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IETLS; Machine Translation Vs Human Translation


efish 1 / 1  
Mar 24, 2013   #1
Hi all

Could someone please have a look at my essay? I will take the test in about 3 month from now and would be glad to have a feedback. It would be great if someone could make a band score estimation.

IELTS Writing Task 2: Essay

Machine translation (MT) is slower and less accurate than human translation and there is no immediate or predictable likelihood of machines taking over this role from humans.

Do you agree or disagree?

Write at least 250 words.

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Machine translation nowadays might not be as accurate as human translation, but the MT has made a huge step forward in the past years. I strongly disagree to the statement, that documents will not be translated by machines soon.

Firstly, if you compare a machine translated document from the late 90s to a document translated today, you will see that the algorithms have been refined and further developed. A case in point are phrasal verbs which couldn't be translated reliably a decade ago. Todays' algorithms can figure out the nature of a word and translate it correctly. This was made possible by large computer servers and the increased computational power integrated in a modern microcontroller.

Secondly, the speed of translation has increased drastically in the past few years, so that lenghty waiting times are not an issue anymore. For example, the combination of smart phones with high resolution photo cameras and handwriting recognition open new possibiliets. It makes it possible to take a picture of a hand written letter, send it wirelessly to a MT service and have it translated within seconds.

A last point is that it has always been difficult to predict the future. We do not know what new technology will come up in five or ten years from now. This has been shown many times in the history of human beings.

To sum it up, I believe, with the increased computational power and advanced algorithms it will soon be possible to translate large documents within a reasonable time. With more sophisticated technology, MT will serve us as a tool which we use on a daily basis.

(267 words)
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StressedWriter 1 / 6 2  
Mar 24, 2013   #2
Well, your essay is way too short. It'd be nice if you could improve more on your points, arguments, etc. It'd also be nice if you checked your grammar. However you generally have nice sentence formations and ideas. (Also try not to start off paragraphs with 'firstly' 'secondly' etc)

Machine translation nowadays might not be as accurate as human translation, but the MT has made a huge step forward in the past years. I strongly disagree to the statement, that documents will not be translated by machines soon.

Readers who do not know about this topic well would be slightly confused (ex: me). By machine translation I suppose you're talking about google translate or babelfish and such. Explain more stuff so that readers don't get confused. Also, abbreviations are not allowed in professional essays. Put the actual meaning in the place of MT. (i don't know what it is... lol) You could work more on your introduction to have a more engaging beginning sentence. (Start out generally and go to specifics) I like your thesis statement, but the comma in the middle should be omitted (incorrect grammar).

Firstly, if you compare a machine translated document from the late 90s to a document translated today, you will see that the algorithms have been refined and further developed. A case in point are phrasal verbs which couldn't be translated reliably a decade ago. Todays' algorithms can figure out the nature of a word and translate it correctly. This was made possible by large computer servers and the increased computational power integrated in a modern microcontroller.

I like your statements and the way you phrase your thoughts (that is done very well). But it would help if you made the paragraph more elaborate and longer by putting more commentary. It also helps to cite things and put in actual examples. A person reading this would not find this paragraph very reliable as you are basing this whole paragraph off your thoughts and views.

Secondly, the speed of translation has increased drastically in the past few years, so that lenghty waiting times are not an issue anymore. For example, the combination of smart phones with high resolution photo cameras and handwriting recognition open new possibiliets. It makes it possible to take a picture of a hand written letter, send it wirelessly to a MT service and have it translated within seconds.

(For (an) example) (high-resolution) (possibilities) (handwritten[instead of hand_written]) (what is MT???)
Mostly the same thing I wrote on the paragraph earlier. Also it would help if you would write precisely... As in, how much did the speed of translation increase? What do you mean by saying 'drastically increased'? List examples... etc.

A last point is that it has always been difficult to predict the future. We do not know what new technology will come up in five or ten years from now. This has been shown many times in the history of human beings.
To sum it up, I believe, with the increased computational power and advanced algorithms it will soon be possible to translate large documents within a reasonable time. With more sophisticated technology, MT will serve us as a tool which we use on a daily basis.

I like your final paragraph a lot. If you just put in one or two examples it would look great. I'm not really sure who said this, but a famous guy long time ago (sorry this is not very helpful... but if you research a bit by yourself I'm sure you would find out who he is) stated that mankind will never be able to go out to space. So just state specific examples.

In your conclusion, omitt the comma after "I believe". I like your conclusion a lot and I think it's fine without adding too much stuff.

Hope I helped :) :) :)
OP efish 1 / 1  
Mar 25, 2013   #3
First of all: Thank you very much for your inputs!

Well, your essay is way too short.

In the task it is written I should write at least 250 words..I wrote 267 words, I think that is enough. Generally in IELTS exams you should write between 250 and 300 words, it's actually not possible to write a lot more since you only have 40 minutes time.

what is MT???

I used this term because it is also used in the task. Of course I wouldn't use it if it was not already written there.

high-resolution, handwriting recognition

hmm...thought terms like these are commonly known, next time I will elaborate a little bit more on that.

Hope I helped :) :) :)

you did, thanks!
omid_sarox 1 / 6 1  
Mar 25, 2013   #4
I have done the TOEFL test and I am fairly familiar with how your essay should look like. At first try to write as much as you can. The minimum they want is 300 words, but it's best if you write at least 50 words more.

Use words and phrases like "furthermore, on the other hand, similarly, consequently" to connect your sentences. they'll like it.
You have some grammar mistakes and I guess you got comment on them. try to minimize them. If you are unsure about the correct way of writing a phrase, don't risk it and change your sentence!

Use more complex grammar like "the more, the better, not to mention that, needless to say, there is no doubt"
Again, they ask you for at least 300 words not 250. Try to write more than that.

Good luck
dumi 1 / 6,928 1592  
Mar 25, 2013   #5
Readers who do not know about this topic well would be slightly confused (ex: me).

.... StressedWriter has a point. You are expected to introduce your topic to the reader in the introduction. Since the term " machine translation" sounds a little technical you could have introduced it,

I strongly disagree towith the statement that documents will not be translated by machines soon.

.... "agree with" & before the word "that" there is no comma.

Firstly, if you compare a machine translated document from the late 90s to a document translated today, you will see that the algorithms have been refined and further developed.

.... your essay is not about a comparison of machine translation today with what it was earlier. So, here you sound as if going out of topic. Always keep an alignment with the topic.


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