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Trados offering free translations...
Thread poster: Martin Wenzel

Martin Wenzel
Germany
Local time: 22:26
English to German
+ ...
Oct 6, 2007

Well, dear colleagues,


I could not believe this, Trados is offering free translations at this website:

freetranslations.com

Admittedly, machine translation and a very clever way of linking to professional translators (I am sure all the translator offered by Trados also use Trados!!!) and their CAT tool.

By buying the Trados software not only do we destroy our own prices, but we also keep digging our very own grave!!!!


Martin


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patyjs  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 15:26
Spanish to English
+ ...
Try this... Oct 6, 2007

Here's the result of a sentence I entered for translation from Spanish.

The main objective was to introduce al professor to the discipline responsible for studying, since a scientific vision, the phenomena of teaching – learning, related to the school mathematics.

The blurb above the translation box says "This free translation is ideal for instant, draft-quality results. It is a "gisted" translation, providing a basic understanding of the original text."

Hats off to anyone who can get a basic understanding of the original text from this translation!

I don't think we have much to worry about, Martin.


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Sabine Trautewein  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:26
Member (2003)
English to German
Another one... Oct 6, 2007

Just had a look at it and tried it for myself

I entered "John took Mary for a drive" and requested an English-German translation, and the result was "John hat Mary für einen Antrieb genommen"...

No comment

Still, it's of course outrageous that Trados even thinks about something like that...


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LittleBalu
Germany
Local time: 22:26
English to German
+ ...
Not to worry Oct 6, 2007

patyjs wrote:

I don't think we have much to worry about, Martin.



I don't think so either. I typed in some English sentences just now from a book I'm translating into German. The results I got resemble German sentences - well, almost - but that's about all. It's neither a good nor a correct translation.


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Yolanda Broad  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:26
Member (2000)
French to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
freetranslations.com is a very effectived marketing tool for us! Oct 6, 2007

I've been recommending that those would-be clients who don't want to pay for translations and are sure I'd be delighted to "just help them out," to freetranslations.com for many years. I always tell them they can double check the translation by the software by translating the text back into their native tongue. They generally are willing to pay my prices once they've tried that.

Here's a quick demonstration of the method, using my text, above:

He estado recomendando que esos clientes aspirantes que no quieren pagar por traducciones y están seguros que sería encantado "ayudarlos apenas fuera," al freetranslations com durante muchos años. Yo siempre los digo ellos pueden duplicar cheque la traducción por el software traduciendo la espalda de texto en la lengua nativa. Ellos están generalmente dispuestos a pagar mis precios una vez ellos han tratado eso.

MYSELF have been recommending that those clients contenders that do not want to pay for translations and they are sure that would be delighted "to help them barely was," al freetranslations com for many years. I always say them they can duplicate check the translation by the software translating the back of text in the native tongue. They are generally willing to pay my prices once they have tried that.

Interesting that the last sentence back-translates very nicely, isn't it? Maybe the software was programmed by somebody with a similar purpose in mind?


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Jabberwock  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 22:26
Member (2004)
English to Polish
SDL does it, again... Oct 6, 2007

While I personally have nothing against MT, as I do not think it is relevant (yet?) to my business, I do know that many of my colleagues have quite strong opinions about it. Therefore, it still amazes me that SDL would choose such dubious marketing strategy, knowing well it might alienate some of their customer base...

And to rub it in the face, some more... "Free translation"? Well, that's a catchy phrase, although I hoped that SDL would ascribe more value to our profession... I wonder how well it resonates with professional translators around here?

What is more worrying, though, is that they have two different rates: one for "human translation" and one for "improving" the machine translated text... Which means that someone is supposed to go through that garbage and make a real translation out of it for half the price...


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Heike Behl, Ph.D.  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:26
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
Not Trados, but SDL Oct 6, 2007

SDL has always been a translation company, offering various translation services at different levels. On top of that, they developed their own CAT tool. Why should the translation services segment of SDL cease to exist or change its marketing strategy after the company bought Trados?

I know a number of translation agencies that offer free MT on their sites. It's simply a marketing tool. Why else would they offer human translation of whatever you typed in right underneath? The potential client will hopefully get the idea that MT is not the real thing; you can get it for free after all and there's nothing like a free lunch. If you want the real thing (HT), you have to pay.


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Heidi C  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:26
English to Spanish
+ ...
Use this tool to your advantage! Oct 6, 2007

When someone starts asking for a lower price for repeated words or fuzzy matches...

this proves that repeated words and fuzzy matches do not a translation make!


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Rafa Lombardino
United States
Local time: 13:26
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Legal disputes cost a lot more than legal translations!!! Oct 6, 2007

Using Yolanda's original intention:

I always tell them they can double check


Then the EN>ES machine translation:

Yo siempre los digo ellos pueden duplicar cheque...


Let's see how faithful the back translation will be:

I always say them they can duplicate check...


So, "double check" becomes "duplicar cheque", which back-translates to "duplicate check"... INTERESTING!

