1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Duolingo
  4. >
  5. Is Google Translate really as…

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jaw1605

Is Google Translate really as bad as people say?

So the other day in my French class my French teacher told us never to ever use Google Translate because it's completely inaccurate and is useless. However, I beg to differ because whenever I'm practising my Spanish, French, German etc. online I always have Google Translate open in case I don't know a word or two. I do agree with her when she says that it's never a good idea to try and translate an entire paragraph with Google Translate.

I'm just interested in knowing: what do you all think?

December 2, 2017

24 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FreeHelicopters

Depends, yes its great for alot of words.

However it can really mess up context, I was trying multiple sentences english to spanish and back again. Gets sentences completely wrong due to multiple meaning words where context matters.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Onyx6969

I think putting a few sentances into it is not a good idea, however, if you want to find out a word or two, it is good for that. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RVFVS

Google translate works well when you're only doing single words, or translating between languages that have certain grammatical similarities. For instance, translating from french to spanish will probably be a lot more accurate than translating from spanish to khmer, because french and spanish are close relatives, while spanish and khmer aren't related much at all, besides being indo-european.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gabzerbinatoEng

The Khmer language belongs to the Austroasiatic family. Therefore, Spanish and Khmer aren't really related at all.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roman_Huczok

Ok, https://translate.google.com.ua/#vi/en/ti%E1%BA%BFng%20Vi%E1%BB%87t https://translate.google.com.ua/#vi/en/ti%E1%BA%BFng%20Vi%E1%BB%87t%20c%E1%BB%A7a%20b%E1%BA%A1n%20r%E1%BA%A5t%20t%E1%BB%91t As you can see, tiếng Việt apparently changes meaning from 'Vietnamese' to 'English' if you add 'your ... is very good' to it. Tiếng Việt của bạn rất tốt is correctly translated as 'Your Vietnamese is very good', but Google translate decides it should be 'Your English is very good'. I have no idea why it does that. Google translate is also absolutely useless when it comes to tone, ignoring tone markings altogether in most cases. My experience of using Google translate with Vietnamese is that it is useless both for translating individual words and for translating whole sentences. Today I was talking with someone about the meaning of mặn mà, which depending on context can refer either to food which is perfectly seasoned, or a woman with a refined and mature beauty. Google translate's translation: salty.

I'll never forget the time that Arabic ezzayak (how are you) was translated as 'I love you', and sometimes I like to play with just how good Google translate is with Spanish (better than it was but still awful) by copying random things and translating them into English with Google. One of my favourites is the time when it translated 'little lake of chocolate' as 'chocolate lobster', but it also gives 'sobremesa' as 'dessert' and many other utter fails. Whatever Google translate gives you, especially when translating from English to English, take it with a very big grain of refined and mature beauty.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/flootzavut

"take it with a very big grain of refined and mature beauty."

LOL nice one, I genuinely laughed aloud :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NicolasHIk

Google Translate keeps getting better and better. However, I prefer using Reverso for translating between Spanish, English, French and Dutch. I guess it also depends on the languages that you want to translate.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/idkhbtfm

it's usually pretty good for translating one word translations, but it can really mess up translating sentences or phrases.


Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.