I have translated Three TED talks and reviewed one talk. This will help many people to understand the complex things easily through their mother language. TED talk translation has to be completed in 30 days and it will be reviewed in 15 days by another person then only it will get published in your profile as well as in TED stage. The translations I did listed below, click the link to watch it in Tamil.

Marco Tempest : Augumented Reality, techno – magic

Camille Seaman: Haunting photos of polar ice

Aditi Shankardass: A second opinion on learning disorders

You can become a translator and translate TED talks that can help your community to analyze and discuss on it, but I faced a lot of problem while doing translation and also while reviewing a TED talk.

TED Translation graph

Problems in Translation:-

  • Since the talk is in English, it’s really tough to translate into Tamil. There are many technical jargon in many talks, to find the suitable Tamil word you will have to dig your head. There are two good websites to help you out in finding suitable words.



  • Even though you find difficulty in identifying words like “Electroencephalography” , “Yuck”, “Yippee” and other engineering oriented terms.
  • Also the coherence is the major problem. When a speaker speaks in English he will have a flow, to replicate the same flow it’s really difficult.
  • Next is you can’t reproduce the tone set by the speaker. He might have cracked a joke, but your translation might not generate smiles in people who view your translation.
  • You need to set the line that will bring meaning in your language, translating word by word will not work. It’s better to read the entire line and translate the entire sentence into your language.
  • Read line by line and understand it. Also read the very next line that might have relation to the previous line. If you have missed it then your essence of translation will go in vain.
  • You cannot translate the talk in a colloquial way, so you need to put pure words from your mother tongue.

Problem while reviewing :-

I took two talks for reviewing unfortunately I was able to review only one talk. There were many difficulties in review too.

  • The translator perception will differ from you. This is the first problem.
  • While I took the review, it was mostly translation than review, that person didn’t even translated Typewriter. That’s really tough.
  • You conceive one opinion of the sentence that differs from the translator. It’s better to have a communication with the translator. Mostly they don’t respond to your emails. They think that you find fault in them.

So translation work is not easy, you need to be very curious, patience and clear while you do translation then only you can do this job.