Why does actup.org depend so much on translation?
Language differences no longer need to be a barrier to knowledge.
Perspectives are sourced directly from more than 60 countries which requires accessing up to 50 languages all in order to highlight our smaller world as well as our larger challenges. In the past year, actup.org has been visited from over 200 countries.
What are some of the challenges of translation?
Have you heard of the phrase, “lost in translation”?
Initially, all content on actup.org is translated through a method known as machine translation. Machine translation is a part of the computational linguistics field. Given enough data, machine translation programs often work well enough for a native speaker of one language to get the approximate meaning of what is written by the other native speaker.
Some of the greatest challenges are handling differences in linguistic typology, translation of idioms, and the isolation of anomalies between the source language and the target language.
Why do I see a “he” when it should be a “she” or “transsexual” instead of a more accurate or sensitive term or similar, seemingly blatant, errors?
This is one of the most difficult problems challenging machine translation.
This is both a result of cultural differences, particularly in describing a person’s sexuality or identity or expression, but errors are also a result of limitations of machine translation. Current machine systems translate sentences in isolation, losing valuable contextual information from previously translated sentences. One important type of contextual information concerns who or what a coreferring pronoun corefers to (i.e., its antecedent). Languages differ signiﬁcantly in how they achieve coreference, and awareness of antecedents is important in choosing the correct pronoun. Disregarding a pronoun’s antecedent in translation can lead to inappropriate coreferring forms in the target text, seriously degrading a reader’s ability to understand it. In fact, most machine translations randomly seemingly rotate such pronouns as “she” or “he”.
What are some ways to address these challenges?
Humans are the best translators.
Improved output quality can be achieved by human intervention. For this reason, actup.org offers the ability to manually edit any translation appearing on actup.org. More information follows immediately below.
How can I help improve a translation?
Generally, you do not have to do anything to use translation on actup.org. However, if you wish, you may become more involved and support the community by manually editing a machine translated phrase. All assistance is welcomed.
What does “Edit Translation” mean?
Selecting this option (it appears near the top of every page on actup.org) will allow you the ability to manually translate any phrase.
This option only functions on content that is different from your selected language. If, for example, you are now reading in Dutch and the content is in Dutch then “Edit Translations” will not operate.
- Step 1: Click “Edit Translations“
After a moment of processing, every phrase that appears on actup.org will have a icon next to it. If you see a green icon then that phrase has already been reviewed by a human.
- Step 2: Click the icon next to the phrase you wish to correct.
The following popup will appear:
- Step 3: Type a more accurate translation in the “Translate to” field located on the lower half of the popup.
There are many tools to assist you, including additional lookup tools from Google and Bing .
Quickly move from phrase to phrase by clicking arrow icons .
- Step 4: Click on checkmark icon to save your translation. You are done! And thank you.
Your modified translation will immediate appear on actup.org. All human-verified phrases will have a green icon.
What do the color bars mean?
Orange – Translation has been performed by machine translation only.
Green – Translation has additionally been reviewed by at least one human.
Red – In case of error, and no translation has occurred.
Translation does not work
actup.org is a project in beta. Translation is central to the operation of actup.org and therefore considerable effort is expended exploring and adopting the most advanced translation technologies. As a result, some translations that worked during one phase of technology implementation may not fully function with today’s implementation.
However, there is workaround. If you view a page on actup.org that is not translating properly go to Google Translate and copy/paste, or drag and drop, the actup.org URL that you wish to translate.