Friday, October 19, 2012

Note from the Division Administrator, Karen Tkaczyk

Many of us are gearing up for the ATA Annual Conference next week. San Diego here we come! 

We will start by mingling during the Opening Reception and at the S&TD table Division Open house on Wednesday to reconnect with our friends and colleagues. Let’s see if can match the fun we had with the marble run last year. In spite of the hectic atmosphere, we should all manage to meet a few old friends and some new ones there and perhaps plan calmer meals and chats for later in the week!

The Leadership Council hopes that you are pleased with the science and technology related sessions available. Thank you so much to all the division members who offered to share their knowledge with the rest of us. We have a great range of subjects covered this year, many of which we have not heard about in recent years. One change has been made to the S&TD sessions since we all received the preliminary program: our Distinguished Speaker from Italy had to cancel her trip. She received a promotion that meant she could not leave her university during October, so we have no sustainable architecture sessions. Instead, we have an extra session by Salvador Virgen called "Instrumental Chemistry: Understanding the Lingo and Underlying Technology." Thanks Salvador! The current list of S&TD sessions is here:

On Thursday night, we have the division dinner. As of writing, about 25 of us will gather at “Candelas” in the Gaslamp district to enjoy each other’s’ company and an intriguing Mexican-French menu. We will post photos on the website after the fact.

We will conduct our very brief official business on Saturday. One item is to approve the members of next year's Nominating Committee for the division. We have had two volunteers already, Abigail Dahlberg and Salvador Virgen. We thank you. In theory, we should have three people on that committee: that way if they disagree there will be no tie. Would anyone like to join Abigail and Salvador? Those present at the Annual Meeting in San Diego will form the committee by acclamation, then next spring the committee will start to find an administrator and assistant administrator for the 2013-2015 term. If you are interested or have any questions about what it would involve, please let me (Karen Tkaczyk) know before that meeting on Saturday 27.

Keep an eye on usual venues for updates: the Yahoo! Group, the Facebook group, tweeting @ATASciTech, and the LinkedIn group. For those of you not going to San Diego, I recommend following the Twitter hashtags #ATA53 and #TIFuture. If you don’t have a Twitter account you can still follow the conference’s Twitter feed at As we move into November, look out for blog posts reviewing the sessions and social events here.

Hope to see you next week, or hear from you soon. Let’s keep networking!

Photo from

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Science & Technology Session Schedule for the ATA 53rd Annual Conference, San Diego CA, October 2012

Science & Technology
Click on the speaker name to view bio.
Translating for the Design and Construction Professions in Israel
Don Jacobson
(Thursday, 11:00am-12:00pm; All Levels; Presented in: English)

Israel has recently undergone far-reaching changes in large-scale infrastructure and commercial construction projects. Foreign investment and professional partnering play a growing role in the Israeli economy, while Israeli developers and engineering firms increase their activities abroad. This activity has brought with it the need for high-quality technical translation in order to facilitate communication among partners, enable new players to enter the economy, and improve local technical capacity in fields previously absent in Israel. This session will cover the wide range of activities covered by this field of translation and the special challenges translators face.
An Introduction to Aviation and Air Travel
Nicholas Hartmann
(Friday, 10:00am-11:00am; All Levels; Presented in: English)

This extensively illustrated session will offer an overview of aviation and aeronautics. After an introduction to the Earth's atmosphere and the fundamentals of powered flight, the speaker will discuss contemporary commercial aircraft and their engines, as well as the physical and organizational infrastructure of the international air travel system. The objective is to give participants a better understanding of how the system works and explain some of what the observant traveler might see at an airport or from an airplane window.

DNA Translation: It's All in the Genes
Leo van Zanten
(Friday, 11:30am-12:30pm; All Levels; Presented in: English)

This session will provide insight on something we all share, DNA. It will cover various aspects of genetics, including mutations, breeding, biotechnology, gene therapy, and gene translation. The different applications of DNA technology in plants and animals and recent advances will also be discussed. Some resources will be provided.

Basic Concepts of Pharmacology in Drug Development
Bob Lyon
(Friday, 2:00pm-3:15pm; Beginner; Presented in: English)

This session will introduce the basic pharmacological concepts of drug action, including receptors and receptor interaction, receptor occupancy and drug action, agonists and antagonists, and the relationship between drug efficacy and potency. Illustrative examples will be provided for each concept as well as how the aspects of drug behavior are measured or assessed in the laboratory or clinical settings.

