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Machine Translation or Legal: Applications, Considerations and Hurdles
With business continuing to expand globally and ree translation solutions such as Google Translateand Yahoo! Babelsh emerging, interest in machine translation (MT) is growing. When MT isimplemented properly it has the potential to increase human translation productivity in applicationssuch as data mining large documents or litigation and e-discovery, reducing costs and increasingproductivity. However, i approached without proper care the results can be rustrating and useless,and is thereore not surprising that many corporations and law rms alike are still puzzled as towhen to use machine translation, i it’s aordable and what level o quality to expect. Here we willexamine some o the pros and cons o machine translation and situations or use.
What is Machine Translation and how does it work?
Machine Translation (MT) is the process by which computer sotware is used to translate text romone natural language to another. In order or any translation, human or machine, to be successul,the meaning o the text in the original source language must be ully restored in the target language.
Although this sounds straightorward, it is actually much more complex as translation is not simplyword-or-word substitution. The machine must interpret and analyze all the eatures o a textincluding grammar, semantics, syntax and culture in order to eectively convey the meaning andintention o the text as a whole.
Machine Translation Methods
Machine Modern machine translation solutions such as those rom Microsot, IBM, Google and Yahoouse three methods to achieve eective comprehension in their output. These three methods aredescribed below:
This was the rst eective strategy developed or MT. Rule based MT relies on a collection orules or grammar, lexicons and subject specic terminology that are applied automatically bythe application in real time. Rule based MT can deliver high quality output in relative terms butcan be prohibitive because o high upront investment costs that make it most suitable or largescale high quality content needs.
Statistical MT generates translations using statistical methods that match commonly usedphrases and translations together, and thereore relies heavily on existing multilingual content.The source content being used to derive the ‘statistical matches’ has a massive eect on theoutput quality o statistical MT. Where enough subject relevant data can be used, the output isoten o good quality and can even fow more naturally in line with human translations. Statisticalsolutions can also be deployed ar quicker and with lower investment costs. However, i thecontent used or training is not subject specic, translations can be essentially useless in somecases. Google Translate and Bing are both examples o statistical MT. Because o their relativelyeasy set up, statistical MT solutions can be cost eectively applied to situations such as datamining or any large body o text where similar pre-existing content can be ound and output valueis primarily or understanding and speed o inormation retrieval.