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Transit NXT: from CAT tool to ATA

Advanced Translation Assistant

Transit NXT: from CAT tool to ATA

From CAT tool to ATA: developing a Computer Assisted Translation tool into an Advanced Translation Assistant.

Transit NXT's Advanced Translation Assistant

In our tooltip Checking for translation variants and source language variants, we explained a feature of Transit's SP9 that helps you to detect and eliminate variants in the target language and also detect translation errors by checking for source language variants.

With Build 1632, developers added a new quality assurance feature that helps to avoid translation errors in the first place. The feature is as simple as it is ingenious but surprisingly, it has gone largely unnoticed. 

Simple because it is a plain text message, ingenious because the new feature helps to avoid translation errors that stem from minor differences in the source segment. This type of error is one of the most common when using translation memory systems. For that reason, and because of their potentially disastrous consequences, they are one of the biggest issues in relation to translation memory usage.

I stumbled upon this new feature during a translation and when the message popped up, it immediately made me think of the Lane Keeping Assist Systems that modern cars are now equipped with as standard. "Wow, my CAT tool is becoming an Advanced Translation Assistant by helping me to not lose track", I thought.

And this is how it works: 

Advanced Translator Assistant


When you have been translating a somewhat repetitive text with numerous high-range fuzzy matches for a while, it is quite common for your mind to wander and for you to begin to accept fuzzy match proposals from the translation memory without paying full attention. It is therefore easy for "right" to be translated as "left" (see the example) or "On" as "Off", etc. It is not hard to imagine how such translation errors can have disastrous consequences, just one incorrect word in an instruction manual or in on-screen instructions can result in a machine or device being used incorrectly, potentially leading to serious damage.

With Transit's new Advanced Translator Assistant enabled, such errors are much less likely to happen. A small code change for a developer, but a huge step for CAT tool users.

The Transit development team is now working on the "Translator Drowsiness Detection System" (TDDS) and the "Have a Coffee Break" dialogue messages :) We will keep you posted!


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