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What do you use to translate?

  Tags: Translation
 Language Learning Forum : Advice Center Post Reply
11 messages over 2 pages: 1 2  Next >>
Fredwc1
Newbie
United States
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Studies: French, German, Spanish

 
 Message 1 of 11
10 March 2015 at 3:23pm | IP Logged 
What are you using to translate with?......I usually use google translate but I'm seeing
too many mistakes.
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nikolic993
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Yugoslavia
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 Message 2 of 11
10 March 2015 at 4:51pm | IP Logged 
I only translate single words and simple sentences with google translate. More complicated sentences are not translated correctly, especially when translating to or from a language that has a lot of cases.

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shk00design
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Canada
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 Message 3 of 11
10 March 2015 at 7:09pm | IP Logged 
The problem with any translation software is that we can't expect a language to get from 1 to the other
directly word for word. And then there is the problem of context. Without knowing what a paragraph of text is
about, there may be words & phrases that have 2 or more different meanings.

Basically no translation software can do the final version without some proofreading. You can use an online
translation tool as a starting point and edit the translated document after.
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daegga
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Austria
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 Message 4 of 11
10 March 2015 at 7:45pm | IP Logged 
apertium.org for related languages
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mrwarper
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 Message 5 of 11
11 March 2015 at 12:59pm | IP Logged 
I only translate when I already know my know way around the languages involved, so the only thing I need to cope with is unknown words.

When I don't know of good online dictionaries, I mostly use google translate as a sort of 'batch-mode' word look-up.

When I do know one, I use a home-brewed script that turns every word in a text into a link to a good online dictionary so I can do word look-ups as necessary while reading. Nowhere near the verb de-inflection of rikaichan or other fancy stuff, but it works for me.

Your reference to mistakes made by Google Translate really baffles me. Perhaps you could clarify what language pairs you translate, when or why, and what your expectations on any automatism or translation helper tool were/are... unless you expect good answers without asking good questions :)

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eyðimörk
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France
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 Message 6 of 11
11 March 2015 at 1:55pm | IP Logged 
mrwarper wrote:
Your reference to mistakes made by Google Translate really baffles me.

It doesn't surprise me at all. Maybe it has changed in the past few years, but a couple of years ago when I frequently had to make sense out of German it was bloody awful and would do things like stack all of the adjectives in a sentence together, despite the fact that they described different things, or stack all of the nouns together so that it was unclear which is the subject and which are the objects. Despite the two languages (English and German) being related, the sentences looked nothing alike. I ended up using a dictionary and, if it was still unclear, asking my husband to use his school German to work out who was doing what to whom, once I had all of the words.

As for today, don't even bother translating between a language pair that doesn't include English. For simplicity, I assume, Google does everything through English. So, if any possible English translation of a word in your source language means more than one thing chances are you'll end up with nonsense in your target language.
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mrwarper
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 Message 7 of 11
11 March 2015 at 2:11pm | IP Logged 
eyðimörk wrote:
mrwarper wrote:
Your reference to mistakes made by Google Translate really baffles me.

It doesn't surprise me at all. Maybe it has changed in the past few years[...]

I doubt it has. The reference baffles me because it strongly suggests disappointment, and thus a degree of trust in software that, in the absence of more context, fringes magical thinking.

I only use Google Translate as a replacement for online dictionaries and multiple searches.
Edit: you are right about English, though. I always translate to English, which seems to be their forte.

Edited by mrwarper on 11 March 2015 at 2:14pm

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Expugnator
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 Message 8 of 11
11 March 2015 at 10:41pm | IP Logged 
I use wordreference when available. I may google the word or sentence for context when necessary. I don't trust Linguee that much anymore because most of the Portuguese-English results seem to come from Portuguese sites that got an English version. Then I may try Google Translator as a last resource.


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