Translation memory, commonly mentioned to as ‘TM’, is a database that stores previously interpreted text. Most commonly utilized in conjunction with computer assisted translation (CAT) tools, much as Trados or DejàVu, it is utilised during the translation process to assist with fresh akin translation content

Nowadays, a vast amount of translators and translation agencies use CAT tools and TMs as part of their daily work. Translation agencies are able to develop client-specific translation memories in order to produce consistent and cost-effective translations, even when different individual translators are used

A translation memory consists of text segments (paragraphs or sentences, but not single words) in a source language and their translations into one or more target languages. Together, these pairs of segments form so-called translation units

Although TMs can be employed in a variety of translation scenarios, they are at their most beneficial when used with highly repetitive texts. They are also particularly helpful when translating newer versions of previously translated documents. In this situation only fresh content would necessitate to be interpreted as the TM will key out previously interpreted content. This can stand for an appreciable time and cost salvaging as well as helping in the production of accordant translations

Translation memories are extremely advantageous in numerous ways:

TMs help to ensure consistency through the presentation of previously translated content. This is particularly important if a number of translators work for the same client or on the same project over time

TMs allow translators to speed up the translation process. When applicable data is in a translation memory, the translator is presented with previously translated segments, so they do not need to be translated again. Translation memories also identify partial content matches

TMs help to reduce the cost of long-term translation projects, or regular translation of similar content. Once content has been interpreted, reiterate content necessitate never be interpreted again – even if it is in an antithetic document at an antithetic time with an antithetic translator

Translation memories may not be suitable for text of a non-repetitive nature. Although in principle they can be utilized as an aid to any type of translation, in some cases their use should be debarred. It is accomplishable that in some circumstances use of translation memory could turn a translation into an automatonlike process, altering the style, flow and creativity of a text

This article only scratches the surface on the benefits, pitfalls and application of translation memory. However, it is an extremely muscular tool that delivers perceptible benefits to the client, translator and translation agency. To observe how translation memory can benefit your organisation or to happen out more about translation services, get in touch with Sure Languages at

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