Translation Services for the AI sector

"Translation is one of the few human activities in which the impossible occurs by principle. - Mariano Antolín Rato

Translators have always been credited for making the almost impossible task of accurate translation that best matches the original meaning, possible. However in recent years, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning based computers, software and algorithms are trying to take over this effort, and have shown steady improvement in the quality of translation.

The upside of this trend is that AI and ML based translation cut down the time and effort taken to translate hundreds or thousands of documents in a short period of time, at a fraction of the cost. This is being applied in sectors such as the legal where attorneys or their paralegals can vet legal contracts and build cases much faster than before.

However, as everybody understands, language translation is more art than science. The nuances of grammar and sentence construct can change subtly with change in context and increased creativity of the writer. Since AI and ML based translations are phrase-based where a sentence is broken down into phrases and then matched with thousands of such phrases in a dictionary, the output is never accurate. While AI and ML based translations are ‘affordable’, they are yet to reach the level of accuracy that human translators can provide.

That is why; the final translated output from AI and ML based translators must be still vetted by human editors and proofreaders who must make the content as accurate as possible. Accordingly, the demand for language editors and proofreaders has increased over the years, around the world. The combination of AL&ML based translation in Phase 1 and a human editor in Phase 2 can make future translations both ‘accurate’ and ‘affordable’. As more and more small and medium businesses around the world go global, this approach will be the norm, thereby creating a huge demand and market for human, language editors and proofreaders.

So how will this demand be met? The translation market is unorganized, being largely comprised of freelance translators (almost 85-90%) with organized and specialist translation companies being a much smaller part of the pie. Companies such as iTransmaster in India are specialists whose services are being used by all sizes of business organizations for translating, editing and proofreading content, whether generated by a human or a machine.

So which is a better option for a business organization- freelancers or translation agencies?

Why a Translation agency?

  • Language proficiency: Translation agencies invest in hiring and training the best-of-the-best translators, so this way; you get consistently high-quality translation over the years.
  • Domain proficiency: Marketing, legal, accounting, healthcare all have their own unique documentation with unique sentence constructs. Translation agencies generally engage people with the relevant domain experience so the context is captured more accurately than any generic translator can.
  • Mature processes: Most of these agencies have established workflows and documented processes to handle larger volumes of even complex translations to be turned around quickly.
  • Quality focus: Quality of translation both in terms of accuracy and creative expression is where an agency can outperform freelancers 9 out of 10 times. These agencies also have established QA and QC checks to maintain the quality day after day.
  • Multiple languages: No single freelancer can provide multi-lingual translations which is what an agency can do with ease. This is invaluable for businesses that are expanding geographic reach.
  • Data confidentiality: The documents that must be translated may contain highly confidential and sensitive information. Translation agencies are professional and follow strict norms and air-tight security while sharing and translating such data.

It’s a foregone conclusion that Translation companies are any day a better option than freelance translators. Such agencies will only proliferate with time, but not all agencies are created equal. So do your research and due diligence before hiring the best-fit translation agency.