Is machine translation useless? Part 1

Even though English continues to be the only international language forever, the need for English learning will diminish.That is not due to the progress of international politics, but by the advancement of technology.


Many people have studied English so far for communication. Because there is no other way of communication with foreigners, if there is any other way for those studying English, and if it does not take much time and effort, learning English is not necessary.


In this post, let’s think about the possibility of machine translation as an alternative to learning English.


When translating Einstein ‘s biographies in Japanese and publishing them, one chapter is incorrectly published as he forgot to fix it after using machine translation. The first version containing original machine translation came to be sold at high price in secondhand books with premium.


“damn pigs” was translated as “awesome pigs” in Japanese, for example. Looking at it, machine translation is certainly terrible but it may not be that bad as a whole.


Compared to machines translated and translated by the translators, the modified version is definitely much easier to read. However, it can be fully understood by machine translation. 80% is understandable.


In order for Japanese to understand this original text and to be in quantity, they have to study English at elementary school, junior high school, high school, university for over 10 years(it takes longer for Japanese people). On the other hand, if it is machine translation, it can be done with one button.


It would be super much better to read books to educate with that precious time for instance.


Then again let me clarify this, international couple for example, of course I do not think that machine translation will replace this whole thing. We want to, and should, learn language to have a real communication with emotion and stuff, that’s beautiful.


Many people say “Machine translation is useless.” Such people are usually comparing perfect translation and imperfect translation that machine does.


However, what we should compare is “Extraordinary time and effort required to learn English + reasonable English abilities gained by that” and ” The fact there is no need for learning at all + Translation that is incomplete but somehow can be used with only one button”


To compare fairly like this, machine translation beats in terms of efficiency.



Thank you for reading.

To be continued…


Also see:

1. Why All Japanese Think They Need To Speak English

2. English Education Has Aspects Of Voluntary Colonization

3. English Imperialism has destructed Eskimo?

4. Misunderstandings of English in Japan

5. Does English continue to be international languages? Part 1

5. Does English continue to be international languages? Part 2



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