Trick or translation? With Halloween lurking around every corner, at Okodia Translation Services we have brought out our most revealing side to tell you about the spookiest translations of all time. Yes, the type of translation you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. We will share them with you below.

Who is Esteban Trabajos?

The founder of Apple passed away a number of years ago. If he were still here, he would probably not be very amused about what we are about to tell. This is what happens when you use machine translation. Steve Jobs becomes Esteban Trabajos. There are many machine translation errors that show us why it’s always best to use a translation agency. That’s the best way to avoid problems. Try it for yourself. Write the words Steve Jobs into Google in lower case and see what happens!

False friends are the worst

There is nothing worse in the world of translation than being fooled by a friendly face. We are talking about false friends, which is the term used for words that seem to mean one thing when in reality they mean quite another. An easy example: ‘Carpet” in English. If you expected it to be the same as “Carpeta” in Spanish, which means “folder”, you are in for a surprise.

The trauma of idioms

The translation of idioms can be a real headache unless a professional is used. There are very famous examples involving signs in public buildings. One of the best known was in a shopping centre where machine translation was used to translate certain messages into Spanish and English. One of them went like this: “Hold your child’s hand” with the unfortunate Spanish translation which meant “Have a child’s hand”. Imagine how parents would feel on reading that sign. It doesn’t bear thinking about!

Good translations are the best remedy

While technology is advancing by leaps and bounds, we should never forget that it is still technology. A machine will never understand double meanings, it will only translate words literally. That’s why if you want to give the best impression of yourself or your company, you should use specialised professional translators. Whether they are medical translators, certified translators or specialists in other areas, you will achieve your goals with their help. Shall we get started?

Rocío González

Author Rocío González

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