Archive for the ‘CAT (Computer-Aided Translation)’ Category

SDL Trados 2007

March 19, 2007

Proz.com is offering a discount on updates to SDL Trados 2007. I am not convinced I need it. First of all, my volume of work doesn’t really justify the extra investment.  Second of all… OK, I don’t really have a second reason.

 Do you have an opinion? Share it with me.

Deja Vu (X) all over again

May 13, 2006

A series of documents I translated four months ago has been revised, so their corresponding translations must be updated. This is at the office, where I use DVX.

This is the kind of assignment that makes purchasing a CAT tool a worthwhile investment. The documents have plenty of technical language, lots of repetitions, and lots of complex tables.

One of the advantages of on-site translation? Every so often, somebody will bring goodies such as donuts. At least at the office I am capable of restraint and will only eat one. I cannot say that when I work from home.

"How was your day?" (includes alternate ending)

April 7, 2006

Every day, my husband (codename: Conan) picks me up after work. We chat. I ask about his day. His responses are brief. As a city employee, “Conan” deals with the public every day. Most members of the public act right, but every so often, there is somebody who fails to observe basic standards of behavior. His own method of coping with these unpleasant incidents is to summarize his workday as “Best forgotten” or “Ah, it’s over”. It seems to work for him.

In my particular day job, I sit behind a computer screen all day, with some interruptions to visit the vending machine. There is no interaction with the public and very little with other humans. I translate. I proofread. I read and answer e-mail. Rarely, I get a work-related phone call. The best days are those when I have an absorbing project to occupy my time.

“And how was your day?”, Conan asks me.

What I wanted to say:
“This project I had been working for two weeks? Remember, 51 pages? Well, I tried exporting it using my DVX program, but apparently, I placed the formatting codes wrong or something. ‘Cause it kept coming out at 3 pages! Can you believe that nonsense? I finally figured it out. I fixed the codes, and now we have a 52-page chart!”

What I ended up saying:
Eh.

Au revoir, TRADOS 6.5

March 19, 2006

Yesterday, I opened Word, and I discovered I had two TRADOS toolbars. The old one, and the new SDL TRADOS 2006 one.

I went ahead and uninstalled the old TRADOS 6.5, the tool I used for my first translation job (an occupational health and safety manual, written in Puerto Rican Spanish). Funny, I thought it would be about as emotional as the time I packed up my belongings prior to my move to the States. However, it ended up being about as uneventful as getting rid of my child’s outgrown outfits.

SDL MultiTerm 7 is now on my computer

March 16, 2006

As you all know, last week I installed SDL TRADOS 2006 in my computer.

Yesterday, I downloaded the new version of SDL MultiTerm 7. Before installing, I had to uninstall the old version. Brr. Of course, I forgot to backup my termbases. This is not necessarily a problem, as they were developed for one-time projects.

In any case, there it is. I have the latest on translation software on my computer. Whee.

How does it compare to other CAT tools/the previous version of TRADOS? I have no clue. Stay tuned.

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SDL Trados 2006 has arrived!

March 13, 2006

Finally, the much anticipated SDL TRADOS 2006 has arrived.

Actually, it arrived in the middle of last week, but I was afraid to download my copy for reasons I cannot explain. It took 40 minutes of waiting, with my stomach all tied up in knots.

I still need to download the new version of MultiTerm, but I am nervous about uninstalling the old version first. Let me read those instructions again.

To be continued…

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More translation

February 7, 2006

I finished the newsletter translation yesterday. Today I translated an HTML document related to the newsletter. Thank you, DVX.

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Upgrading my CAT software

February 5, 2006

A few days ago, I received a message from the kind folks who make SDLX and TRADOS. Apparently, I would get some nice savings if I pre-ordered an upgrade from my current version of TRADOS (6.5) all the way to SDL Trados 2006 Freelance, a release that won’t be available until March 2006.

Yesterday, either I took a brave step into providing better translation services, or I took the bait. Just like when I bought TRADOS last year, there are no guarantees that clients will fall into my lap.

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The CAT lady (not talking about felines)

January 15, 2006

A long time ago, shortly after the Stone Age but before today, I joined proZ. At first, I used it only to look up terms that didn’t turn up in WordReference. Later on, I started exploring other areas. Back then, they had a section called CATfight, where you could compare and rate different computer-aided translation (CAT) programs, such as TRADOS, MetaTexis, Wordfast, and Deja Vu.

At the time, I had been employed for about a year at the nonprofit that is still my employer. I did all of my translation work the old-fashioned way: armed only with a few dictionaries and reference books, hard copies of previous translations, and a big strong cup of coffee. I had heard of websites that would do a crude translation, often with humorous or just plain bizarre results, but I had never heard of CAT tools. That is not surprising. CAT tools are not sold in the aisles of Best Buy, next to the screen savers and the Windows upgrades.

I went ahead and downloaded trial versions of the aforementioned programs, figuring one of those would increase my productivity at work:

  1. TRADOS: I think this was the first program I downloaded. I suspect this may have affected my impressions, because I hated, hated, HATED it. The formatting tags drove me batty. I uninstalled it and moved on. Later on, when I got my first assignment as a freelancer, I purchased version 6.5. After all, since so many translators use TRADOS, and so many of the jobs posted at the proz.com job board required TRADOS, I absolutely had to have it, right? And so, without reading this article, I went ahead and bought it. Do I regret it? No. TRADOS is a very powerful tool once you bother to read the accompanying documentation and take the time to learn it. However, it was naive of me to assume that this purchase would be followed by customers falling from the skies.
  2. Wordfast: Like TRADOS, at first it eluded me. Not only that, but it wreaked havoc with my word-processing program. My own difficulties aside, Wordfast has fans due to its simplicity and cost-effectiveness. At the time I downloaded it, it was available for free. Currently, it costs 180 euros (roughly $216.61 USD), a steal compared to the cost of other tools.
  3. MetaTexis: I can’t remember my experience with MetaTexis. Didn’t like it, moved on to the next one on the list.
  4. Deja Vu a.k.a. DVX: This was the winner. Its Professional version was available as a demo. I found it rather easy to learn. Once the 30-day trial period expired, I convinced my boss to purchase the Standard version. The Standard version lacks some of the features that hooked me in, such as the AutoPropagate for repeated segments, and AutoCorrect, which would have come in handy for all those time I type hte instead of the, or verificaci[on instead of verificación (that pesky Spanish keyboard!) However, I still can build a translation memory by aligning an original text and its translation, or prepare a glossary by using the Lexicon tool.
  5. SDLX: SDLX is made by the same company that makes TRADOS. Or more accurately, the company that makes SDLX acquired the company that makes TRADOS. A few years after getting DVX for my office, I downloaded a trial version of SDLX. I found it very similar to DVX and relatively easy to use. Although I did not recommend my employer purchase it, nor did I buy it myself, I can see myself buying it in the future.

TRADOS/SDL Blog

January 13, 2006

I came across a blog dedicated to TRADOS and SDL. According to blogger Luis Lopes himself,

I will be mostly posting about interesting solutions to problems that occur in my daily work in the Support Department at TRADOS / SDL and which might be interesting for a wide range of people that use TRADOS Tools.

Most (OK, all) of his postings go right over my head in their technicality, but others may find them helpful.

Coming Attractions: my own experiences with TRADOS. Refreshments will not be provided.