Friday, October 1, 2010


So I tried Systran on a new potential project in German and Italian (SOPs from the same company in both languages, for translation to English). I figured after the corporate charter, with its quite passable results, I'd try Systran on these as well.


Here's just the first sentence of the German:

The available SOP serves for the Sicherstellung of the requirements and conditions, which must fulfill the suppliers, so that them for the supply of a supplier sample to become certified to be able.

You can't edit that. All you can do is retranslate it - either directly from the German or from this intermediate not-German not-English near-gibberish. So maybe the corporate charter was a fluke, or maybe Systran performs better on French than on German (or Italian - the results were equally unreadable on my Italian sample). Either way, my initial hopes for being able to use Systran are pretty much shot. This does not speed me up, and it's clear that careful glossary work, while it might help a little, wouldn't be enough - Systran doesn't actually appear to understand or use syntax.

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