Can a robot write a book? Many readers will answer this question with a heartfelt ‘No’. Still, scientists from the Meertens Instituut and the University of Antwerp have developed a robot that can write a story. Considering the technology, the book-writing robot is even smarter than its translating brother. A gift book that was presented in The Netherlands as part of the ‘Nederland Leest’ campaign (meant to motivate old and young to read) contains a story that was largely conceived by the robot.
The stances around machine translation are often quite unsubtle: translators are against the technology because it is seen as a threat or they are embracing it as the next great wonder. While it is often thought that translators are using machine translation for projects as a whole or that they are not using it, there is also a middle ground. In this article I share two other ways to benefit from machine translation – even without embracing it in full.
Of all the CAT tools that are used by translators, Trados and MemoQ are among the most popular. In nearly all surveys and polls on CAT tools used Memsource is ranking at the bottom, along with other tools like Swordfish and Wordbee. Nevertheless, Memsource is a very useful tool when it comes to translating general documents. In this Memsource review I highlight the pros and cons of Memsource for freelance translators.
Today is International Translation Day. Although the job of a translator is not necessarily more important than that of a lumberjack or a manager, it is certainly a good thing to wait for a moment and consider the value of our work. Especially now the job of a translator is threatened from many sides – even from inside the industry.
A conference with big brands like Apple, Google and Facebook as the main sponsors does not happen that often and certainly not in the translation industry. Nevertheless that is exactly what happened last weekend in Copenhagen, where the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods on Natural Language Processing was held. You guessed it: participants to this weekend conference with the long and difficult title dived into machine translation. The sponsorship by the big brands clearly shows a huge interest in MT by companies that spend billions of dollars on research that will probably pay off some day. What is all the fuss about?
It is a simple rule of thumb for communicating: if you want to convey your message, you should find the right tone of voice. Have you ever imagined a grumpy voice-over for a nappies brand or a tired voice-over selling city trips? Chances are great that you would shake your head in disbelief and never decide to buy those nappies or book that city trip again.
Tone of voice is a powerful tool for selling products and services, but finding your unique voice in translations also comes with some considerations worth sharing.