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  • Writer's pictureelenaburan

Through the eyes of an interpreter

Interpretation is something everyone does but few benefit from

If you were among Nikola Tesla, Richard Branson, Ray Bradbury, Ichak Adizes, and saw an unidentified flying object in the sky, what do you think each of them would say, and how would you interpret their words?

Let's take a close look at interpretation, we can't do without it, but we need acceptable functional, not abstract, descriptions. Interpretation is the search for a common basis of communication and the construction of a refined mental model of interaction based on the found common meaning of values. The adopted model influences decisions about life and business.

If you were among Nikola Tesla, Richard Branson, Ray Bradbury, Ichak Adizes, and saw an unidentified flying object in the sky, what do you think each of them would say, and how would you interpret their words? There is a possibility that it could be a spacecraft, terrestrial or extraterrestrial, a military satellite, a meteorite or something else. Imagine what each of them would say. What would you do if you heard their words?

Communication for the sake of communication does not exist. People feel the need to communicate to clarify their understanding. They receive information and interpret it to fill gaps in their knowledge and experience. New information does not automatically fall into place, it must be interpreted personally, and in the interpretation, free will, attitude, intuition, experience and knowledge come into play. This is well known from the example of parables and fairy tales; everyone listened to the same parable from the Old or New Testament, everyone understood it in their own way, and someone even got that it was addressed specifically to him or her. The richness of interpretation reflects each person's uniqueness, diversity of opportunities, and competence to make the most of what they hear.

The ability to make the most of information can also be interpreted. For example, a person with intuitive intelligence reads people and events through their inner senses. This saved the lives and property of many. But the practical and emotional type of intelligence accepts only the facts of physical reality, it does not want to listen to predictions and does not believe premonitions. Practical one looks at what kind of shoes you wear and what bag you came to the meeting with. Rational people interpret through analysis, checking with facts and examples from the past. They make decisions based on precedents. Also in the system of cross-cultural differences in business communication, it is described that relationship-oriented people interpret any information in the context of relationships and try to find harmony in everything that is around them and even within them. So, the four main types of intelligence have their own interpretation tools.

What are interpretation tools? Let's get a look. Let's return again to the mental meeting with Tesla, Branson, Bradbury and Adizes. You could read the texts of each of them, you could watch a video or read a book about their life and work. You can find in each of them their own logic and manner of descriptions. Plus, Richard Branson laughs happily all the time telling his stories. And Nikola Tesla is mostly silent and mysterious. “Everything is nothing,” Ichak Adizes said. But Ray Bradbury has put every little detail into its place, being very inventive and witty. And I get great pleasure from reading each of them, they are equally important to me. I take words from everyone and build my own universe, where there are all kinds of earthly and celestial objects. How do I do this? I do this in a way both similar and dissimilar to their ways of reasoning. I'm with them, but I'm on my own, I'm who I am, right? So, the logical technology of interpreting the same events makes people unique, but connected to each other by common values. Otherwise, there would not be understanding at all.

What might interpreter technology include? Algorithms and competencies. New mental and sensory models of reality are built algorithmically and in accordance with competencies. Competencies - from Italian “cómpito” that means task, hence computations, competitions, competitors are with common root, the general meaning is “whoever copes with a task better is competent.” Rational, intuitive, ethical and emotional competition forces one to interpret through the prism of a system of models, through a single “one’s own” or “other’s” model, synthesizing a new model through the integration of all participating models, through analysis and subtraction of what is unnecessary from one’s own or someone else’s model, through the absorption of someone else’s model or imposing his or her own. This may include processes of acceptance, joining, filtering, picking up, leading, involving, synergizing. The order of application of competencies is built into an algorithm. And algorithms work on a personal, social and global level; they do not necessarily coincide at each and every level, but they can complement and reinforce each other, they can be arranged in a hierarchy or net, or they can be even in contradiction to varying degrees. The more harmonious and complete the interpreter’s technology is, the more effectively and efficiently she or he receives the result of the interpretation.

Each of us is an interpreter, but not everyone can make people happy, successful, or benefit from interpretation. So, what purpose do we put when we interpret? In what way to accomplish it? Let’s learn something from it.


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