I want to see those people that need a 100-page contract done YESTERDAY using this lame service. They'll save a lot on translation (and editing/proofreading, if they don't want an inconsistent file after hiring X translators to translate Y pages each in a couple of hours for $5 bucks a page), but they'll sure spend millions in court battles to try to solve every single misunderstanding created by these stupid machines.

I'm all for TMs, as in "Translation Memories," created by translators during our normal work routine to work for us and save us our precious time, but stupid "Translation Machines" just make me laugh!

By the way, I really like Yolanda's idea and we'll probably implement something in our website that shows the contrasts of a lame "free" service and the professional services we actually can offer as responsible human beings.


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Martin Wenzel
Germany
Local time: 22:26
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Some misunderstandings... Oct 7, 2007

I am not worried about the fact that this translation machine is no good...

What I find outrageous is how SDL advertises. First they are offering free translations to allure potential clients to their webpages. OK, you all tell me this machine translation is no good...but low and behold Trados also offers quality human translations on the very same page. Or are you already a TRADOS translator (and that's why you keep a low profile)????

[I haven't tested this translation machine a great deal...

If you translate the text several times back and forth...OF COURSE, this will not improve the quality. It's only good for a lough...]


So don't worry if you feel the machine translation isn't any good or not good enough...SDL can surely improve their software WITH YOUR MONEY.


What's so outrageous is the fact that SDL Trados is the most expensive product as a CAT tool...yet if you read in the forums it's the program that is the least user-friendly and has the most bugs...

Proz has their own SDL TRADOS forum, ever wondered why....

Latest thing they are trying to sell us SP1 (service pack 1) to fix "THEIR" bugs.

And by the way, if prospective clients need a translation just for information purposes why should they use you in the future if they can have it for free?

This could be a future scenario of a translation agency offer:

Dear translator,

RUSH JOB!!! We know YOU can do it!!!

Do you have Trados and would you also be willing to proofread our Trados machine translation we are offering you 0.001 cent per source word...



Martin


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Martin Wenzel
Germany
Local time: 22:26
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
If I said Trados I meant SDL Trados... Oct 7, 2007

Just goes to show that they have always been a red rag to me with their advertising...

Early bird offer...

Whenever I tried to catch the early bird...there was another upgrade around the corner...I call this MISLEADING advertising...

Though the names may have changed, approach and strategy have pretty much stayed the same...


Martin


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Jabberwock  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 22:26
Member (2004)
English to Polish
Wait a minute... Oct 7, 2007

I am no SDL fan, as you can see from the previous post. Still, I am afraid your post contains some misrepresentations which will not help in this discussion...


What's so outrageous is the fact that SDL Trados is the most expensive product as a CAT tool...


Not really. While the tag price is pretty high, there are so many different promotions that you hardly ever have to pay it. DejaVu costs about the same, the comparable Transit edition seems more expensive, etc.


yet if you read in the forums it's the program that is the least user-friendly and has the most bugs...


All CATs have bugs. You see most bug reports on SDL, as it is most widely used... Besides there are different venues to report them, for example you see much more of bugs for DejaVu on its yahoo group list...


Proz has their own SDL TRADOS forum, ever wondered why....


Because it helps to keep all the information in one place? Wordfast has its own forum, DV has its own forum and so does Transit.


Latest thing they are trying to sell us SP1 (service pack 1) to fix "THEIR" bugs.


If you own SDL Trados 2007, you do not have to pay for SP1.


As for proofreading machine translation, I completely agree. I think translators should turn down such offers as a matter of principle.


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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:26
Flemish to English
+ ...
If you can copy and paste it, you can translate it Oct 7, 2007

From the freetranslations.com website.
A clear indication which way translation is heading in now and about 10-15 years.
courtesy of the translation community who partially financed Trados, now Sdlx.


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Marcelo Silveyra
United States
Local time: 13:26
Member (2007)
German to English
+ ...
That's nothing (Trados offering free translations, that is)! Oct 8, 2007

SDL is, after all, a company, and they want to make moolah. Now, certain elements of the translation community disagree with the practice. That's all fine and well, but...

How can the community as a whole point its finger at SDL when numerous "professional" translators participate in all sorts of unfair (and sometimes unethical) practices? i.e. claiming to be native speakers of languages of which they are clearly not native speakers (even when they think no one notices), reducing prices because they have to pay their mortage - regardless of future consequences for the market as a whole, accepting jobs in fields of which they know nothing about, etc. etc. etc. ad nauseam? I mean, sure, it's all fine and well to blame a software company (trust me, I'm not a big fan of Trados to begin with), but, ahem, if we can't get our act together in the first place, how can we expect them to do it first?


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:26
Italian to English
+ ...
Surely no one here on Proz would EVER do that... Oct 8, 2007

Marcelo Silveyra wrote:

claiming to be native speakers of languages of which they are clearly not native speakers (even when they think no one notices)




nah, can't be true!

[Edited at 2007-10-08 13:24]


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