Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Radio Translation

A group of Indian innovators has devised a cheap and user-friendly technological solution to the communication problems posed by the diversity of languages in the country and abroad.

The new technology works on the same principle as as FM radio. So, for example, at a conference where English speakers are addressing a Hindi-speaking audience, listeners can be provided with a pocket-sized radio set and headphones which will trasmit simultaneous translations of the speeches by an interpreter.

Read more: Radio Translation
Posted by Neil Payne at 9:41 AM
Categories: Translation News

Chinese Do not speak manadarin

China's official language may be Mandarin, but according to recent research close to 50 percent of the country's population does not speak it.

The survey, carried out over a period of six years and reported by Singapore's The Strait Times, found that Mandarin or Putong-Hua, is one of the least known of Chinese languages despite efforts by the Communist government to promote it.

Read more: Mandarin
Posted by Neil Payne at 9:37 AM
Categories: Language Learning News

Saudi Arabia

To mark the beginning of Hajj, we have decided to provide some information on Saudi Arabia today for our readers.

For cross cultural information on business practices, etiquette and protocol please visit Executive Planet or Kwintessential's Saudi Arabia Profile.

For more general information, please visit the CIA Factbook, The Saudi Ministry of Culture and Information or The Lonely Planet travel guide.

Hajj begins

The annual pilgrimage for Muslims, the Hajj, begins today. Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, will be welcoming over 2 million pilgrims for the 3 day event ending on Friday.

All able bodied Muslims, who are able to afford the trip and expected to perform the Hajj at least once in their lifetime. The Hajj involves rites such as visiting and circumbulating the Ka'aba in Makkah, spending a day on the plains of Arafat and the shaving of the hair (symbolising purification) at the end of the pilgrimage. Hajj ends with Eid al-Adha (the Festival of Sacrifice).

Learn more about Hajj
Posted by Neil Payne at 9:26 AM
Categories: Cultural Diversity

Cultural Diversity Seminar

The Cultural Diversity seminar promoted on this news site on Jan 12th in Bowling Green, Kentucky is reported to have been a success.

The main message speaker, Philippe Deprez, had for the audience was that the secret to running a successful international business is learning all there is to know about the customs and language in each new country into which a business expands.

Deprez’s lecture mainly focused on the five-step approach to visiting a new country. The first step is to develop a genuine interest in learning about the country and its language.

Read more: Cultural Diversity Seminar
Posted by Neil Payne at 9:14 AM
Categories: Cross Cultural News

Hajji Sacked

A worker has won the first victory in a case of religious discrimination under new legislation that came into effect in December 2003.

Mohammed Sajwal Khan, who was sacked after he took extended leave to make a once-in-a-lifetime religious pilgrimage to Mecca. Khan had worked for NIC Hygiene as a bus cleaner for more than seven years when he decided to make the pilgrimage, and applied to use all his annual leave allowance.

Khan was told by his manager to assume the leave was granted. However on his return to the UK from the six-week trip, Khan was suspended without pay and later sacked.

Read more: Hajji Sacked

Canadian Winters

In this article, Thelma O'Connor, manager of Canada Wise, an information service for newcomers to the Canada, provides some insight into the Canadian Winter.

As well as describing some bleak weather conditions, she also provides tips to combat the snow and advises on some fun activities for the winter.

Read more: Canadian Winters
Posted by Neil Payne at 8:57 AM
Categories: Expatriate


Web Globalization Best Practices
February 9th 2005

Transware and John Yunker of ByteLevel Research will be running this webinar. John Yunker is one of the world's foremost experts in his field. He is the author of the widely acclaimed book Beyond Borders: Web Globalization Strategies and is president of Byte Level Research, whose clients include John Deere, Wal-Mart and Intel.

Find out more: Webinar

word of the day: voluble

voluble \VOL-yuh-buhl\, adjective:
1. Characterized by a ready flow of speech.
2. Easily rolling or turning; rotating.
3. (Botany) Having the power or habit of turning or twining.

Rostow was voluble, exuberant and full of good and sometimes foolish ideas. --Kai Bird, The Color of Truth

Two glasses of wine made him voluble and three made him bellicose, sentimental and sometimes slurred. --"How Nixon turned into Tricky Dicky," Daily Telegraph, March 9, 1999

Provided by
Posted by Neil Payne at 8:46 AM
Categories: Expand Your Vocabulary

Monday, January 17, 2005

Free English Dictionary Search Tool

The English dictionary website has been officially launched. Special features include advanced search functionality not available on other dictionary websites, over 320,000 references, a simple no-frills interface and extremely fast searching.

