitut is one of the minority languages in Canada? It is one of the main Inuit languages and is spoken by 39,475 natives. “In Canada, the word Inuktitut is routinely used to refer to all Canadian variants of the Inuit traditional language, and it is under that name that it is recognised as one of the official languages of Nunavut and the Northwest.” “Inuktitut comes from inuk “person” and -titut “like” or “in the manner of”. Many Inuit live in the northern regions of Canada, for the most part, along the Arctic coast. Inuit Nunangat in Inuktitut means “lands, waters, and ices of the [Inuit] people”. Inuit Nunangat is composed of the Northwest Territories and Yukon (Inuvialuit), Nunavut, Northern Quebec (Nunavik), and the northeastern coast of Newfoundland and Labrador (Nunatsiavut). Latin Translation In regards to other rarely used languages, we also translate into Latin. Even though Latin is an extinct language, the film industry manages to bring it back to life for our greatest entertainment! Why would... read more

Lunar New Year of the Ox – Welcome!

Who celebrates the Lunar New Year? China and other Asian countries celebrate the Lunar New Year, also referred to as Chinese Chunjie, Korean Solnal, Vietnamese Tet, Tibetan Losar, or more commonly as the Spring Festival. In 2021, we welcome the Lunar New Year of the Ox! The origins of the Lunar New Year festival take place thousands of years ago with the legend of the Nian. Nian was a terrible monster that devoured human flesh on New Year’s Day. The stories explain that the beast was afraid of loud noises, fire and of the colour red. Consequently, during the celebration, fireworks are lit, red lanterns are hung and a lion made out of several people in costumes walks the streets.  When does it take place? The festivities begin with the first new moon of the lunar calendar and end 15 days later, on the first full moon. The dates of the holiday vary from one year to the other as they follow the cycles of the moon. The holiday usually takes place between the 21st January and the 20th February of the Gregorian Calendar. In addition, a few days before the New Year, the sweeping of the ground starts: people fully clean their houses in the hope of getting rid of all the lingering bad vibes. It is customary for people celebrating Chinese New Year to give each other small red envelopes containing money. Furthermore, the Lantern Festival takes place on the last day of the Lunar New Year’s celebrations. If you are lucky enough to be in a place that celebrates it, you will find yourself amazed and... read more

Canadian English: A Brief History

A Word on Localization Over the past year, we’ve spoken a lot about the importance of localization. The 14 guides we published in fall 2020 highlight why localizing your website content matters. They explain what to look out for in order to localize your website easily to establish trust and successfully engage with your target audience. Moreover, in one of our social media posts in December 2020, we touched on the differences between Canadian, American and British English. Translations into Canadian English and Canadian French make up the core of our business. As part of our commitment to continuous professional development, we decided to delve deeper into how Canadian English was formed to gain a better understanding of its history. Our findings were so enriching that we had to share them with you! Canadian English: A Rich Heritage The creation of Canada as we know it today is the product of several phases of colonisation. Indigenous people had already been living on the land for thousands of years. In the 10th century, Scandinavian expeditions tried in vain to establish sustainable settlements. It’s not until the 15th and 16th centuries that the French and the English revived colonisation interest. Over the next 350 years, each respective side discovered and won over different parts of Canada through several wars. We’ve produced this handy infographic summarising the key events over this period. 350 Years of Canadian English Formation at a Glance From then on, apart from the important number of French-Canadians in Quebec and its surrounding area, the population was almost entirely British. Indeed, the enormous immigration wave that took place in... read more

Explore LingoStar’s Selection of Multilingual Translation Projects

Translation is all around us thanks to client-driven multilingual translation projects At LingoStar, we love the variety of multilingual translation projects we work on. Translation is all around us, even if we don’t realize it. Thanks to advanced technologies, companies have many more opportunities to make their products and services available online. Therefore, many decide to localize and offer their products to a significantly larger number of speakers of various foreign languages, rather than resorting to English speakers only. Now more than ever before, people worldwide are using online tools to purchase and download products. Naturally, they want to do so in their native language. Interestingly, this presents an opportunity for many small, medium and freelance businesses to share their expertise and services as well. So, are you ready to localize your services and products into foreign languages and expand your online business? If so, find out how to localize your website in our ebook. A Beginner’s Guide to Multilingual Website Translation Multilingual Translations Help You Expand Internationally Many of our Canadian clients realize the potential for global expansion and entrust us with multilingual translation projects on a weekly basis. So let’s have our projects speak for themselves. We’ve selected a few projects to show you the variety of multilingual projects we carry out on behalf of our clients. We regularly complete translations for corporate documents, operating manuals, marketing materials, as well as multilingual phone recordings, professional voice-overs and so much more. Have a look at what we’ve been up to! If you need our help, we’ll be happy to issue a free translation quote here >>.Also, check out... read more

Translation Blog and News

LingoStar has been a language services provider in Canada, the USA, and Europe for more than a decade. We are proud to say that we cooperate with professional translators, interpreters, and other language specialists worldwide and work with over 100 language pairs. If you are looking for a reliable translation company, contact LingoStar! We are always ready to help you with your projects and documentation. Get a free quote online.