RxISK Prize: Campaign & Challenge

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November 28, 2017 | 8 Comments


  1. Good response from (ex)user and survivor group in Denmark, after comment byJohn revealed which groups were members of so called european health parliament and David helped with the message which was too long when taken from the attached rxisk blog. They will put it on facebook and yahoo with thanks to Olga. Only one out of about 10 groups replied so far which is par for the course but some were a very long shot and as described in the blog maybe there isn’t a translation on google for the other countries which i was assuming there would be – goodness knows what the message was saying in Croatia…When I write anywhere Am
    adding asking if people could put a comment on the blog now , and adding it can be anonymously with no e mail address shown

  2. Oh, my word – have read through the Welsh subtitles such as they are. To say that they are a load of rubbish is an understatement. It is disgraceful that whoever translated them has the face to put up such nonsensical tripe.
    Whilst I am absolutely delighted to see the Welsh language getting its due status, I am horrified that this standard is considered (by someone, somewhere) as being acceptable. There are numerous incomplete sentences, several English words for which the Welsh version is widely used and the whole that is present has obviously been ‘translated’ word by word. Translating is an art – one that goes way beyond giving the translated words in the same order as presented in the English version.
    If I was presented with the Welsh version without having ever seen the English version, I wouldn’t have a clue what they were all about. I certainly will not be telling anyone to switch these subtitles on. I bet someone has claimed a hefty amount for such rubbish.
    Most disappointingly, there are no absolute misunderstandings as such there. Some such translations can be hilariously funny – nothing like that here!
    I feel totally deflated – and extremely glad that all Welsh speakers are bilingual!

    • Mary

      Can you write them out and translate back into English to give Wales an early lead in this new international competition


      • Yes, by all means I would do that – except that, in doing so, they will look right! Welsh, like French etc. puts the adjective after the noun whereas English is the opposite – the Google version has used English rules in the Welsh language which just doesn’t work. ( Of course, it would show up the missing parts etc. but that’s only part of the problem!)
        Would it make more sense if I did as you say and then added a corrected version? I’ll get cracking and see what can be done to show the poor quality!

  3. Martin BenjaminLexicographer, Anthropologist, Tati

    Google Translate is based on something called “statistical machine translation”. This means that they gather as much text as they can find that seems to be parallel between two languages, and then they crunch their data to find the likelihood that something in Language A corresponds to something in Language B.

    This method works to some extent for language pairs where a lot of more-or-less parallel data is available, for example English-Spanish. However, it fails completely when such data is paltry or non-existent, as is the case with most language pairs. For most pairs in the Google Translate set of 80 languages, they go from Language A to English, then from English to Language B, with predictably unintelligible results.

    The other way that you could say Google Translate “works” is that it often meets its users’ expectations. If you feed something into the program, you are not expecting to get a perfect translation. You are expecting to get something that will clue you in to the intent of the original. Since you are getting something for free that gives you better understanding than you would have had otherwise, the translation often “works” for you. However, if you were to use the service for translations that your business depended on, without post-editing, you would run far too much of a risk of total failure – the people receiving your translations would not be reading them with your same mindset of “better than nothing”, and would therefore wonder why you were sending them sometimes incomprehensible gibberish.

    On the question of whether they have a database of all the words in a particular language, the answer is a firm “no”. In fact, many basic translations are missed entirely. “I will be unavailable tomorrow” is translated as just the opposite in French and many other languages, for example. Buyer beware.

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  4. A great rapid response in Thebmj from the wonderful Stavros Saripanidis – which received no support from other respondents – In response to article published 1st December ‘NHS advises GPs Not to Prescribe Low Value Drugs’ Stavros S says he hopes anti depressants will be included in this advice. ‘Recent evidence reveals that administered anti depressants actually increases suicide risk by 2-5 times. A recent meta analysis level 1 clearly demonstrates that SSRIs double the risk of suicide and violence. Anti depressants can increase all cause mortality by 33%! Another meta anlysis in the the british journal of psychiatry found even patients with most severe depression can get as much benefit from CBT as those with less severe symptoms. Even behavioural activations decrease depressive symptoms . Refs given in response. Twitter : @drsaripanidis.

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