Read more: Free English Dictionary Search Tool

translation headaches at European Union

The enlargement of the European Union from 15 to 25 member-states with nine new languages has created a kind of linguistic big bang in Brussels, with new headaches for intepreters.

"Integrating nine new official languages at one go when the newcomers joined last May was an unprecedented situation for the Commission," said a member of the EU's executive organ.

Read more: European Union
Posted by Neil Payne at 10:42 AM
Categories: Translation News

RLN Southwest educating local firms

Two academics from Plymouth University have been appointed to teach firms in Devon and Cornwall about the importance of foreign languages.

Prof David Head and Dr Jaquie Hope, of the Plymouth Business School, will run the Regional Language Network (RLN) South West, which aims to help businesses boost international trade, in the two counties.

The RLN South West was set up after a survey found that 20% of companies in the region which traded abroad had lost business because of a language or cultural barrier.

Expat Relocation and Culture Shock

Culture shock is a phenomenon that impacts many people relocating for work abroad. The changes and contrasts in both the simple things like language, food, weather and TV, coupled with differences in behaviour, world view or religion can often have negative side effects.

Recognising and preparing for culture shock can however offer some help in terms of lessening its negative impact. In this article, Expatriate Relocation and Culture Shock, the different stages of culture shock are examined and basic advice given on how best to prepare for the international move.

AMA urges cultural awareness training

The Australian Medical Association (AMA) says doctors and nurses should undertake cultural awareness training before going to remote areas of the Northern Territory to work.

The AMA's Territory president David Meadows says violence against health professionals is a problem particularly in the remote communities. He says GPs need to have skills to negotiate with patients when they are frustrated and upset. "If you go to a community environment, they need to be adequately immersed in the cultural aspects, so they understand what certain displays of aggression and certain ways that people behave mean and not to be taken out of context," he said.

Read more: AMA urges cultural awareness training
Posted by Neil Payne at 10:29 AM
Categories: Cross Cultural News

Martin Luther King Day

Today is Martin Luther King Day in the USA. It was King that famously stated that, "Men hate each other because they fear each other, and they fear each other because they don't know each other..."

Although King's struggle has brought about changes in the condition of black Americans, promoting cultural and racial equality is still one of the US's major challenges.

Posted by Neil Payne at 10:25 AM
Categories: Cultural Diversity

Global diversity study

A 30 year Global diversity study unveiled the impact that diversity has on productivity and has consluded that the employment needs and expectations of employees are the same around the world.

Sirota Consulting examined the attitudes of more than three million employees worldwide and found employment needs and expectations can best be summarised in three categories.

Read more: Global diversity study
Posted by Neil Payne at 10:14 AM
Categories: Human Resources News

Cross Cultural Etiquette

It may be konnichiwa in Japan, Guten Tag in Germany and Merhaba in Turkey -- saying hello is easy -- but understanding cultural nuances for international business is far more challenging.

In this CNN interview, Kwintessential's MD, Neil Payne, answers questions about the cross cultural differences in business practices around the world.

Read the interview: Cross Cultural Etiquette

EBay in China

The US internet auction site, eBay, says it will focus on developing a customer base in China rather than simply expecting to reap sjort term profits from the country.

"China is such a huge market, so we should spare no efforts to cultivate the market, rather than only pursuing profits," said James Zheng, chief operating officer of eBay Eachnet, the Chinese arm of the giant US firm.

Speaking in Beijing, Zheng said the number of eBay Eachnet's registered users will reach 10 million this week.

Read more: EBay in China

word of the day: apogee

apogee \AP-uh-jee\, noun:
1. The point in the orbit of the moon or of an artificial satellite that is at the greatest distance from the center of the earth.
2. The farthest or highest point; culmination.

But in retrospect, this period would prove to be the apogee of O'Sullivan's career, although he always felt bigger and better things were on his way. --Edward L. Widmer, Young America.

How can we suppose that science has reached its apogee in the twentieth century? --John Maddox, What Remains To Be Discovered.

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Posted by Neil Payne at 9:54 AM
Categories: Expand Your Vocabulary

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