Tips for Making Better Translations
Because human language is often ambiguous,
no machine translation system in the world can produce translations
as accurate as a well trained, professional translator, however,
there are a few simple things that you can do to help produce
more consistent, intelligible and accurate translations when
using a machine translation system such as Delta Translator:
Write Carefully and Be Succinct
Machine translation systems such as
Delta Translator are best at translating commonly used language.
It is best to use short, simple and clearly worded declarative
sentences (no longer than 10 to 20 words). They produce the
Avoid sentences with numerous clauses (multiple ideas/phrases).
By all means, avoid run-on sentences. If a sentence contains
multiple ideas or thoughts, break them into a single sentence
per idea or thought
Avoid using clichés, slang terms, idiomatic and colloquial
expressions as well as overly complex words.
If the text written by someone else, see if minor editing may
help make the text clearer and, thereby, produce a better translation.
Avoid Being Vague
Take into account the literal meaning
of words and try to use the literal meaning whenever possible.
It may have been a "great"movie but in most languages
of the world "great" literally translates as "big"
Try to avoid words that may have more than a single meaning
and translation, for example, use "airplane" instead
of "plane", "wonderful" instead of "great",
"weapons" instead of "arms", "movie"
instead of "film", etc.
Words ending with the suffix "ing" can often be ambiguous,
for example "playing", which can be a noun, an adjective
or a gerund. Whenever possible, use an alternative.
Make sure that the text to be translated does not contain spelling
errors. Misspelled words will not be recognized and, therefore,
not translated. For Portuguese text, this includes diacriticals
or accented characters. For example, the Portuguese word você
(with the diacritical over the "ê") would not
be recognized by any machine translator if spelled as "voce"
(without the correct diacritical). See typing diacriticals for
information about setting up your Windows system to use the
US International keyboard driver. It will allow you to type
all diacriticals or accented characters used in Portuguese.
Spell check your text before translating
by using your word processor's spell checker or, after opening
the text in Delta Translator, use its Portuguese or English
Check the grammar. If the text is in Portuguese, you can use
Delta Translator's Grammar Checker to search for errors. If
the text is English, you can use the grammar checker of your
English word processing program.
Avoid Using Special Characters
Special characters or symbols such as ±, œ, ‰,
etc., can often cause confusion for any translation program.
When possible, avoid using them.
Avoid Abbreviations and Acronyms
When possible, avoid using abbreviations and acronyms. For example,
many Brazilians use the abbreviation "vc" for "você"
while many Americans commonly use acronyms such as "ASAP",
"FYI", "TGIF", "ATTN", "ATM",
etc.. If you absolutely must use them, maintain consistency
throughout the text.
Avoid Punctuation Errors
While some punctuation may be a matter of personal preference,
it is important that the punctuation of the text to be as "standard"
as possible. The most important thing to ensure is that every
sentence is ended with a period or question mark (a full stop).
This is because translation programs such as Delta Translator
verify all sentences before beginning translation.
There is some punctuation (e.g. parentheses,
hyphens, dashes, colons, semi-colons, etc.) that, depending
on the way they are used, can wreak havoc with any translation
program. Wherever possible, avoid using them.
Do Not Omit Words
In certain English constructions, words such as "that,
which, who", etc. are implied and, consequently, often
omitted. For example, "I know that he went yesterday"
often becomes "I know he went yesterday." Do not omit
these words because they are normally required in Portuguese
In some English constructions, the article
"the" is also often omitted, for example, "House
and Senate". Always use the article "the" as
in "the House and the Senate".
Regularly Add New Words and Phrases
to the Program's Database
Some claim that there are over 500,000 commonly used English
words, not counting those words and phrases used in specialized
technical, medical, legal, engineering, electronics, etc., language.
No translation program in the world
contains every word in use or every possible translation of
every word ever used in any context. When Delta Translator reports
a word not found, it is fast and easy to add the word and any
number of translations. The more you add to and build the language
database, the better the results of all your translations will