Computer editing as a translation efficiency skill: Summary evidence from keystrokes
Earlier studies have reported on differences in drafting and revising style between professional and non-professional translators. This article presents analysis of keystroke data in order to isolate trends that indicate patterns of final text production. As part of a larger think-aloud study, eight subjects, (a student, two German professors, two translation professors, and three professional translators) translated on computer from German into English while thinking aloud. All keystrokes were logged using a computer deamon. Two styles of translation revision are found: Deletion, immediate revision of errors with little post-translation navigation, and Navigation, post-translation keystrokes to reach and correct errors. Although Deletion is more efficient than Navigation in keystroke use, no evidence was found in this sample that one style is more efficient than the other in terms of overall text production speed. In addition, no division between professionals and non-professionals was evident in this small study. More research is needed on a larger sample.
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