The use of the * Asterisk Placeholder in finding the right Collocation
It’s time to start our #GooglingForTranslators English Series!
This series offers valuable hacks for translators to increase their ‘Feeling Lucky‘ translation results while boosting their googling skills (linguistically-wise).
A) The * Asterisk Operator: Helpful in “finding the right collocation” (For the Arabic Version of this Article Click here).
The * is used ‘to fill in the blank in search phrases’
– A Collocation is ‘the company that words keep’ (Related! Right?)
e.g. 1: – Write on google “* Accident” or “Accident *”
– Results in bold: Compulsory accident
– Report an accident
– Concerned in the accident etc.
PS: After updating the Google algorithms, it is better to use the * sign inside a long-quoted sentence/ phrase to receive better results.
Also, remember that you can use more than one * sign in a single search attempt but add a white-space after each of them.
Every * represents just one or more words as Google treats it as a placeholder for a word or more.
e.g. 2: – Write on google “* with the law”
– Results in bold: comply with the law
– in accordance with the law
– The court agreed with the law
– in conflict with the law …etc.
The * helps us also in finding the right proverbs, quotes & idioms + any Biblical and/or Quranic verses.
Even in finding headline variants for our marketing purposes; the * can be an asset to get a bunch of rewarding results.
e.g. 3: – Write on google “Helping you * * *” and the results in bold will be rewarding!!
Want more? Please stay tuned!
Entrepreneurial Arabic Linguist (LL.B.) (B.A.)
I’m an Egyptian woman in my 30s passionate about language since childhood. I was born in Egypt & raised up in Qatar until I was 11 then returned back to Egypt i.e. I live & breathe MSA Arabic as well as Gulf & Egyptian dialects/ cultures!
I translate & localise from English to Arabic & specialize in legal, UN & EU affairs, as well as general & documentary translations since 2006. You are neither dealing with a Freelancer nor an Agency! But you are dealing with what is best in Both Worlds