Everybody has his own tale of terrible translation to tell — an incomprehensible restaurant menu in Croatia, a comically illiterate warning sign on a French beach. “Human-engineered” translation is just as inadequate in more important domains. In our courts and hospitals, in the military and security services, underpaid and overworked translators make muddles out of millions of vital interactions. Machine translation can certainly help in these cases. Its legendary bloopers are often no worse than the errors made by hard-pressed humans.
Machine translation has proved helpful in more urgent situations as well. When Haiti was devastated by an earthquake in January, aid teams poured in to the shattered island, speaking dozens of languages — but not Haitian Creole.… Seguir leyendo »