How does a Translation Memory work?

We have mentioned quite a lot in the past the use of Translation Memories as a means to obtain a consistent yet cost efficient translation at little to no effort from our translators. What we want to do now is to explain to you why and how this works, allowing you to better understand our system. Using a translation memory does not mean using a machine translation but rather re-using previous translations. The Translation Memory, or TM, represents a database of „pairs”, formed by sections of already translated and approved text, in both source and target languages. Usually, the software we use in this regard (whether it is alignment programs or SDL Trados), divides the segments automatically, usually in sentences, list or table elements. Any new text is then compared to the one stored in the database and similar segments will be recognized and shown as a ”fuzzy” match. When