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Custom Machine translation, a new revolution on the way?
Thread poster: Fi2 n Co

Fi2 n Co  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 14:32
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Excellent description, thank you! Nov 8

Anton Konashenok wrote:
MT


@Anton:
I have to thank for this, your post means a lot since it reflect real experience (even if wasn’t an enjoyable one) and presents some of the real-word problems that can be encountered. I’d like to address some of the problems that you came across:
_Not the intended use: Some may have high expectations hoping that their engine will be able to replace human translation. The goal at first should be to get suggestions that will include relevant terminology when below the fuzzy threshold of a connected TM (i.e. anything below 60 or 70% match).
_Quality of training data: Thank you for mentioning this. You get a good cook to deliver a tasty dish if you give him rotten eggs. The data has to be good. Upon upload, a good Custom MT should automatically eradicate some data that is not relevant. It can cut the input data in half depending on the data.
_Amount of data: Not mentioning glossaries, but focusing on TM, the nominal amount to build from scratch should be between 15 to 20 million words. It’s a lot and it has to be.
_Metrics: They can’t compare with actual human reading of the output. Metrics can be useful to the technician at the beginning while working blind. I give you an example: If I’m building for someone an engine from Hindi to Russian, I will have no idea at all of the quality, I will have to go by metrics at first.
_Human review: This is where the real testing lies. A good Custom Machine Translation platform should provide you with these. Here are a few examples or tests:
*Editing: the reviewer can be asked to edit the text. If he struggles (time + feedback) the engine is not ready for production and needs reworking.
*Comparing: the reviewer can be asked to compare two versions of text by two different engines (useful for comparing versions of the same engine or compare with a different tool etc.)
*Evaluation: What you were asked to do: give feedback and qualify issues according to preset parameters.
So the way these tools are managed has a lot to do with how it will feel for the translator. It is true and logical that they improve with time (same as with TMs). However bad data is a bad as bad TM, you can’t really use it. The sector is new so those handling these tools are fairly new at it too. So the margin for improvement is really there. BTW, my answers are based on the tool I know mentioned above.

Thanks again for your comment I really enjoyed reading it.
My bests 😊


 

Robert Rietvelt  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:32
Member (2006)
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
Saying Nov 8

In Holland we say 'a chain is just as strong as its weakest link'. This is what Anton is saying.

Thank you for your clear explanation.


Fi2 n Co
 

Fi2 n Co  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 14:32
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Indeed! Nov 8

Robert Rietvelt wrote:

In Holland we say 'a chain is just as strong as its weakest link'. This is what Anton is saying.

Thank you for your clear explanation.


Thanks Robert
Couldn't agree more!

My bestsicon_smile.gif


 

Kaspars Melkis  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:32
Member (2005)
English to Latvian
+ ...
strict glossary adherence is sometimes overrated Nov 8

Because translation quality is inherently difficult to measure, there is a tendency to overuse glossary adherence as a quality metric and that can lead to undesirable outcomes.

While in general I agree that glossary is important, however, there are some pitfalls when evaluation of glossary adherence is used for QC.

One case is when a term can have several meanings. For example, “power” can have different translations depending on subject (maths, statistics, optics, physics). Many technical texts will combine several aspects but the glossary may not include all fields. It is still up to a translator to evaluate if the given glossary term applies in the given sentence. I have often found that the term “statistical power” is mistranslated either because the translator was relying on the given glossary too strictly or were afraid to use a correct translation because the QC tool would signal it as an error.

Another is when glossaries get overpopulated with too many terms that can also have an ordinary meaning. For example, “a head” can be a specific part in some device that needs to be translated consistently and sometimes not with the same word as the head of a human, so it gets included in the glossary. The glossary will be used for all projects from the same client even if this term is never used again in technical sense. Again, it can be quite confusing to a translator who receives instructions “to follow the glossary without exception”.

