To guarantee accuracy, the translation process has three critical steps:
- Draft or initial translation using a subject-specialized, professionally trained translator of each target language;
- Editing (Revising) using a second subject-specialized, professionally trained translator of each target language to review the draft; and
- Proofreading the file for spelling, punctuation, grammar and formatting.
When a text has many repetitions or tight deadlines, Auerbach International often uses MT for Step 1 with human translators for the critical Steps 2 and 3. This combination of machines and people maximizes accuracy and delivers quality quickly.
But MT can still make comical and critical mistakes, and does not work well with complex sentence structures and many Asian languages. In these cases, we use a professional, human translator for the draft (Step 1) and another professional translator (or two) to edit and proofread the text (Steps 2 and 3).
Getting language nuances, expressions and colloquialisms right is also challenging for MT.
Technology usually also cannot acculturate. For example, for an interior design firm that “creates soothing office spaces”, we rewrote the text for the Arabic translation to say that it “makes soothing office spaces.” That’s because for devout Muslims, only God can create and not acculturating would doom the client’s promotion.
When technology reaches its limits, we always use human professionals.