You are currently viewing AI Translation: A Review the DELTA-AI course

In March 2024 I took LION Translation Academy’s Delivering Excellence in the Age of AI (DELTA-AI). I liked the sound of this four-week course because, although I had already attended several webinars on the subject of AI translation, I felt I needed to learn more so that I could use AI to benefit my clients.


Computer-Assisted Translation

In week one, we looked at various Computer-Assisted Translation (CAT) tools, both file-based and cloud-based. We talked about what makes a good CAT tool, covering issues such as features, user-friendliness and stability. The issue of confidentiality when using CAT tools was also discussed. Selecting a tool and settings that prevent the sharing of your translation memory is crucial.


Machine Translation

In week two the discussion moved on to neural machine translation (NMT) tools. We analysed various tools using criteria such as whether these tools are language and/or domain-specific, produce idiomatic translations, can be trained to copy your writing style and can be adapted for different clients. We were also provided with a list of tools to aid us in administrative tasks and enhance our work environment.

Delivering Excellence in the Age of AI (DELTA-AI) certificate

AI for Translators

Week three focused on using various AI tools to carry out our work more effectively. The idea of using tools to pre-translate texts was discussed. But we quickly concluded that AI is best suited to non-translation tasks including doing research, getting inspiration when translating, formatting, creating free captions and transcriptions, drafting marketing copy and social media posts, and coming up with business development ideas. But, in keeping with this course’s theme of looking at the disadvantages as well as the advantages of different tools, it was pointed out that generative AI does have a carbon footprint. Therefore, such tools should be used sparingly.


AI for Translation Clients

Week four concluded the course by outlining how we can explain what using AI entails to translation clients. While using AI might lead to clients receiving their texts faster, it cannot ensure quality, consistency, and coherence. Furthermore, it cannot understand the text being translated or point out errors in the original text. The issue of privacy with certain tools is also a disadvantage that all clients should be made aware of. Human translators, on the other hand, minimize risks by ensuring the accuracy of any information provided in the translation. They also add personality to a text and make it sound more authentic. Naturally, the contentious subject of whether using AI should affect our rates came up. We concluded that just because we, like many other professions, are using new tools to carry out tasks, this doesn’t mean our work is any less important or valuable.


Final thoughts

I would certainly recommend DELTA-AI to translators who are unsure about how to use AI and how it will impact their careers. As a result of this course, I feel more confident about deciding whether or not to use certain tools, how to choose the right tool for the job and how to explain the role of AI in the translation process to clients.

If you’re a translation buyer who is unsure about the translation process in the age of AI, discussing your project with a professional translator will allay your fears.

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