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Profile & Philosophy

Translation is as much art as it is science--perhaps more of the former than the latter.

As an art form, translation requires a passion for language, or, rather, at least two languages. This passion must result in the desire to understand the intricacies and nuances of those languages and to demonstrate extraordinary mastery in their use.

A professional translator must also have an interest in a broad range of subjects and technology and have the determination to stay current in many fields, be it information technology, law, medicine, finance, or any of countless specialties. Should he or she be a proven subject matter expert? Clearly, an advanced degree in engineering or extensive work experience as a psychologist will give translators specializing in those very fields an obvious edge over their peers—colleagues with a more general understanding, who need to spend significant time researching the details of a chemical patent or of an article on early childhood development to be published in a psychology journal. But are these experts also superior translators? Some are, absolutely. But by and large, based on my twenty plus years experience as a technical translator and editor, they are not.

This is my professional credo: a trained linguist with an interest in a diverse number of technical and non-technical subjects should be able to create polished, smooth, publishable translations in a wide variety of fields. A subject matter expert to whom language competency is a secondary skill is more limited. I call this the generalist's edge.

I am first and foremost a linguist. My background is in the languages I use on a daily basis in my chosen profession. I translate from my second language—English—into my first—German. That is all I do, and I do it very well. I have learned a lot about areas I find interesting, from software localization and mining technology to advertising and business policies, and I don't accept projects in areas I don't know enough about or don't have time to research.

When you entrust GP Translations with your English to German translation project, you can be assured that I will personally execute your translation and have it reviewed by a fellow linguist with equal or better qualifications. I will communicate all issues and concerns to you and coordinate with you in order to create a document, a web site or an advertisement that looks and feels as though it was originally written in German. In other words, it won't read like a translation. To me, that's a matter of professional pride and honor.

Gerhard Preisser
President and CEO
GP Translations, Inc.

Associate member of the American Translators Association (ATA)

Member of the Northern California Translators Association (NCTA)


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