Machine translation: Can it be used to translate travel industry content?

by Manuel Herranz There have been strong opinions for and against machine Translation over the last few years. Whilst the general public has become a keen user of free online services, professional translators have poured bitter criticisms against the technology. Understandably, because the language industry is a small industry compared with other sectors where automation took place years ago (automotive industry, printing, telecommunications, to name a few). The Internet and in general any industry based on electronic communications has added to the increase in demand for multilingual websites, which means more translation for eCommerce sites and website translations. There are many supporters of machine translation technology because of the many advantages and problems it has solved where a translator could not be at hand and human translation was not an option. See the video celebrating Google Translate’s 10 years. But it has also gained something of a bad press, particularly […]

IBM + Lionbridge MT agreement – What does it mean for the industry?

by Manuel Herranz The news of the month has undoubtedly been the announcement by Lionbridge to partner with IBM to develop (and probably offer) machine translation solutions. Possibly, the intention is to offer the advantages of MT to Lionbridge existing clients and maybe to control the technology. After all, whoever controls the technology, has a good chance of gaining (or consolidating) market dominance. The move must be welcome by all true believers of MT as the (new?) force of change in the translation industry. However, even though Lionbridge is the biggest language company jumping in the MT-DIY boat, it is not the first one to combine the offer of MT+PE as a substitute to the (increasingly old-fashioned?) TM or T+E+P models. With translator production reaching 850-1000+ words per hour and mounting production and  price pressures, 20th-century technologies seem too cumbersome and antiquated for the demands of multilingual digital content. Who […]

IBM seeks to burnish its machine translation solution with a “human” touch

The software giant is improving translations of his expected n.Fluent aimed at instant messaging with the help of thousands of employees. The system converts text in real time and is being tested internally. Using a series of crowdsourcing strategies and events, IBM’s n.Fluent has managed to successfully engage and nurture an active, multinational pool of volunteer translators, who are dedicated to innovation.  This is just one of the strategies IBM will use to add the “human” touch in its announced, and soon to be released machine translation solution. The tool seeks to become an important channel for communication between different languages in instant messaging systems, commercially and socially. The IBM statement is important for the translation and localization community, “one key cornerstones of the n.Fluent project is its Crowdsourcing strategy-which enables us to effectively tap into the collective power of bilingual IBMers for translating sentences or correcting machine translated sentences-for […]