The internet is a wonderful thing. It can open doors for you or take you halfway across the world. It can teach you almost everything you want to know about anything. and help you communicate with people through a screen as you would in person. The only problem, apart from connection issues or technical difficulties, is language barriers. Luckily, to translate an article or message, you don’t have to go to a licensed translator anymore.
There are many quick and easy ways to translate everything you need, right from your PC. You can choose from websites to browser add-ons, to programs. You can choose to pay or can even translate for free! It’s all about knowing what works best for you. If you want to get some translating done, or you want to amp up your software game, here are some tips and tricks on how to translate more efficiently.
Old Reliable: Google Translate
It’s difficult to think of translating anything today without Google translate. When it comes to accessible and fast translation options, Google translate has gained a reputation for being one of the best. Especially when combined with additional helpful software, it is easy to use and is perfect for the average person looking to check up a word, website, or text. When it comes to words, Google translate acts as your own personal dictionary. It gives you the most used translations of the word.
With texts, it can translate and piece together the meaning of sentences and phrases with ease. The only downside is, you have a limit of 5000 words when you use the website and longer translations can get a little clunky. But other than that, it’s a perfectly serviceable and efficient way to get your message across or to understand a foreign language.
Using Software to Speed up the Process
Google translate is great, but if you need to translate large texts for work, for example, you’ll need something a bit stronger. Translating is one thing, but if you want to speed up the process, you might want to consider adding CAT tools to your arsenal. Buying or downloading a translation-aiding program can make the entire translation process simpler.
CAT tools (or computer-aided translation) sound like they do manual translation, but they do something even better. CAT tools are programs designed to streamline translating. They form databases and provide easy access to previous translations. You can think of these tools as having all your dictionaries, documents, and notes all conveniently located digitally within your translations. The downsides would be taking up space on your device and losing all your data unless you backup.
Using Cloud-based Translating Software
If you don’t have the necessary space on your computer, or your hardware is not up for the task, you might want to consider using cloud-based software. With cloud-based programs, you don’t have to worry about freeing up space to accommodate bulky programs or your saved work. You can save your work in real-time, much like on Google Docs, and translate as you go along.
You can choose from free or paid programs, depending on what kind of translating you need to do. The downsides to using cloud-translation services, as with most cloud-based programs are the possible security issues. Your work can be subject to hackers, who have a knack for breaking into cloud data. With cloud services, you also become reliant on the internet for your translating, which can prove to be a problem in some cases.
Using Offline Desktop Translation Tools
Whether you’re translating for work or pleasure, translation that requires you to use the internet at all times can become impractical. Offline desktop translation tools are the new dictionaries of the 21st century. The obvious bonus of offline desktop tools is that you can use them when you’re offline. You can continue to translate when the internet connection is bad, your data runs out, or you’re on holiday with no signal.
You also don’t have to worry about servers crashing or your data being lost. The few downsides are that you do have to free up some space on your PC. Most (although not all) work only on desktop devices so your PC needs to be able to take the heat. Also, with programs that you have to install, you risk losing all your work if something happens to your PC.
As with many things, translating has become much easier with the advancement of modern technology. Today, you can translate almost anything you want, you only need to determine how you want to do it. Whether for work or fun, translating has never been easier and more compatible. Whether desktop programs, cloud-services the choice is yours. You get to decide what is the most important aspect for you when it comes to translating.