Poll: Would you work on a project that is specifically aimed at improving machine translation?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 16:26
SITE STAFF
Nov 3, 2017

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Would you work on a project that is specifically aimed at improving machine translation?".

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Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
No Nov 3, 2017

Not because I'm anti-MT but because I don't translate the right kind of stuff.

It also sounds monumentally dull.


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 01:26
Spanish to English
+ ...
Maybe Nov 3, 2017

If they paid me shedloads of boodle.... and it wasn't monumentally boring.... and if there were some kind of component in the equipment finally developed that stopped numpties using it to undermine the market for real, human translation.

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Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 01:26
Member
English to French
Maybe Nov 3, 2017

EUR200.00/hour as a starting point for negociation.
Because it is certainly monumentally dull indeed, and boredom must be appropriately compensated.

Philippe


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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 00:26
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Maybe Nov 3, 2017

With age I'm getting increasingly selective and I refuse most tedious jobs like that, but there have been occasions when a client managed to persuade me…

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:26
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes Nov 3, 2017

The question is ambiguous: (1) Does it mean post-edit a particular machine-translated document? OR: (2) Help to develop improvements for machine translation in general?

If it's (1), I do it quite often because my client pays very well. If it's (2), I often provide feedback on the assignments that I have post-edited. As for working to improve MT in general, I have done it in the past, but it's no longer my area of interest.


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xxxGitte Hoveds
Denmark
Local time: 01:26
Danish to English
+ ...
Depends Nov 3, 2017

I don't choose my projects based on what they are to be used for, but on the basis of whether I find it worthwhile working on them.

If the text is interesting, the client is professional, the pay is acceptable, and the delivery terms are agreeable, I might take such jobs.

The idea that machine translation is the big evil in the world of translation is so outdated. It is here, and it won't go away. It will only get better if the input into any MT system is good, and who would be better at producing good translations than 'We the translation people'?


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DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
yep Nov 3, 2017

I'm a bit of programmer and a little of linguist, let alone I enjoy learning something interesting and useful, especially in my fields.

Ain't it funny to learn how languages developed, its common grounds and historic connections, and so on--to come to specific conclusions, which would improve the trends?

Why, when I teach something, I become better too: no tool may be a rival; just an instrument.
Or should one really disdain, say, cars for they run much faster? PC-haters? Anti-cookers, anyone?)


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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:26
Member (2004)
English to Italian
No... Nov 3, 2017

why would I shoot myself in the foot?

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Rita Utt  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 01:26
Member
English to German
+ ...
There's no way to stop machine translation Nov 3, 2017

but I'm not qualified for this kind of work.

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Sarah Brodacz  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:26
Member (2010)
English to German
+ ...
Not sure Nov 3, 2017

Coincidence? I just received a general request for post-editing MT today...
And decided to keep it over the weekend to give it some thought. I am not sure if I want to do it, and if yes, what to charge. MT is certainly gaining ground, whether we like it or not, and on the one hand, as Giovanni put it, one might ask whether we should support it. On the other hand, if we as professional translators do not support it, MT quality won't be improved.
Well, as I said, I'm not sure.


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Tradupro17  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:26
English to Haitian-Creole
+ ...
No Nov 3, 2017

I think it all depends on your language pair. As for me, when I worked on MTs in the past, I spent much more time fixing the translation than if I did the translation myself. In the end, I worked more for a fraction of the pay.

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Mario Chavez  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:26
English to Spanish
+ ...
A skeptic's eye Nov 4, 2017

At the start of my career, I did MT postediting (it wasn't called that in 1995), and I was bored.

Turn the clock forward to 2013 and my MT experience was vastly different. Not only was I paid a handsome hourly rate (I negotiated it, of course) but I had the final say on the translation. Some paragraphs required minimal or no editing while most were the subject of extensive revisions. All by the hour.

The subject matter was the opposite of dull: cybersecurity.

As a human being, I tend to be skeptical about toolmakers' claims about their products, not just MT. By way of example, I refused to use Trados for many years in the mid to late 90s, until learning Trados became a necessity to be considered for a full-time (well paid) job. For a software company. In Alabama, of all places.

So, while I'm still skeptical, I don't make these kinds of decisions be governed by simple likes or dislikes. I need facts, and facts aren't made out of opinions or gut feelings.


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Maxi Schwarz
Local time: 18:26
German to English
+ ...
same coincidence Nov 4, 2017

Sarah Brodacz wrote:

Coincidence? I just received a general request for post-editing MT today...

I got an e-mail checking my interest not only in post-editing, but in collaborating in working to improve MT and/or post-editing. I have received several translation requests by this company in the past, always wanting to pay a fraction of my regular rates, and I was rather sure they wouldn't go for my proposed fee, which would be hourly and not per word, and at a professional level of fee. As soon as a poorly translated text is edited at an hourly fee, it ceases to be profitable for the company, since it takes longer than translating the text, and is thus more expensive than a normal translation. If someone is willing to pay me two or three times as much as it would cost to translate normally, why not? But every regular post-editing request I've received was always with the expectation to pay from 0.03/word or lower.


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Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 20:26
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Nov 4, 2017

Going against an obvious market trend is not very smart. Despite all the negative points I see in MT, it IS the future of translations, so those who are well-acquainted with them are the ones with better future in our market.
And I'm sure the question is not about post-editing. Post-editing does not anyhow improve machine translation. I belive the question is about something a bit more significant, like working directly with the MT managers and companies.
I'm already doing it in a way since I have a big client that sends me jobs practically every day in Google Translating Platform, which is by far the worst translating platform available in the market, but it does contribute a lot to improve MT, as it feeds the GT database.

[Edited at 2017-11-04 18:09 GMT]


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Poll: Would you work on a project that is specifically aimed at improving machine translation?

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