Translation Memories are perhaps the most important and vital technology advancement in the translation industry. They allow us to perform our jobs faster, more accurately, with higher consistency and lower costs than ever before. TMs however, are NOT that same thing as machine translation, and take significant practice and skill to use effectively.
At PLG we utilize the commercial software Trados, which is the leading TM program used to store previously completed translations and assist our translators in current projects. As our professional translators work, they enter their translations into a stored database built just for your company. When future material comes up that is similar to something that was previously translated, the software suggests the “memorized” translation to the translator. The translator then reviews the translation, makes any adjustments necessary, and saves the updated translation to the memory once again. This memory applies to content that is repeated not just within a given document, but across documents and projects.
Over time as we work with a client the translation memory grows larger, and our translators have more material to reference. This allows us to provide more accurate, consistent translations both faster and less costly. Two good examples are the TMs we have built for our customers at Walmart and HoMedics in the past years. The TMs combined have over 3 million translation pairs of sentences between a source language and the target!