When Kilgray introduced fuzzy term matching with the release of memoQ 2013, I was first concerned with how it worked after a few puzzling tests of the feature. Discussions with the development team soon cleared up that mystery, and I wrote an article describing the current fuzzy state of term matching technology in the translation environment tool that has done such a fine job of waking SDL and others from the long slumber of innovation that prevailed in the last decade.
But questions still remained in the minds of most users as they asked why they should care about this feature and what good it would really do for them.
The answer to that has become clearer for me as I have used the feature in recent weeks and noticed certain things. Like the fact that crappy spelling in my source texts is not as much of a burden for term matching any more:
This actually applies to more than just bad spelling. Those who translate from English will benefit from the fact that fuzzy term matching will help them if the UK source term is in the glossary but the author of the text used an American spelling. I cope with problems caused by old and new spelling conventions in German as well as the fact that a great many Germans cannot agree on how their compound words should be glued together. And my Portuguese friends tell me every week about the hassles of the spelling reform in progress in that linguistic corner.
Fuzzy term matches is currently not implemented for QA checking in memoQ, but I think it would make sense for Kilgray to add this feature to allow fuzzy term matching for QA on the source side. It could be a bit of a disaster to have it on the target side, however, for reasons I will leave readers to guess.
For those who want to set their termbases to use fuzzy matching by default in a particular language, here is a short video that shows how to change the termbase properties and how to change to match settings for legacy terms to "fuzzy":
I was initially a bit skeptical of the latest version of memoQ, but as this feature and a few others have begun to "sink in", while I still don't feel comfortable with the company's hyperbole over new features like LQA, which is largely pointless for freelance translators, I do feel confident in saying that fuzzy term matching is a reason for most of us to seriously consider upgrading to memoQ 2013. This will be even more the case if it is added to the QA features.
Ah, but what about the change to the comments function, Kevin? You really hated that!
There's more to say on that topic now. Some of it is even good.