Some terms in English text can easily change from a noun to a verb or an adjective but that may not be the case in the target language. One example is “screening, to screen, screened (patients)”. It is possible that the translation needs to use a different word in each case, or that the verb needs to be translated with a longer phrase. Compiled glossaries can rarely predict such cases.

It may be even the case when applicability of a term varies between texts of different registers. It is especially important in pharmacy where the language for product information/patient leaflet needs to be adjusted. Sometimes a professional term might not be appropriate for patients in English but be fine in other languages, or vice versa – some English terms might be fine to both doctors and patients but in other languages they have to be changed.

With this I don't want to minimise the necessity to use correct terminology in translations. I have seen translations where even simple terms are translated incorrectly. The most common mistake I have seen is “median” which for some reason often gets translated as “average”. Maybe this mistake happens because a translator was not really qualified for a given text. LSP may try to address quality issues by introducing strict glossary adherence which might work. But it can also mask translator's incompetence and creates texts that pass all QC metrics but still be quite incomprehensible.

After all, it is much easier to fix a translation that is good overall but uses non-standard terms than the one which has all the right glossary terms but poor readability.


Matheus Chaud
 

Kaspars Melkis  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:32
Member (2005)
English to Latvian
+ ...
another reason why glossaries may cause lazy translations Nov 8

If a translator finds an unfamiliar term, it forces them to do research and not only find the translation of the term but get better understanding of the subject. If all terms are already provided, translation task may seem easy and translator may not even realize that there is something more to it.

I remember a case where there was a mistake in translation of “formulation” which can have several meanings even in pharmaceutical context: 1) an actual drug for specific use, 2) a dosage form, 3) process of finding the composition of a drug, 4) production of a drug.

Those who can read Russian, will certainly enjoy this article how translators struggle with this term: http://provizor.trworkshop.net/2012/12/09/formulation/


 

Fi2 n Co  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 14:32
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Useful video Nov 9

Hi there!

Since many found this topic interesting by sounds a bit technical, I put together a video trying to describe what's in it for translators and LSPs. I hope you'll find it useful and interesting.
If you did, leave a like and share!
Link below:

https://youtu.be/0YeyhA4Jnv4

My bests to allicon_smile.gif


 

Fi2 n Co  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 14:32
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Curiosity didn't kill the C.A.T. not even its Master! Nov 12

Hi to all,

Just a quick one to address the elephant in the room:
After looking at all the posts made here and if you watched the video I published, we can draw a few conclusions.

_Some may have thought that MTs would replace human translation. It will hardly happen, not in the immediate future anyway!
_Some may have thought that MTs would replace CAT tools, it's very unlikely too.

But when used correctly tools such as Custom Machine Translations, used with a good CAT tool can definitely make a huge improvement in workflows when working for clients having big volumes to translate.

So curiosity didn't kill the cat, not this timeicon_wink.gif

My bests


 

Fi2 n Co  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 14:32
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Glossary making Nov 12

Kaspars Melkis wrote:

If a translator finds an unfamiliar term, it forces them to do research and not only find the translation of the term but get better understanding of the subject. If all terms are already provided, translation task may seem easy and translator may not even realize that there is something more to it.

I remember a case where there was a mistake in translation of “formulation” which can have several meanings even in pharmaceutical context: 1) an actual drug for specific use, 2) a dosage form, 3) process of finding the composition of a drug, 4) production of a drug.

Those who can read Russian, will certainly enjoy this article how translators struggle with this term: http://provizor.trworkshop.net/2012/12/09/formulation/



Hi Kaspars ,

Regading this issue, there is a good way around:
_Have a vast glossary that has no inconsistency in target: 1 source term = only 1 target term. It should work fine in your CMT
_In your CAT tool, it would be wise to have one reference glossary (not for fast insertion) that has one source term and a vast number of possible target terms separated by a comma and sapce. This helps the translator to select the adequate term to avoid errors.

I've seen that used in many cases and it has worked well.

My bests


 
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