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The Strictly Spanish Blog


Neural Machine Translations: Are They Really Replacements for Human Translators?

4/27/2018 by Sara Leonhartsberger

In previous blog articles, we have discussed the detriments of over-reliance on statistical machine translations, such as Google Translate, exploring how their phrase recognition systems often lead to mistranslations and altered messages. However, a new advancement in machine translation, neural machine translation, has gained prominence, research, and major advocates in increasing numbers. After comparing the two models and mentioning advocates for neural machine translation, we propose why human translators still remain viable in the wake of this new translation technology.

 

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Transcreation: A Pivotal yet Unacknowledged Act within Translation

3/2/2018 by Sara Leonhartsberger

While the concept of language translation (the act of transferring information from one language to another) is widely known, the element of transcreation within translation is often obscure to those outside the translation industry. Transcreation refers to the act of developing alternate phrasing in the target language to convey the same meaning as the source language; while this is a common element in translation, some forms of translation require more transcreation than others when the original meaning faces a greater risk of obscurity. Some areas that offer frequent opportunities for transcreation are marketing slogans, rhyming text, and idioms.

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Reliable Sources: The Lifeblood of Good Translations

10/23/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

Although the expansive Internet has provided nigh unlimited access to a plethora of sources for translators, these sources are not equivalent in reliability. Much like journalists, translators should verify and adhere to reliable sources for their work, producing the most accurate and thereby highest quality translations possible. The translation industry has recognized certain organizations and associations for their reliability, while translation businesses have also established certain methods concerning sources to ensure accurate translations. At Strictly Spanish Translations, we utilize both the sources recognized by the translation industry and the sources we have generated through extensive work with our clients.

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Cultural Awareness: A Factor Human Translators Consider

9/25/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

As discussed in previous articles, machine translations have recently been considered as a viable replacement for human translators, being able to translate documents word-for-word. However, human translators bring to translation irreplaceable elements, such as careful editing or particular language choice. Informing language choice is the notion of cultural awareness, the ability to understand or research a culture’s associations with words to better convey a message to that culture. While machine translations often take a literal approach to translation, word-for-word, human translators often engage in the practice of “transcreation”, the act of generating the closest meaning while acknowledging the cultural mindset surrounding that particular word choice.

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Stick with What You Know Best: Specialization in Translation

8/2/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

Within the vast translation industry, translators utilize specialization to highlight their aptitude for certain projects. While specialization may refer to language pairs, such as English to Spanish, another aspect of specialization is subject-matter. Subject-matter pertains to the technical terms, practices, and format found in professions or topics, such as the medical field or law firms. Professions like these often seem to have a language of their own, requiring developed skills to understand the terminology in the source language even before translation. In acknowledgement of this fact, translators often choose to specialize in certain fields, possessing knowledge of both the field’s terminology and the language in which the text is to be translated. Specialization in both language pairs and subject matter ensures quality translations and thoroughness to a translator’s work.

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An Aid, not a Replacement: Machine Translations and Translation Software

6/28/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

Within the Digital Age, software technology has sprung to the forefront of several professions, whether digital blueprints for the architect, a digital catalog for the librarian, or machine translations and translation software for the translator. However, there remains a stark contrast in the perception of technology’s purpose within these professions; while the architect and librarian are perceived as professionals using technology as a tool, the translator must contend with the view of technology as a replacement. With the advent of easily accessible machine translators such as Google Translate, a notion of professional translation services being no longer necessary originated, pitting translation professionals against the technology. Instead of viewing machine translation and translation software as aids to translation, many translators have now developed a reluctance to implement these methods for their perceived threat to the profession.

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What You Are Paying For: A Comprehensive Translation Process

5/22/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

In previous articles, the consequence of a poor translation and the cost of free translation tools were discussed, describing how a poor translation damages the relationship of a business with its audience and how free translation tools fail to guarantee accuracy and privacy. In contrast, a good translation incorporates several aspects of the writing process; a thorough translation job will include not only translating but also proofreading, editing, and integrating the text into the layout.