Drugs of Abuse: A Pharmacological Perspective
Bob Lyon
(Friday, 3:45pm-5:00pm; Beginner; Presented in: English)

This session will provide a pharmacological perspective on drugs of abuse (including nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol). Abused drugs actually have a wide range of different pharmacological actions and mechanisms. Included in this session will be an extensive overview of how different drug types are regulated or scheduled based upon their potential for abuse. This session will help make the science of pharmacology real and tangible even to the non-specialist.

From the Catwalk to CAT Tools: Translating for the Fashion and Garment Industry
Erin M. Lyons
(Saturday, 8:30am-9:30am; All Levels; Presented in: English)

Was your shirt made in the U.S.? The textile and garment industries are among the most globalized industries and account for the largest source of worldwide employment. Apart from the glitz and the glam, these industries are highly technical and translation plays an integral role in linking global stakeholders, from garment design to production to consumer-facing brand positioning. This session will address resources for deciphering and translating technical production terminology for specific audiences, the importance of consistent label-specific language in a highly competitive landscape, and how to "transcreate" content for international retailing and marketing.

Let's Talk Trash!
Abigail L. Dahlberg
(Saturday, 10:00am-11:00am; All Levels; Presented in: English)

As the world starts to run short on raw material and energy costs spiral higher, industry and policymakers are looking increasingly at waste to bridge the gap. This session will touch upon all of the major waste management technologies, from landfills to incineration and mechanical-biological treatment to composting and recycling. It will also cover some gray areas. When does a product become a waste, and when does a recycled waste become a secondary raw material? This session will also draw comparisons between the approaches taken in the U.S., Europe, and a developing country.

The "God Particle," Dark Matter, Black Holes, and All That
Carola F. Berger
(Saturday, 11:30am-12:30pm; All Levels; Presented in: English)

The Large Hadron Collider at the European Laboratory for Particle Physics (CERN) is not only the world's largest machine (and fridge), but also home of the world's largest international scientific collaborations, with scientists from over 100 different nations. As such, the underlying science may be of interest to linguists. The speaker will provide a basic overview on the search for the Higgs (also known as the "God particle"), dark matter, and all the other related buzzwords. Participants will also receive an update on the latest experimental results. Although this session is intended for a non-expert audience, it should be interesting to physics-experts as well.

Science and Technology Division Annual Meeting
Karen M. Tkaczyk
(Saturday, 2:00pm-2:15pm; All Levels; Presented in: English)

We will review the division's activities and discuss future plans. All division members are encouraged to attend, and nonmembers are invited to come learn more about the division.

Caution: Graphic Images/Explicit Views
Stephanie D. Strobel and Joao Roque Dias
(Saturday, 2:15pm-3:15pm; Intermediate; Presented in: English)

Sections? Scales? Views? Exploded Views? Elevations? Plans? First and third angle projections? Do you know what these terms mean? Let's examine interpreting the hieroglyphics of technical drawings. This session will introduce translators to technical drawings that can provide a Rosetta Stone for a technical translation. We will look at photos of actual equipment and their corresponding representation in drawings. Symbols, views, and terminology within a technical drawing will be explained. Properly reading a technical drawing can boost and improve your translation work.

Tequila: Origins, Production, and Quality Control Analysis
Salvador R. Virgen and Mario Aguilar-Briano
(Saturday, 3:45pm-5:00pm; All Levels; Presented in: English)

Tequila is one of the drinks known as spirits, a group that includes cognac, whisky, and vodka. This session will describe the origins, the production steps of tequila, and the laboratory techniques used to assure it meets the statutory specifications. This session is geared to translators who want to know about tequila production or analytical chemistry. While it will focus on tequila, much of the material can be applied directly to other spirits or the laboratory methods for other products.

Instrumental Chemistry: Understanding the Lingo and Underlying Technology
Salvador R. Virgen
(Thursday, 3:45pm-5:00pm; Intermediate; Presented in: English)

In many cases, the sciences borrow words from other fields or everyday language and use them with new meanings. As a result, the lingo spoken by practitioners is often unfathomable or misleading to laypeople. This session will focus on the specialized terms used in chromatography and spectroscopy, including a general description of the technology, its uses, and limitations. Special attention will be given to understanding analytical procedures. While this session is no substitute for a full college course in analytical chemistry, it can help participants get a better grasp of analytical chemistry documents such as methods and specifications.

Science & Technology
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