Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Venturefest Bristol 2013

Venturefest Bristol 2013 once again brought together technology entrepreneurs, SMEs, investors, business support providers and anyone else with an interest in the event. It was held at the UWE Bristol Exhibition and Conference Centre last Thursday and provided a stage for showcasing innovative business ideas from within our region. The theme that had been chosen for it this year was collaboration. In the words of Alastair Watson, director of Science Bristol City Limited, we all have a better chance to excel when we work with other people and organisations.

I, too, had decided to attend the event as it offered a welcome opportunity to get away from my desk for half a day. I run a busy translation business from home, which generally suits me well, but even I sometimes feel the urge to venture out into the world of people. I always learn a lot at such events and they provide me with a fresh perspective on the business side of my job. It was great to also see some familiar faces, such as Sally Stevens, a freelance artworker who runs Salamander Creative. And I was pleased to meet Katarzyna E. Slobodzian-Taylor, who runs Mastermind Translations, and Kinga Macalla, director of Bristol Language School, who I’d previously only known via Twitter. Katarzyna and Kinga like me are members of the local association of translators and interpreters, the Western Regional Group.

We have a better chance to excel when we work with others

Working as a translator from home may appear to be a lonely activity, but in fact as translators we’re used to collaborating a lot in on-line environments. This can mean collaborating on projects with other translators who are dotted around the globe. It can involve using cloud translation software or compiling terminology lists using Google Docs where the person you’re doing this with might be several time zones away from you. Translators typically – maybe more than almost anybody else –  are cloud inhabitants. At the same time, they tend to be invisible as their work is quiet and is carried out in the background. I therefore feel it is important for us to go out and tell about our work!

Thank you to all whom I managed to speak to and who explained their products and ideas to me. Find out more about Venturefest Bristol 2013 by following the Twitter discussion @Science_Bristol and using the hashtag #venturefest.