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On 02/11/14 22:03, Tom Davies wrote:

I've often wondered if they might be "good enough" to get rough translations done well enough for 
humans to proof-read and polish?  

If you've read the manuals for products that are made in China, to be
sold in North America, you've seen how good machine translation is.

just "good enough" to use alongside the human translators own skill and knowledge, perhaps to get 
some inspiration? 

As an author, the most useful function of machine translation, is to
round trip text through three or four languages. If the resulting output
retains the message that was intended, albeit not the vocabulary, then
the writing is "good".

Perhaps better for people who are only just starting to translate things?

For quick and dirty work, where the user won't ascribe the quality of
the translation to whatever is being described, machine translation is a
good starting point.

Does either of those ideas have any validity? 

Professional translators prefer to translate material into their native
language, because it provides for better (qualitatively speaking) accuracy.


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