As many of you know, I recently spoke about twinBASIC to Juanjo Luna's Access User Group España's annual conference.
The conference took place in person in Madrid, Spain. I presented via Zoom from Pennsylvania. George Young, president of the Denver Area Access Users Group, provided a live translation of my talk from his home outside Denver.
Juanjo has posted a video of the presentation on YouTube, which I linked to below. Additionally, I've included a link to Juanjo's presentation on vbWatchdog from the same conference (delivered entirely in Spanish).
My sincere thanks once again to Juanjo Luna for inviting me to speak and for George Young providing the translation (and so much more).
Presenting a Technical Topic in a Foreign Language
When Juanjo first approached me about doing this presentation, I was equal parts excited and terrified.
So, naturally, I said yes.
I get nervous enough when giving a presentation in English. Speaking to an audience of non-native speakers via a translator was something I had never even considered doing in the past. I had no idea what to expect.
Much to my surprise, it was far easier than I imagined it would be.
Extra Time to Think
I expected the time I had to wait for my English words to get translated into Spanish to be nothing more than a distraction that cut into my available time to present content.
What I hadn't considered is that during that time, I would have a chance to collect my thoughts before I had to speak again.
I've never worked with a translator before, but I can't imagine anyone handling the duties better than George did.
When I first thought of a translator, I imagined the human equivalent of Google Translate: I say a bunch of words in English, then pause for a few seconds while my robotic sidekick transliterates each word into its Spanish equivalent.
Luckily for me, that is NOT what George did.
Rather, he would wait for me to stumble through whatever point I was trying to make in English, and then clean up my thinking to present the concept as a single coherent thought in Spanish.
George Young was not my translator. He was my interpreter.
Technical Topics Require Technical Translators
Of course, a big part of the reason George was able to clean up my thinking is that he himself is a tremendous Access developer.
If you ever have to give a technical presentation in a foreign language that you don't speak, I strongly recommend you start by finding your own George Young: someone who understands the technical content well enough to act as an interpreter, and not simply a translator.
Without further ado, here's the YouTube link to the twinBASIC video:
Here's the YouTube link to Juanjo's presentation on vbWatchdog (entirely in Spanish):