A Basque-to-Spanish translation is the perfect example of how a machine translation is a source of errors, ambiguities, and imperfections. A particularly complex language like Basque shows us why you need to rely on native translators for any Basque translation services, now or in the future. We’ll explain why.
Translation from Basque to Spanish: risks of automatic translation
Undoubtedly, free and paid machine translators that can translate a text in a few seconds are extremely useful. They can be used, for example, if we want to quickly read an article or are unsure about a few specific words. But do you really think they can help you achieve a professional translation? Here’s a perfect example to understand this mistake.
What happens with Basque? Of course, machine translators can be used for this language as well. So, at first, we could say that a translation from one language into another can be performed with relative ease. However, this is not always the case. We’ll explain the reasons why.
The problems with machine translation
Although problems can be seen with every language, they may be more significant in less-spoken languages like Basque. Let’s take English, for example. There are numerous machine translators that can translate a text from one language to another with varying degrees of success. However, the following mistakes can occur in all of them:
- Ambiguity in expressions. There may be idioms that will be lost during the process. Also, the intended meaning of the text may not be captured in some places due to a lack of context.
- Difficulty in maintaining tone. If it’s a formal or conversational text, or if it contains particular slang, machine translators don’t always detect these differences well. There could be expressions, for example, that are currently popular that a machine translator hasn’t learned yet.
- Inaccuracies may occur. Both translating a word by itself (for example, when it’s not used for its primary meaning or when it is used metaphorically), and translating a sentence or portion of a text can produce an error. Aspects like irony and humor are very difficult to reflect.
If these can occur with the most widely spoken language in the world, they would likely occur in those less-spoken languages as well. It would also be more noticeable, since not all machine translators are of the same quality.
In these cases, the answer is clear. If you want to have a high-quality text, you cannot use this type of resource, which has a logical role in daily aspects, but not when it comes to more serious or professional texts.
What do native translators offer?
The professionalism of a native translator is precisely what is needed to solve and work around the problems mentioned previously. How do they achieve this? Let’s take a look.
- They offer a deep understanding of both languages. This does not mean only knowing words in both languages. The construction of a sentence or the sentence structure is perfectly reflected in the translation. In Basque, for example, the subject is usually placed at the end of a sentence. It’s a characteristic of the language that a professional translator can perfectly capture, to incorporate it as naturally as possible in the translation.
- They properly maintain the tone. As you may know, sometimes we use more formal language, yet other times, we use more friendly language, including slang or other types of colloquial expressions. So, the translator needs to be familiar with these, as they are often not captured correctly in machine translators. Therefore, with professionals, it’s a guarantee that every nuance within the text of one language will be transferred seamlessly into the other.
- There are some documents that a machine translator simply cannot be used for. Consider, for example, legal documents or administrative paperwork. In such cases (building a business, for example, amongst others), the future translation should not be performed by a machine. This will require a competent professional.
- They are especially valuable with languages of different origin. Consider a Spanish-to-Italian translation. Perhaps you could get by with a machine translator since, after all, the structures of both languages are very similar. However, when it is a language as unique as Basque, resorting to these resources is a mistake.
In short, doing a Basque-to-Spanish translation can be complicated. That’s why you should rely on professionals for such work. At blarlo, you can find high-quality translators that will help you with your texts. Contact us.