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TIP #15 - This tip was sent on the week: 7th - 13th Nov, 2004

These tips apply to the following programs:

  • ESI Professional
  • ESI Standard

Machine Translation - Part I

 

There is a pervading concept inherited from the first years of Machine Translation (MT) that Machine Translation in general does not work. That it is just for fun.

 

As all inherited concepts, this notion is partly correct and partly not.

 

Automatic, unedited translation is useful for understanding a document when the original is in a foreign language. You can get the gist of the document and generally understand what it says. Or, you can also use it internally to communicate with Spanish-speaking employees, staff or friends.

 

In two words, we can say then that automatic, unedited translation is adequate for 1) understanding documents, and getting the gist of them and 2) for informal, non-critical, written, in-house communication.

  • What can we say about ESI in this regard?

Word Magic offers automatic translation in the less expensive ESI versions. We know ESI’s accuracy is much higher than that of other MT systems, mainly because it has a dictionary with 600,000 translations, including a collection of 225,000 colloquial expressions and idioms in both languages. But even so, automatically translated texts cannot be used as final, publishable translations. Human edition is a must.

 

And here is where ESI PRO really takes you to the next level of usability. ESI PRO is the only system that offers live editing functionality with its Interactive Mode.

 

This does not mean that you translate the document and edit it at the end. This means that you can edit the translation sentence by sentence as you go along. Furthermore, ESI PRO gives you all the available choices, so that the only thing you have to do is click on the displayed options you want, like a menu at a restaurant!

 

The translation division at Word Magic always uses it for translation jobs, and they experience a 50% reduction in time and effort, if not more.

 

We claim that this concept of Interactive Editing takes ESI PRO to a higher level in the MT industry: It has made MT --for the first time ever— a practical translation method, an intelligent tool.

 

In our next Tip we will explain this, plus describe in more detail some of the powerful functions behind the Interactive Mode of ESI PRO.


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