Translator tools: CAT Tools, Translation Memory, and Machine Translations

(Last Updated On: April 27, 2015)

Translator tools

Technology has provided ample ways to make the lives of humans easier. This goes for translators as well. With the advent of software designed for translation purposes, a translator can now greatly improve the precision of their translations using translator tools. Listed below are some of the ways modern technology is improving the translation process.

CAT Tools

CAT tools or computer aided translation tools, help translators save and organize their translations into what is known as translation memory or TM. Once the translated information is saved, it can then be retrieved and used again. These translator tools work by breaking texts into fragments that contain both the source and target text. Seeing the original and target text side-by-side facilitates the translation process. Translated and original texts are saved together in translation units or TUs. Storing the original and translated texts together ensures that it is easy to find material that needs further translation or revision.

Several top-of-the-line CAT tools offer what is called controlled machine translation, or MT. The combination of CAT and MT significantly improves the quality of translations by providing translators with access to specialized dictionaries that contain accurate terminology and usage examples. Translator tools offer a way to produce superior, high-quality translations.

Language Search Engines

Software options now exist that make it possible for Translators to search an extensive database of translation memories. Similar to Internet search engines, language search engines help translators to access prior translations, simply by entering key words and phrases. Language search engines return more information than searches conducted with translation memory software.

Alignment Software

Another powerful software tool for translators is an alignment program. The alignment programs pair together matching target and source material sections and add the matched material to translation memory databases. Most of these software programs allow for the correction of inappropriately paired sections. Once the corrected memory file is created, it can be added to a translation memory program where it can be accessed again during subsequent translations.

Terminology Management Software

This software allows translators to search terminology databases in order to ensure that terminology is being correctly translated. Search results are displayed in a dialog box or with the use of hotkeys. Depending on the type of software being used, hotkeys can also be used to create terminology pairs during the actual translation process. The higher – end software allows translators to check if certain terminology is used correctly and consistently throughout the entire translated document. Translator tools do not translate on their own, such tools only aid translators in their work.

ISO Translations is a translation services company offering software localization and Language services .