Sometimes, as technical translators, we’re considered to be less-gifted than our colleagues translating literature and that’s a shame because manuals, reports, clinical trials and brochures are full-fledged books, with their characters, actions and paradigmatic structure.
I like reading manuals. When I need to fix something, or need to do something I’ve never done before, I look for instructions. Reading well-translated, accurate manuals is half the battle. Watching a tutorial with good subtitles is a fast, efficient way of learning things.
Terminology compliance, consistency, a clear phrasing are essential features to deliver a good-quality translation: reference materials, shared query files and a constant feedback from the client are incredibly useful to understand the text first-hand and thus to make it clear and understandable for our audience.