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The secrets of Chapter 19

So I get this email today from a translation agency in the UK, desperately searching for translators to work on a “big project” that needs to be completed by next week, Icelandic to English. They’re tight-lipped about what it is [until you agree to sign a contractor agreement] — but it concerned a certain “Chapter 19” and was, oh, many thousands of words, and was kind of, like, financial and legal.

This was actually the second notification I got about this job — I was contacted last week via another channel, at which time the pressure was on because it had to be completed THIS week.

Chapter 19 of the Black Report: “Measures and Responses of Icelandic Authorities in 2007-2008 Due to Risk of Financial Breakdown.”

Somebody over there in the UK wants that puppy translated realfast.

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  • Tom Harper April 28, 2010, 11:38 pm

    Very very interesting. I wonder if it’s Labour or the Tories? =p

  • kevin oconnor,waterford ireland April 29, 2010, 12:26 am

    Must be in hot demand Alda for top secret translation job, actually when you think about it you must be a rare person in Iceland being able to flip between english and Icelandic in a colloquial sense, How many Icelanders that can speak good english, know it to the native level that you do, I doubt very few native englishers , Yankees, Canadians, Brits, Irish etc know the slightest scrap of Icelandic, for instance as has been shown we can not get the name of one volcano right.!!

  • Michael Schulz April 29, 2010, 8:19 am

    Interesting. Why don’t you publish translations also on your web site? Translations beyond the ones accessible on the sic.althingi site (which contains only chapters 2, 18 and 21 as well as annexes 3 plus 8). At least I would be very interested to – eventually – read the complete report.
    Cheers, M.

  • alda April 29, 2010, 11:28 am

    Why don’t you publish translations also on your web site?

    If I thought I could sell enough to make it worth my while, I might consider it. But it is a HUGE project and if I were to attempt it on my own I am pretty sure it wouldn’t be.

  • PeterRRRRRR April 29, 2010, 12:05 pm

    As us engineers like to say: “Good, Fast, Cheap — Pick Two.” If they want a good translation and done quickly, they will certainly have to pay more. So should we expect a little less posting here for the next few days?

  • alda April 29, 2010, 12:24 pm

    Peter – if there’s less posting, it won’t be because of this job but because I have plenty on my plate as it is. 🙂

  • Tom Harper April 29, 2010, 12:28 pm

    Both a good thing and a bother, I’m sure, Alda =)

    I do wonder, though, if we will ever see this entire report translated into English. It would be a massive undertaking, and other than satisfying the curiosity of those like us (who are, relatively speaking, few), what would be the advantage of this over summarising or reading analyses? I am sure people can come up with a few, but as time passes the value of such a monstrously expensive project continues to drop.

    Perhaps I (and others who want to know) will just have to study Icelandic finance vocab and have a go 😉

  • Peter - London April 30, 2010, 8:26 am

    “Icelandic Translators Enjoy Their Moment in the Sun
    Masters of the Unpronounceable Shine;

    No Word for CDO? Make It Up”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704464704575208050941674586.html?mod=WSJEUROPE_hps_MIDDLETopStories