But has all of the work done by computer linguistics in recent decades been for nothing? Of course not! Machine systems have reached a level of maturity that enables them to produce very decent translations in a short amount of time. And there are certain areas where time means more than quality. And by the way, how do we define “quality”?
The amount of text that a human translator can churn out during a day can be done by a computer in less than five seconds. This is the main reason why machines, and not people, prepare tsunami warnings. And that is the way it should be!
The fact that the good old specialist translation has gotten lost somewhat in the crowd in recent years certainly has something to do with a classical paradox: The standard for a good translation is that you never realize that you are reading a translation. This has always been the case.
Thanks to the increasing professionalization of some industry members, it has become possible to supply consistently high quality. As a result, this formerly prominent service has now been added to a service package that produces significantly more added value.
To put it simply: Blood, sweat and tears still flow into the perfect translation. But the service portfolio of modern translation companies has become increasingly complicated. Today’s focus is no longer placed on specialty translations as an individual service. Instead, the business involves complete service packages like transcreation, international SEO, audio/video localization. But their DNA is still derived from the good, old specialty translations.