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There are plenty of networking conferences to get involved with. Here is a quick overview of some forthcoming events:
BP 2017 translation conference
4th - 6th May 2017, Budapest, Hungary - Our Managing Director Nick Rosenthal is one of the speakers!
UA Europe 2017
Annual conference for technical communicators that focuses on software user assistance and online Help
Harrogate, England: 8th - 9th June 2017
The SalfTrans 25th Anniversary Conference
A translators' guide to the EC Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC
Stockport, England: 10th December 2013
Some useful links for you.
Let's start off by making an important distinction: Translation memory software (TM software) should not be confused with machine translation software. Let's have a quick look at what they each do.
Machine translation software can be found on many websites, such as Babelfish, or you can buy machine translation software such as Systran. They offer quick translations of blocks of text. Machine translation systems (and especialyl the web-based automatic translation utilities) assign an equivalent term to each word in the source text without taking context into account. Therefore, mistranslations often occur: We once saw the English word ‘Enter’ on the front page of a website (meaning "Click here to enter the site"). Unfortunately, it had been machine translated into French as ‘Entrent’ (meaning they go in) rather than as 'Entrer' (which is the correct French translation for click here to enter). Speaking with the company in question, it soon became clear that they had used a web-based service that uses machine translation. As a general guideline, machine translated text is not normally suitable for publication.
Translation memory systems differ in that a skilled, qualified human translator still plays an integral role in the translation process. Nothing is translated automatically and every translated word is reviewed by skilled, qualified translators. Translation memory systems break your document down into manageable translatable chunks called segments (often at sentence level). Once a segment has been translated the first time, the translation memory system remembers the translation and offers it as a suggested translation the next time the same sentence occurs in the document. This enhances consistency and saves time.
Translation memory tools are also called CAT tools (for computer assisted translation), and TenT (for translation environment) tools. Some of the main brand names include Trados, MemoQ, Swordfish, Across and Déjà Vu.
Most translation memory packages also allow translators to create glossary databases, recording the equivalent terms used in the translated version of your document, which proactively prompt the translator to use these terms as they occur throughout the document being translated. Again, this increases the level of terminological consistency. Likewise, if you have any preferred or corporate terminology to be used in the translated version of your document (branding, ‘buzzwords’ or product names used in the country of marketing), then we can add these to the glossary before the translation is started.
In essence, TM software should be viewed as a support tool for professional translators, rather than a translation tool. The use of TM software enhances consistency and saves time.
In addition to the benefits of stylistic and terminological consistency, there are also potential time and cost savings. When the TM software processes a segment which is similar (but not identical) to a previous segment, it assigns a similarity percentage rating to the new segment. For such segments, we apply a sliding scale based on percentages of our rate per thousand words for the language combination in question.
Over the years, SalfTrans have invested heavily in Translation Memory software, and the different filters for extracting the text from various software packages. We have also invested in developing the skillsets and fulfilling the training requirements of our translators and our Project Managers, to allow them to fully exploit this software.
This means that the time required for DTP may also be reduced, as the translated text is exported from the TM software straight back into the native format of the source document. Our DTP operatives do not therefore have to cut and paste from one format (or platform) to another. A reduction in time required for DTP equates to another cost saving for you.
If you already have a translation memory containing your existing and previous translations, we will gladly use this as reference material for the translations we carry out for you. We work with the majority of the TM software packages available (Trados, DéjàVu, Swordfish and MemoQ, to name but a few). And thanks to established open standards such as TMX (which stands for Translation Memory eXchange), we can accept your translation memory data from most CAT tools, and return it to you in a standards-compliant format after we have completed your translation.