About Translation

Why use CAT tools?

Last year, a Proz poll indicated that 88% of professional translators use a CAT tool. For the 12% of you who don’t, here are some reasons why we think CAT tools are essential:

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6 resources every translator should use

Contrary to what some may think, not all translators sit alone in a dark room, typing furiously, using only a dusty old dictionary for reference. Translation has moved on! It is more than just one opinion, one draft, one dog-eared dictionary. Translators, like lawyers, refer to myriad sources to select the best terminology, cite examples of similar contexts, delve into background information, and so on.

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7 Common Misconceptions About Translation

1. Machine translation (e.g. Google translate) is a great way to translate a website.   Google’s translation engine actually learns from content published on the web, so the more websites that are translated this way, the worse the quality of translation produced eventually becomes. Computers may be good at translating individual words and simple sentences that are repeated frequently online, however they will never be able to understand context. Only a human can understand a language and the subtleties within it. 2. Translation is easy and shouldn’t cost as much as it does. Translators are skilled professionals and are as knowledgeable and experienced in their specialist field as solicitors or medical professionals. When you commission a translation, you are paying for that expertise at a rate that reflects the time and investment the translator has put into developing their skills, and the ongoing effort to maintain them. You wouldn’t ask a carpenter to perform an operation on you, so why […]

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Localising Android apps, Google-style

Chances are, you use Google to search the web. You may even use the Google Chrome web browser, and Gmail for your emails. What you might not know is that if you have a smartphone that runs the Android operating system, like many HTC, Samsung, LG and Acer phones, you are using yet another Google product. Google financially backed Android Inc, and later bought the company in 2005. The first Android phone was sold in 2008, and now only 5 years later, Android has 64% of the global smartphone market. Adding another trick to their bag, last week Google launched its new Android app translation service.

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Join the Crowd – is crowdsourced translation the future of multilingual online content?

I first stumbled across the concept of crowdsourcing a few years ago, when a small globe symbol appeared in the bottom right hand corner of my Facebook profile. Intrigued, I followed the link to Facebook Translate, an application that enables any user to contribute their own translations of the ever-expanding site content. In an impressive feat of translation ‘by the crowd’, Facebook was translated into French in a 24 hour period by a group of 4000 volunteers in 2008. But what implications does this open call principle have for the translation industry?

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