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The English Department has introduced a workshop entitled "Machine Translation and its Problems" which is considered to be an extension of the series of workshop implemented by the college for improving the academic and cultural knowledge of the students. The workshop is run by Dr. Sayed Ismail and provides an overview about the machine translation and introduces students to the most important websites of translation. It trains students on how they can use them to translate different types of translation and making the best benefit from these translation websites. Since most sources of knowledge are written in English, it has become necessary for all students to translate these sources into Arabic and the translation process can be easily done through using these websites of translation as they help learners save time and effort and translate many pages immediately when they are entered.
However, translation is not such an easy process, as it is principally a human act. Translators often translate the content rather than the form and the sense rather than the meaning. However, the machine translation focuses on the superficial meaning of the terms and expressions without taking into account the context and surrounding realities of the text. As such, the workshop attempts to shed more insights onto a number of problems arising from the machine translation, which includes the polysemy. Polysemy is defined as the association of one word with two or more distinct meanings, and a polyseme is a word or phrase with multiple meanings.
This linguistic phenomenon is common in the Arabic language. For example, the word, kitab, which is equivalent to Book, may mean " the glorious Qur'an'' , "record", "time", and so on. It seems that this word has several meanings, which cannot be assimilated by the machine translation program which are unable to decipher the idea of polysemy, historical, temporal, spatial context of the text.