Category: Business

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January 10, 2008

Speaking to Québec translation students

Filed under: — Natasha @ 1:15 pm

A PhD friend of mine in Montréal teaches translation to university students at the Université de Montréal, where ironically, I didn’t study because I couldn’t do it in Russian. Instead, I went on to McGill University to keep studying Russian which I get to use three times a year if I’m lucky.

I have been asked to talk to them via Skype on February 6 about what it is like to do translation work in Europe with countries like Belgium. Both the Flemish and French ask for English translations, but certain choices need to be made, for example, when to write the names of streets in Brussels in French, Flemish or both. I also translate French texts into English which will be read by the Flemish, so the names of cities need to be in Flemish rather than French. I learnt all this the hard way and it’s great to be able to share that with fellow French Canadians who really wouldn’t know these things unless they’ve worked in Europe.

Like in many other institutions, students at the Université de Montréal are oblivious to the way translation is done on the job market, either at a company or as freelancers. According to my friend who has worked in both companies and for himself, his students are focused on explaining away their choices and busy satisficing rather than doing assignments the way they would be done in the real world. Some of them still can’t look up things in Google. The biggest problem is that they have a serious lack of independent thought.

Let’s see if I can knock some sense into them before the job market does in a less caring manner.

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December 18, 2007

Lifehacking and guest blogging

Filed under: — Natasha @ 5:43 pm


The second edition of Lifehacking Academy in Arnhem was again successful and had some good vibes floating around. After giving my podcasting workshop to a small group of very curious people, I attended an unconference led by Microsoft employee Peter de Haas. It is nice that Microsoft lets him take part in these things without having to plug anything. That was very refreshing.

On a literally other note, I can’t help by share my enthusiasm for the latest Phonoboy album, “Pas de Temps”, an indie pop/rock band from Munich that sings in French. Besides a very tight sound, their French lyrics are very functional and to the point, something Francophones don’t generally do.

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December 6, 2007

Lifehacking Academy event Arnhem, December 11

Filed under: — Natasha @ 11:13 am


It is time for the second edition of the Lifehacking Academy, which will move east and take place at Het Hoofdkwartier in Arnhem on 11 December. I will be giving my podcast workshop and there will be congresses, unconferences, drinks, a Palace of Wisdom, tons of Macintoshes to hammer at and best of all, some very enthusiatic speakers including Sanne Roemen, Martijn Aslander and Taco Oosterkamp.

Find out more about hacking your life and keep up to date with the Lifehacking Academy on the most popular Dutch blog in the world,

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November 25, 2007

Filles Fragiles CD out now

Filed under: — Natasha @ 12:41 pm

Filles Fragiles

Finally, after about two years of hard work, the Filles Fragiles CD compiled by DJ Guuzbourg of Filles Sourires fame is finally here! The CD contains French pop music with an emphasis on soft sung female singers. On November 24 the launch was kicked off by a short yet nice performance by Paris’ Peppermoon (who are still looking for a record label). Then, DJ Guuzbourg along with myself, DJ Natashka alternately manned and womaned the turntables. And after that, special guest DJ Martin Hemmel all the way from Munich did what he does best: mix up French cuts to perfection while everyone dances it out of their system.Yes, people, there is a French scene in Amsterdam and it’s a groovy joint effort at that. Pictures coming soon, we’re still drinking coffee at this point.

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