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The Consequence of a Poor Translation: A Damaged Relationship with Your Audience

4/7/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

In the previous article, the cost of free translation tools was discussed, specifically how Google Translate provides an inaccurate, public, and awkward translation that affects a business’s image.  Continuing that train of thought, another consequence of a poor translation is the negative effect it will have on your target audience.  In the current political climate that seems unwelcoming to the Hispanic audience, that audience will naturally gravitate to well-translated articles, advertisements, and employee manuals.  A good translation indicates respect for the audience, which evokes respect from the audience. Potential clients or employees will have a more favorable impression of a company precise in its translated work than one imprecise in its translations, for if a company presents a poor translation, other aspects of its business may be perceived as equally erroneous.

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The Cost of Free: Google Translate and Its Impact on Your Image

3/15/2017 by Sara Leonhartsberger

Intuitive, instant, and –most favorably—free, Google Translate allures many businesses to use the digital tool instead of human translators; on the surface, it appears logical to implement a seemingly omniscient tool to avoid another expense. However, like most “free” offers one encounters, Google Translate contains hidden costs that may harm a business’s credibility, privacy, and target audience.

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English-to-Spanish translation challenges: nurse practitioner

7/31/2013 by Susana Schultz

As promised on a previous blog, this is the first article on the subject of challenging English terms to translate. Nurse Practitioner is one of them. Why? Because there is a tendency to translate it literally and that would create an incorrect translation.

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Should: A simple verb that presents a challenge to a good Spanish translation

7/24/2013 by Susana Schultz

We use “should” all day long. Our clients use it in their English materials all the time. Most of us think that it is indicating a suggestion. In English, the intent doesn’t affect orthography because “should” is “should” regardless of the intent of the writer. The form doesn’t change.

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Spanish translations: It is key to know your source like you know your target and vice versa

7/18/2013 by Susana Schultz

It sounds like an obvious thing, but so many people don’t realize how critical that is. We translators know it all too well.

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Spanish translations: What is going on with all the bargaining??

7/18/2013 by Susana Schultz

It seems that these days some inexperienced Spanish translations buyers are handling buying translations like they would buying a car, or even worse. It is all about who gives them the lowest price and sometimes those prices are so ridiculously low that I wonder what kind of quality they are really getting.

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Just one word can ruin a Spanish translation (and your reputation!)

7/15/2013 by Susana Schultz

We live in a world, where everyone is in a hurry. We live in a translation world where most translators use translation memories because, they say, it’s efficient and allows them to produce more work in less time, hence allowing them to make a little more money.

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Our Spanish translation team

7/11/2013 by Susana Schultz

Strictly Spanish translators are wonderful people, if I may say so myself. Not only are they professional Spanish translators with years of college in translation, they also have a wealth of experience in a range of subjects, they are attentive to detail, and they love what they do.

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The Spanish Translation Review Process

8/23/2012 by Lon Schultz

Our clients sometimes have translations that we have completed for them reviewed by a review committee, another professional translator, or by one of their Spanish speaking employees. We always welcome this process - it shows our clients' commitment to the best possible quality.

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Boutique translation companies: The power of partnership

6/11/2012 by Susana Schultz

Blog 4 of a series of 4

For our final entry in this series, I want to talk about our slogan, “the power of partnership.”

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Boutique translation companies vs. mass-producing companies

4/26/2012 by Susana Schultz

Blog 3 of a series of 4

Mass-producing translation agencies work with hundreds and hundreds of translators. Their translator pool is always changing, shrinking and expanding according to the availability of translators. Working with so many translators affects quality. Why?

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Boutique translation companies or mass-producing translation agencies

3/20/2012 by Susana Schultz

Blog 2 of a series of 4

Again, I will preface this blog by saying that Strictly Spanish LLC is a boutique Spanish translation company. It means that we are very specialized in what we do—we only work on English-to-Spanish translations and Spanish-to-English translations and we don’t mass produce.

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Boutique translation companies or mass-producing translation agencies . . . Which one is right for you?

2/21/2012 by Susana Schultz

Blog 1 of a series of 4

Let me preface this blog by saying that Strictly Spanish LLC is a boutique Spanish translation company. What does it mean?

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