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Versions of Chinese

Currently, there are two main versions of Chinese used around the world - Simplified Chinese (CHS) and Traditional Chinese (CHT). The geographical areas that each of the versions covers are as follows:

Simplified: China and Singapore
Traditional: Taiwan, Hong Kong and overseas Chinese communities

In the computer realm, Simplified Chinese uses GB2312 encoding and Traditional Chinese uses the so-called Big5 encoding. They have different Windows, Mac OS's and application software. Technical terminology and the way people speak about them are also quite different. Translation departments of large corporations, therefore, treat the two versions as two different languages and typically have different teams of people handling each of them.

Mandarin or Cantonese
Mandarin or Cantonese is a dialect of the Chinese language, not a written language and should not be used when requesting written translation, though it is quite correct to use them if you are looking for an interpreter. When these terms are used to denote a written language, however, they can easily cause confusion or misunderstanding. You also run the risk of getting the wrong version. For example, Mandarin is spoken both in China and Taiwan, and increasingly in Hong Kong. Many people in the US Chinese community also speak Mandarin. When a client from Taiwan requests Mandarin translation, s/he is actually asking for traditional Chinese. If a project manager from a US agency asks for Mandarin translation to be used in Mainland China, what s/he wants is Simplified Chinese. Therefore, the best way is to verify the target region, then offer the correct version from the above list and ask the client to confirm. This way, you will never end up with a wrong version.





客户评荐

一个汉译英项目
我想您也许有兴趣知道,您的译文已经在我公司经过编辑和文字处理交给客户了。这是个明显很难的项目,您翻译得这么好,我们的编辑(母语英语)和译审(母语中文)两人都向您表示祝贺。真诚的,帕特里夏
这是一篇中医百科全书中关于生姜的文章,是对生姜作为中药及其现代生物医学研究成果的详细描述,其中包括从唐朝以来著名中医对生姜的论述,由于涉及到医学古文和生物医学最新研究的内容,几位母语为英语的美国翻译都觉得太难而推辞了,其中有一位接了下来,但是翻译了8000多字后,由于做不下去而不做了。我在时间很紧的情况下接受了这一项目,按时将高质量的译文交给了客户,上面的话是客户项目经理发给我的电子邮件。

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