Why Choose a Human Translator Over a Translation Machine

by | Feb 16, 2015 | Translation

Translation is an ever increasing essential part of international business success and an important element in the efficiency of service providers. There are two ways of acquiring a translation service; either hiring a professional translator, (freelance or a translation company) or using a machine service, like Google Translate.

There is often the miss understanding that translation is just simply changing text from one language into another, however to create an effective, accurate piece of translated text, the essence and emotion of the text needs to also be converted into the other language. Human translators are really skilled at this, machines are not.

Services like Google Translate may be used to translate web pages so non-native speakers can understand what is written, however, the accuracy will be poor and limit the potential understanding of the original text.

Even though machine programmes allow you to translate whatever you require without any help and in the comfort of your own home or workplace; the end results are usually not of acceptable quality. Whilst these services are usually free and give you instant results, they are only good at giving you a basic idea of what the foreign text is trying to say, often one word in English can have many different meanings depending on how it is being used in a sentence, and machines will not pick this up. The majority of these translating machines give the meanings word by word – so when these words are grouped together they usually don’t make much sense.

Machine translation is quick and affordable but they are not able to translate parts that are orientated towards its inherent culture and express emotions, this can only be achieved by humans who understand the context and nuances of the language, machines are not able to do this. Idioms and slang can also be recognised by human translators but not by machines.

Machine translation will perform a literal translation of the text, they translate the text exactly and verbatim, which may seem correct technically but does not make much sense when being read – this is usually because sentence formation is completely different across languages. Human translators are able to recognise this and understand the context of the text before converting it.

Translating accurately is highly important in the business and service world – any miss-translated advertising, product description, terms and conditions, financial documents, legal documents could create financial disaster and even legal repercussions. That is why you need professional translation services.

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