This is guest blog posting from Sharon Wilson.
Machine translation is not considered to be as accurate as a human translator when it comes to more complex translations. Typically, it only has the capacity to translate simple word for word translations. The accuracy depends on the languages translated and the complexity of the words translated.
What is Machine Translation (MT)?
MT is a method used independently of a human translator to translate text or the spoken word from the source language to the targeted language. It’s been developed to speed up the translation process and has been especially useful for businesses that are wishing to expand overseas to countries that don’t speak their company language. This trend is set to procure this year.
MT is quite simple software as it typically translates word for word without seeing the connection the word has in the sentence. This means the translation isn’t of high quality as it doesn’t recognize a complete phrase or sentence and how this conveys meaning. Of course, there are situations such as a tourist who wants to find out the meaning of a road sign and inputs it into MT software. The end result will probably be something the tourist can at least understand. Other instances where MT may be useful are tweeting, blogging and texting, answering adverts, booking hotel rooms online and taking part in online forums.
Advantages of MT
- It’s readily available, like Google Translate;
- It’s easy to use and fast;
- It’s either free or low cost;
- A human can read through the translation and improve it;
- Translation memories (TM) can be used to recall words that have already been translated;
- It’s useful for translating web pages.
Disadvantages of MT
There is no hard and fast way of assessing how good MT is as a translator, but depending on the pair of languages subject to a translation there is an accuracy rate of between 60 and 80%. There are other uncertainties about MT too such as:
- not all content will translate well with MT;
- different languages translate better, depending on the MT engine;
- some MT engines are better at translating specific subject matter;
- most MT tools have difficulty translating slang, technical terms, or nuances;
- some MT software produces translations that don’t flow well so they sound stilted.
Basically, MT translation can’t be relied upon, but human translators can.
A Blogger from Aussie Translations, Sharon Wilson has specialized in writing blog posts and have worked with entrepreneurs, executives, industry experts and many other professionals in writing and publishing, blogs, newspaper articles, SEO web content, and more.