Summaries 3/2000

  • Minisanasto uudesta maankäyttö- ja rakennuslaista / Anna Salmela & Johanna Suomalainen

  • TSK:n hallituksen konkari Kari Kaartama / Minna Isoherranen

  • Pro Gradu -tutkielma tekniikan kielestä / Johanna Peltoniemi

  • EURALEX 2000 -konferenssin satoa terminologeille / Virpi Kalliokuusi

  • Terminology Summer Academy 2000 / Mari Suhonen

  • ISO/TC 37:n kokoukset 2000 / Katri Seppälä

  • Kirjallisuutta

    Vocabulary of new Land Use and Building Act

    The new Land Use and Building Act came into force in Finland on 1 January 2000. The purpose of the new act is to improve public participation in area development and to increase municipalities' independent decision-making in planning.

    TSK's Environment Vocabulary (1998) contains the most essential concepts of the old Building Act. When the law was reformed, the concept system changed: the new law brought new concepts and some old concepts are no longer used. The intension of some previously used concepts also changed. The purpose has been to include the most essential new concepts in this vocabulary and to update the concepts of the Environment Vocabulary to correspond to the new law.

    It was difficult to find equivalents for the essential new concepts of the new law. The new Finnish law contains many new concepts that do not have equivalents in other countries' legislation. The Swedish equivalents have been taken from the Swedish translation of the Finnish law and these have been marked with svFI. Some terms have near equivalents in the Swedish legislation. English equivalents are both translation equivalents (marked with *) and near equivalents picked from the British legislation. German equivalents are from the German legislation.

    Kari Kaartama, veteran in TSK's board of directors

    Kari Kaartama, executive director of the Finnish Standards Association SFS, started the work in TSK's board of directors as early as in 1976. Since then he has worked more than 15 years in the board of directors, and has also acted as the chairman of the board. Kaartama says that it is not the board of director's task to create terms, but to take care of the economy and administration and to give guidelines which TSK applies in its daily work.

    Kaartama emphasizes the importance of information services; the results of terminology work must be made public in a proper way. It is important to find the right channel in order to reach those people who need the information. This applies both to term recommendations and standards.

    In Kaartama's opinion one language would be sufficient in international cooperation and communication. This would reduce translation costs. For example, international standardization bodies have three official languages and material must be translated into all these languages.

    In Finland those standards that are widely used are translated into Finnish. According to the law it is sufficient if a standard is available either in Finnish, Swedish or English. There are almost 13 000 valid SFS standards at the moment. SFS receives about 2000 new draft standards per year, and 250–300 of them are translated into Finnish.

    SFS is the central organization for standardization in Finland. It is a member of both the International Organization for Standardization and the European Committee for Standardization. SFS's task is to help the Finnish economy and to remove unnecessary obstacles to business. The purpose of standardization is not to unify everything, but to create common rules that will facilitate free movement of goods and information.

    Master's thesis on technical language

    Johanna Peltoniemi wrote her master's thesis on how terminology management can facilitate the translation of engineering documents. The thesis was written for Valmet Corporation's unit which manufactures winders and it dealt with draft and component names which are entered into the production management system and compiled into parts lists. The purpose was to study the formation, management and translation of names, and how to make the translation of parts lists more effective.

    The problem with parts lists is that they contain a great number of different designations, abbreviations and synonyms. Due to new and different designations the need for translation has become continuous. This need is noticed at the end of the documentation process when the deadline for the work is close. The parts lists are also used in many places: they are delivered to customers, they are used in assembly, in the packing and shipping departments and when components are bought.

    In order to improve engineering terminology Valmet has founded a working group which concentrates on developing designations for components. The equipment and parts are specific concepts in the field. They usually have a Finnish term and an equivalent in English. They do not necessarily have equivalents in any other language, because this kind of technical vocabulary does not exist in the language in question. In spite of this, the operation and maintenance manuals have to be translated into the client's language. Therefore many equivalents for such special concepts are translation equivalents coined in the company.

