Most of the work involved in translating is research. There are cultural contexts to consider, slangs and even topics you are not familiar with.
More than likely you will use Google to get the information you need. That’s why we want to give you some advanced research tips to help you do your work better.
Exact Word and Exact Phrase
When you search for a word or a phrase, Google tries to give you the most information possible. To do that, it ignores accents in words and breaks down phrases to find (in Google’s opinion) the most relevant search result for you. This won’t always be the best solution for you.
If you want Google to search for a word exactly as you wrote it, click on Search Tools, located on the top right of the search results and then click on the All Results dropdown and select Verbatim. This is useful when you need to disambiguate a word based on an accent or a hyphen.
If you want Google to search for an exact phrase without breaking it down, simply put the phrase in quotation marks.
Sometimes you need to research for a term but you know some words will get in your way. For example, if you search for Chihuahua (the Mexican state and city), more than likely you will get results for the small funny looking dog.
To exclude the word dog from these results, add a minus sign. Your search query will look like this chihuahua -dog. This way, Google will ignore all search results related to the dog.
Search a Specific Site
Sometimes you need results from one website and nothing else. For those cases, add the modifier site: followed by the web address from where you want to search.
For example: site:usa.gov immigration
Search by File Type
This is one of our favorites. Sometimes you need to search for specific documents like PDFs or Powerpoint presentations. To search in files instead of websites, add filetype: and add the three letter file extension.
For example: health care filetype:pdf
Find Related Websites
If you find a great website from where you are pulling useful information, you may want to use the related: operator to find other similar websites.
For example, related:translatorthoughts.com to search for similar websites.
These are some of our favorite advanced Google search tricks. What are some of yours? You can find many more search tips directly from Google here.
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