Machine translation

Machine translation (MT, or automatic translation) is one of the most controversial topics of the translation industry. While CAT software is a standard now and nobody, hardly any professional translator, claims that is has a negative impact on the translation quality, machine translation has at least as many allies as adversaries. Machine translation earned its bad reputation mainly through free automatic translators, allowing for translation of web pages and any other texts, with no costs but with very low quality. Because of that, for many Internet users machine translation became a synonym of something worthless.

Yet, the technology of machine translation creates great opportunities and the quality of target text depends on the procedures involved. CM's aim is to use this technology as a tool of speeding up the workflow and reducing the costs, while maintaining the quality of human translation. Below you may find three main features distinguishing our approach from the one offered by free automatic translators:

  • Machine translation is not an artificial intelligence manifestation, but only a statistical interpretation of already existing translations — the so called parallel corpora — making it possible to find the most likely translations of non-translated phrases. Therefore, this method works according to the GIGO rule (garbage in — garbage out), that is, the quality of translation depends on the quality of used corpus. Automatic translators available on the Internet use as their one and only corpus the whole World Wide Web, called sometimes 'the great dustbin'. In a contrary, our approach is to use as corpora the translation memories containing only the high quality translations created as a long-time output of our operations.
  • Even the best corpus, if not specialized, is of a little value. After all, the same words can have different meanings for an IT specialist and for a physician! Automatic translators do not ask about the field - they always use the same corpus. Our approach is based on specialization. We own corpora prepared on the basis of single-field translations, with added thematic glossaries helping in avoiding terminology misuses.
  • Machine translation may attempt to replace human translators, but it can also prove to be a useful tool for them - in the same way as other devices help us in our everyday life. But it is always a human who decides which function to choose. Our approach is not about delivering computer-translated texts. Machine translation is only one of the matches proposed by a CAT tool. We, human translators, can accept, modify (in case of a minor correction needed) or completely reject the proposed translation. The next step for such prepared text is an editing phase, which is no different from the editing stage performed in case of human translations. This means that the final quality is not compromised in any way.


See also

Dedicated tools

Dedicated tools

Centrum Lokalizacji CM is a company operating where linguistics meets IT sciences. In our everyday work, we use various translation- and quality assurance-aiding software. Apart from the commercially available tools, we use original solutions described below.

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Quality assurance

Quality assurance

Assuring a high level of quality in the translation process is not an easy task. If a translation is to be considered as having high quality, it not only needs to be correct language-wise, but it also must conform to the requirements of the customer, i.e. it must be coherent, use proper terminology and have a specific format. ISO 17100 standard proves the efficiency of procedures used in Centrum Lokalizacji CM.

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CAT tools

CAT tools

Centrum Lokalizacji CM offers professional localization services. Since this sort of services involves a lot of team work, efficient terminology management and the project-based approach, it is necessary to implement CAT (Computer Aided Translation) tools. All translation services performed at Centrum Lokalizacji CM are always CAT-based.

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Terminology management

Terminology management

Terminology databases are becoming an increasingly important element of the localization process. The use of coherent terminology not only makes it easier to comprehend the translated text, but often it is the terminology itself that distinguishes a company, becoming a part of its image.

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DTP

DTP

Centrum Lokalizacji CM is equipped with powerful software enabling an efficient conversion of files from PDF to an editable format without loss of page layout or graphics, and later conversion to the original PDF format. Translation of such files is done with standard CAT tools and does not differ from translation of other text documents.

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