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MT: the best CAT?
Thread poster: Shouguang Cao

Shouguang Cao
China
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Jul 19, 2017

A: MT is already pretty good.
B: MT is not good enough to replace human.
Then a natural conclusion is that MT represents best CAT tool if used properly?


 

Lincoln Hui  Identity Verified
Hong Kong
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??? Jul 19, 2017

Overlooking for a moment the questions being begged here, it escapes me how the conclusion is reached from the premises offered.

 

Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
France
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Flawed logic Jul 19, 2017

I don’t understand the logic.

I think you are comparing two incomparable things. Apples and oranges.

Computer-assisted/computer-aided or machine-assisted translation environments cannot be confused with machine translation. This is Wikipedia stuff. Of course, in a CAT tool, you can use MT as a resource.

So what’s your point?


 

Shouguang Cao
China
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Sorry Jul 19, 2017

I thought MT itself is already computer-aided translation. Not sure how exactly those terms are defined, but from it's literal meaning,

Firstly, using a computer to translate as opposed to using a pen and paper, is Computer-Aided Translation (CAT 1.0)
Then, using TM tools (CAT 2.0)
And then perhaps using MT represents the latest Computer-Aid-Translation trend (thus CAT 3.0)

Dallas


 

Maija Cirule  Identity Verified
Latvia
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Strange question Jul 19, 2017

Shouguang Cao wrote:

A: MT is already pretty good.
B: MT is not good enough to replace human.
Then a natural conclusion is that MT represents best CAT tool if used properly?



A cat is a living thing.
Shouguang Cao is a living thing
The conclusion: Shouguang Cao is a cat

Something along these lines


 

Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
France
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CAT and MT Jul 19, 2017

In Machine Translation (Automated translation of natural languages), a software carries out the translation process from start to finish. It’s the machine that translates. Of course, the human (currently) has a place in this process, in the form of pre- and post-editing, machine training, etc. (and of course, all the data used to train the MT engine are a product of human translators/editors).

In Computer-Aided Translation, the translation is carried out by a human, with the help of a computer and a specialized software (CAT tool). So, in Computer-Aided Translation, it’s the human that translates.

That is why you cannot confuse Machine Translation and Computer-Aided translation.

[Edited at 2017-07-19 11:18 GMT]


 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
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A CAT tool is a toolkit of tools Jul 19, 2017

Shouguang Cao wrote:
A: MT is already pretty good.
B: MT is not good enough to replace human.
Then a natural conclusion is that MT represents best CAT tool if used properly?


A CAT tool is a toolkit of tools that help the translator perform various functions in addition to typing the translation itself. MT by itself can only provide translations. Without a real CAT tool, the translator using only MT would have to perform all those other tasks manually.


 

Shouguang Cao
China
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MT is not CAT? Jul 19, 2017

Is MT CAT? Why TM is CAT but MT is not? Is CAT equal to the so called CAT tools (actually TM tools) ? CAT has to mean more than just the TM tools.

I mean if I use MT to help me translate, why cannot I call MT CAT?

We can use a tool to mix up human and MT, not just human doing the post editing. For exmaple, with a complicated sentence, I only let the machine translate a section of that sentence to save my time but not the whole sentence. In this situation, MT helps me translate, and I am doing computer aided translation.


 

John Fossey  Identity Verified
Canada
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Member (2008)
French to English
Clarifying some definitions Jul 19, 2017

No, MT is not CAT. Perhaps there is some confusion about terms?

MT = Machine Translation - the machine translates
TM = Translation Memory - sentences already translated are remembered and suggested when a similar sentence needs to be translated
CAT = Computer Aided Translation - the human translates, while the computer aids by organizing the work, managing the Translation Memory, presenting the document one segment at a time and other tasks to speed up the human translator's work

CAT almost always includes TM management. Some CAT tools can include MT as an optional extra.


 

Shouguang Cao
China
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Thank you John Jul 19, 2017

Thanks you John for the crystal clear explanation.

 

Wojciech_
Poland
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How I understand it. Jul 19, 2017

I think that Shouguang simply asked why MT can't be called a CAT. Logically, since CAT stands for 'Computer Aided Translation', we could assume that Machine Translation is a form of an aid which involves using computers to provide translations that can later be post-edited by a translator.

Historically, however, the term 'CAT' refers only to software like Trados or Deja Vu, which works in a certain, quite specific way. It processes the source text, divides it into segments and uses translation memories, termbases and other tools (yes, also machine translation engines), to HELP the translator translate the text.

This is how most of us understand this term and that's why describing a MT engine as a CAT seems a bit odd. But once again, I agree, if the term 'CAT' wasn't so strongly associated with those specific tools like Trados or Deja Vu, then MT could be called a 'computer aided translation tool'. Why not?

[Edited at 2017-07-19 18:36 GMT]


 

Shouguang Cao
China
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Thanks:-) Jul 20, 2017

Indeed I am thinking if I can call a tool leveraging MT but with no TM feature can be called a CAT tool. Since MT as a technology is so good, it has potential to help translators more than the TM technology. If we consider both MT and TM as equally CAT technology, MT may represent the newer and more helpful CAT.

[Edited at 2017-07-20 02:37 GMT]


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
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MT is CAT Jul 20, 2017

Well, sort of. I use GT4T and it assists me in my translation work, which I do on the computer. So, by definition, my output could be termed Computer Assisted Translation.

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet…"


 

Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 19:59
German to English
You can call it whatever you want ... Jul 20, 2017

... but no one will understand what you mean if you call it a CAT, because that already means something else.

Why not call it an MT tool, if that's what it is? And does it literally contain no TM component? If I make changes to the MT results in one segment and that segment shows up again, will I be presented with the raw MT results again? That doesn't seem very helpful.

And I admit that there are gray areas: Most CATs now seem to be able to integrate MT results and I recently came across something called Matecat, which is a CAT, but seems to really stretch the limits in terms of its emphasis on integrating MT and the TMs of complete strangers.


 

Shouguang Cao
China
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still helpful Jul 21, 2017

Michael Wetzel wrote:

Why not call it an MT tool, if that's what it is? And does it literally contain no TM component? If I make changes to the MT results in one segment and that segment shows up again, will I be presented with the raw MT results again? That doesn't seem very helpful.


Hi Michael,

With GT4T you can add a translation of a term to glossary, Your text will be "translated" with the glossary first and then submit to MT. In this way, the term will always be translated correctly.

Dallas


 
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