These days global marketing has gained in popularity. This means more and more businesses around the world are dealing with each other and often they speak different languages. It is therefore necessary for these companies to translate content from a foreign language into their own. There are two options available for translating content and these are machine translation and professional translation. Which one is better depends on a number of factors. Here is a brief summary of the differences between automatic translation and professional translation.
As its name implies, machine translation involves the use of automated methods to translate content electronically. Therefore, software has to be employed to carry out the translation. The software then takes the content and breaks text down into different words and phrases and then translates them into the desired language. The trouble with this method is that translated text often contains many syntactic errors, and that is because the words are not in the right order. The problem with machine translation is that the translation is often inaccurate and, in some cases, not appropriate for the desired purpose.
Machine translation works when the company is looking for a low-cost translation solution. This is why many companies are willing to overlook the poor quality of translation and will prefer machine translation over professional translation. The trouble is when we use machine translation to translate technical, medical or even legal content; the machine is not able to translate the content properly.
Machine translation will not replace human translation in the near future. Machines are only able to translate content word for word. This means that they end up doing a poor job. Professional translation is a better solution because humans keep many things in mind when translating content. They first interpret the text and then work out a translation. They make modifications where they are required and will also understand cultural elements and if no equivalent text is available in the target language they will make modifications.
Professional translators are able to convey cultural elements by first interpreting them and then providing semantically correct translations. They are not so concerned about doing word-for-word translation. Instead, they find the right substitutes and use them and in this way, produce much more authentic, accurate and error-free translations.
The only downside to using professional translation is when large volumes of content have to be translated. Professionals are somewhat at a disadvantage as they are not able to work at the same speed as machines.
The solution may be to combine human with machine translation. This saves time and money and is especially effective when the amount of content to be translated is very high. Machines can translate large amounts of text in a cost effective and timely manner. After they have translated the text, you can ask humans to proofread and edit the text to make it more accurate and error-free.
Global companies make use of both machine and professional translators. Companies that rely solely on machine or professional translation are at a disadvantage. Thus, the solution lies in combining professional with machine translation.