    Before the equivalents can be chosen, the intension of concepts must be checked. Some inconsistencies were found, e.g. the English and Finnish concept hierarchies could differ from each other. The translation of parts lists is one the most difficult tasks for a translator, because the terms have no context and even the text space may be limited. One additional difficulty is that besides terms that are specific to winders, the parts lists also include terms from several different technical fields: mechanics, hydraulics, pneumatics, automatism and electrical engineering.

    Valmet has at last realised the need for terminology work, and the work has been supported and experts have taken an interest in it. Problematic cases can be solved with cooperation and discussions. However, compromises between theory and practise must be made every day, e.g. because some terms are already established.

    Euralex congress in Stuttgart

    The ninth Euralex conference was arranged in Stuttgart in August. Euralex is a European organization for lexicographers, terminologists, dictionary publishers, linguists and representatives of language technology companies. TSK's terminologist Virpi Kalliokuusi and professor Krista Varantola presented their paper on user-sensitive lexical databases in the congress.

    The following questions were handled in the congress: how to diversify the use of lexical resources and to connect it to communication needs, especially in electronic communication; how lexical resources can better meet the various needs of users; and how text corpora and their automatic analysis can be better utilized when collecting lexical resources.

    Krista Varantola was chosen as the new president of Euralex for the next two years.

    Terminology Summer Academy 2000

    TSK's terminologist Mari Suhonen participated in the Terminology Summer Academy 2000 which was organized in Vienna in August. The programme dealt with the basic principles of terminology, computer-based terminology management, terminology teaching and training, terminology applications in localization environments and ontologies and terminological knowledge engineering.

    One interesting topic was how to search for terminological information on the Internet and how to evaluate the resources. A definition for an unknown term and equivalents in different languages may be found on web pages related to the topic in question, but the information should be verified from several resources. The credibility of a resource can be estimated e.g. by checking the grammar and style of the text. Usually the most reliable resources are the web pages of organizations or institutions.

    Localization has become more important, because products and related documentation must be adapted to different countries and cultures. When e.g. software is localized, the use of a terminology management system is important in order to ensure that all people who are involved in the project use coherent terminology.

    ISO/TC 37 meetings in 2000

    This year the Technical Committee 37 Terminology (principles and coordination) of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) organized its meetings in London. In recent years TSK and especially Virpi Kalliokuusi have worked with the renewal of ISO 704 Terminology work – Principles and methods and ISO 1087-1 Terminology work – Vocabulary – Part 1: Theory and application. The preparation of ISO/FDIS 15188 Project management guidelines for terminology standardization and ISO/DIS 12616 Translation-oriented terminography has also been carried out. ISO 704, ISO 1087-1 and ISO 15188 will be published in the near future.

    A project to renew ISO 10241 International terminology standards – Preparation and layout, published in 1992, was started and Virpi Kalliokuusi was chosen as the project leader. This standard is divided into two main sections: principles of preparation of terminology standards and how to present terminological information in terminology standards. More changes will probably be made in the layout section in order to take into account the recent development in information technology.

    The Technical Committee 37, as well as other ISO committees, will strive to make their work more efficient by starting to use mainly electronic communication. ISO has established an ISOTC server through which the Central Secretariat and technical committees, subcommittees and work groups can deliver electronic documents on the Internet. The server will make up-to-date instructions on standardization work available to all and it will reduce the vast amounts of paper to be mailed.


    Translation Terminology
    Translation Terminology presents about 200 basic concepts for the practical teaching and studying of translation. Four languages are included: French, English, Spanish and German. The concepts have been defined, and notes and examples are also used to clarify concept intension. Each language makes up its own section of the book including introduction and bibliography. The terms in each language are arranged alphabetically only within their own section. The book does not have a single alphabetic index, which would make term search easier.

    Dictionary of Chromatography and Related Methods
    The Chromatography Division Association of Finnish Chemical Societies published a new version of the Dictionary of Chromatography in 1996. This second edition contains about 6000 English terms and abbreviations with their German, Swedish and Finnish equivalents. Some new terms have been added, and especially the German equivalents have been revised.

    Electrotechnical vocabulary
    The Finnish Standards Association SFS has approved a terminology standard titled Radiocommunications: Transmitters, receivers, networks and operation based on the international standard IEC 60050-713:1999. The terms are in Finnish, French, English, German and Swedish and definitions in French and English.