MT Post-Editing

We are all familiar with the Google and Bing translation apps, and other online Machine Translation (MT) systems. To help you assess the role that online MT could have in meeting your translation needs, we’ve put together a simple risk / benefit analysis:

Benefits of online MT

  • Fast and convenient “gist” translation
  • Free / low price service
  • Easily accessed via desktop PCand mobile phone
  • Simple translation process for online content and smaller docs
  • Suitable for non business-critical internal communications
  • Suitable for instantaneous social and leisure translations

Risks of online MT

  • Relies purely on a database of sentences and phrases enhanced by linguistic rules
  • Often only finds the closest translation available, increasing the risk of errors & omissions•
  • Can dilute your brand and message through incorrect tone and style
  • Doesn’t “understand” your industry
  • Doesn’t know the specialist words and terminology used in your industry
  • Stores your content on public cloud servers with no guarantee of data security
  • No guarantee of accuracy, and no professional liability in the event of problems

Our service

For non business-critical content, AST provides a post-editing service for machine-translated texts. For an agreed budget a professional translator in the required language(s) will work through the MT output correcting the most critical errors and improving readability.

Please bear in mind however that the risks listed above will always remain to a greater or lesser extent. For many translation projects professional translation will be the better option in terms of fitness-for-purpose and added value.


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