Garblog's Pages

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Lost in Automatic Translation: Do you have what it takes to be a clamp boss?| Elliott Hurwitt

In a parenthetical "full disclosure" statement, Hurwitt writes:
All quoted passages in this article are from actual machine-translated press releases. Really.
I'm not sure what type of automatic machine (or software) is translating these documents--making all those reported errors and ridiculous statements. Hurwitt doesn't explain. Is it Word's spell and grammar checker? Some other add-on grammar and style checker? An online translation tool for converting Spanish to English? Is it some smartphone app?

But whatever the tool is, the individual, organization, agency or business using it has a responsibility to himself, herself and itself -- as well as to owners, customers, donors and other readers -- to check the accuracy and clarity of the tool.

If an individual, organization, agency or business is unwilling or unable to check the quality of documents produced or edited by these writing tools, that individual, organization, agency or business deserves to fail.

Good riddance. I pity only the victims -- the customers, clients, members, donors, other employees, other readers and users -- for suffering the incompetence of the publisher. May they easily find an alternative, intelligent, thoughtful publisher of the information they need.

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