MT — checklist before you even bother

wasting timeThis is a follow-up to my earlier post on MTH improvements.

MT has been a (sometimes superimposed) buzzword among early (or not so early now) technology adopters who are translators. Setting up an MT engine and maintaining it on your own, however, can take a lot of time and effort with disappointing results. These simple questions will help you decide if it’s even worth your thought.

Don’t bother training an MT engine if:

  • You don’t have a quality TM of at least 1,000 segments.
  • It’s not a recurring project and it has less than 10,000 words to it.
  • It’s written like a novel (i.e. written by different authors in different styles with highly variable sentence length and ample use of synonyms).
  • Your CAT tool doesn’t have an API for MT.

These are the prerequisites that will help you save a lot of time you could use to spend with the people you like.


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