“Not only is my short-term memory horrible, but so is my short-term memory.” I have no idea who this quote can be attributed to, and its certainly not original, but it is quite appropriate when I start to think about the evolution of Trados. Ever since Trados Studio was launched you can be sure to find many “experts” in places like ProZ and even the SDL Community recommending you don’t upgrade because there is no difference compared to the last version. To be fair, if you only use a fraction of the features despite having used the software for a decade, then it probably is like this. The alternative being these “experts” have very short-term memories.
I first wrote about the Glossary Converter on September 17, 2012… over three years ago. Not only is it a surprisingly long time ago, but I still meet people at every conference I attend who have never heard of this marvelous little tool, and in some cases never heard of the OpenExchange either. So when I toyed with the idea of writing an article about Xmas coming early and talking about the OpenExchange and all the goodies inside, part of me couldn’t resist writing about this tool again. In the three years since it was first released it’s morphed beyond all recognition and today it’s awash with features that belie it’s appearance.
I like to take a little credit for the emergence of this tool because back in 2012 I asked around trying to get someone to create one so that it was straightforward for anyone to create a MultiTerm Glossary from a simple two column spreadsheet… the sort of glossary that most translators use for their day to day needs. I was over the moon when Gerhard (the developer) was interested and created the tool I wrote about back then. But I can take no credit whatsoever for what the tool has become today and it’s well worth revisiting!
When the developer of the Word Cloud plugin for SDL Trados Studio first showed me the application he developed I was pretty impressed… mainly because it just looked so cool, but also because I could think of a couple of useful applications for it.
- You could see at a glance what the content of the project was and how interesting it might be for you
- It looks cool… or did I say that already?
This article is all about out with the old and in with the new in more ways than one! In the last week I have been asked three times about converting Wordfast translation memories and Wordfast glossaries into resources that could be used in Studio and MultiTerm. Normally, for the TXT translation memories I get I would go the traditional route and use a copy of Wordfast to export as TMX. Then it’s simple, but what if you don’t have Wordfast or don’t want to have to try and use it? Wordfast glossaries are new territory for me as I’d never looked at these before. But on a quick check it looked as though they are also TXT files so I decided to take a better look.
Before I get into the detail I’ll just add that I’m not very familiar with Wordfast so I’m basing my suggestions on the small number of files I have received, or created, and the process I used to convert them to formats more useful for a Studio user. I’ll start with the glossaries as this is where I got the idea from, I better explain my opening statement too… this is because after I did an initial conversion using the Glossary Converter from the SDL Openexchange I was asked to explain how this would work with MultiTerm Convert. This of course made me think about the old versus the new… I wouldn’t compare Wordfast and Studio in this way at all 😉 Continue reading
By now I think we’ve discussed the import of an IATE TBX into CAT tools as much as we can without going over old ground again. But if you’re reading this and don’t know what I’m talking about then perhaps review these two articles first:
What a whopper! – which is all about the difficulties of handling a TBX the size of the one that is available from the IATE download site.
A few bilingual TBX resources – which is a short article sharing a few of the TBX files I extracted for a few users who were having problems dealing with the 2.2Gb, 8 million term whopper we started with.
So why am I bringing this up again? Well I do like to have the last word… don’t we all… but this time I wanted to share the work of Henk Sanderson who has put a lot of time and effort into breaking the IATE TBX into bite sized chunks and at the same time cleaning them up so they can be more useful to a translator. I also wanted to share the successful import of the complete original TBX from IATE directly into MultiTerm Server:
***Updated 24 June 2017***
When Studio 2009 was launched one of the first applications on the new SDL OpenExchange was the SDLXLIFF Converter for Microsoft Office. This was an excellent application created by Patrik Mazanek that paved the way for some of the new features you see in Studio 2014 today.
The idea back then was born out of a requirement to export the contents of an sdlxliff file to Microsoft Excel but with no re-import to update the translation. If you were an SDLX user you’d probably recognise that this was something you could do in SDLX, and the request that this would be possible in Studio was coming from many SDLX users.
Déjà Vu, another translation tool, had this concept of “External Views” where you could export the contents of your translation into a couple of formats, one of them being an RTF document formatted as a table containing the source and target text. But the neat thing about this was that you could reimport the RTF and update your translation with whatever edits had been made in the RTF. This was very cool, and as far as I’m aware no other tool had this capability at the time, short of working in Microsoft Word on a Bilingual DOC in the first place. So when Patrik produced his first build of the converter and announced that he had included a similar capability using DOCX in addition to the Excel export this was very exciting!
I’m onto the subject of leverage from upgraded Translation Memories with this post, encouraged by the release of a new (and free) application on the SDL OpenExchange called the TM Optimizer. Before we get into the geeky stuff I want to elaborate on what I mean by the word “leverage” because I’m not sure everyone reading this will know.
Let’s assume you have been a translator for years (English to Chinese), and you always worked with Microsoft Word and Translators Workbench. TagEditor came along, but you didn’t like that too much so you kept working with Word and Workbench. It had its problems, but until Studio came along and in particular Studio 2014, you were still quite happy to work the same way you had for years. But now you wanted to buy a new computer, and you really liked the things you’ve been reading about Studio 2014 so you took a leap and purchased a license of Studio. The first thing you want to do is upgrade your old Workbench Translation Memories so they could be reused in Studio. You’ve got around 60,000 Translation Units in one specialised Translation Memory and you really need to be able to have this available as soon as possible to help with a job you know is just around the corner. You upgrade the Translation Memory and this worked perfectly!
The launch of SDL Trados Studio 2014 this month brings with it the news that SDL Trados 2007 Suite will no longer be supported from the end of this year. I don’t think this will come as a surprise to anyone as SDL had already ceased to support SDL Trados 2007 since the end of 2012, and with the releases of the 2009, 2011 and now 2014 versions of SDL Trados Studio it’s inevitable that the 2007 Suite version will follow suit.
I believe this interesting quote can be found in “Prometheus Bound”, a play by a Greek dramatist called Aeschylus. I haven’t read the play, but I like the quote, and it certainly lends itself to the importance of memory… even when we refer to a Translation Memory rather than your own built in capability. It’s because your Translation Memory is such an important asset to you that you need to regularly maintain it, and also reuse it wherever possible to expand the benefits you get from it.
People often tell me that using Studio is complicated. Other people, who have been working with Studio tell me it’s actually quite logical once you get your mind around it. I clearly lean towards the latter and whilst I always try hard to see the difficulties the conclusion I always come back to, rightly or wrongly, is that many users who used Trados in the past expect Studio to be similar and then struggle when they discover it’s not.