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Best tool for web-based translation?
Thread poster: Cagou
Local time: 20:50
English to French
+ ...
Mar 28, 2008

Hi all,

I write and maintain technical documentation in a company that has many subsidiaries worldwide.

I also coordinate the translation of this documentation. Up to now I've been working the old-fashioned way, i.e. sending each translator the files to be translated + TMs and glossaries...

But with more and more language versions and a fast-evolving range of products, this is getting really impractical.
So I am looking for a way to set up an on-line translation system (web-based ? or with another client-server application...).

The idea is that translators could connect any time and identify the new source text to be translated into their language (with on without downloading to their system). TM would be centralized. Ideallly translators would get warned automatically when source text has changed and translation is not yet available in their target language.

Does any of you have experience working that way? What would be the best tool(s) to set up such a system?

Thanks for your help,


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Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:50
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Try Lingotek Mar 28, 2008

Hi Cagou,

I´ve never used it myself, but I think this might be what you are looking for.


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Dierk Seeburg  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:50
German to English
+ ...
Have a look at Pootle Mar 29, 2008

You can get started at Pootle's homepage which describes this open source project:
"Pootle is a user-friendly web portal that makes the translation process so much simpler. It allows online translation, work assignment, gives statistics and allows easy volunteer contribution. You can run Pootle as an Internet server like these projects or run your own copy on an Intranet (for individual work, team work or Translate@thons)."

They just came out with a new version, too!

Here is an article on Wikipedia.

The project has just been accepted into the Google Summer of Code, a major boost and tribute to its contributors.

You can start downloading here.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:50
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
I also thought about Pootle, but... Mar 30, 2008

I use Pootle for a volunteer software translation project myself.

Dierk Seeburg wrote:
"Pootle is a user-friendly web portal that makes the translation process so much simpler. ..."

It makes the translation process simpler, but it doesn't make the translation project manager's job simpler. Well, okay, to be honest, the PM's job is also simpler, but that is because his upstream process are already automated.

The way Pootle works, is to attempt to retranslate the entire source file every time there is a new version of the source file. In Pootle you don't need to proofread autotranslated matches because all segments have IDs. In normal paragraph text, the paragraphs and sentences don't have IDs and any autotransaltion process (leveraging from the TM) really needs a proofread to ensure that mismatched 100% matches do not occur in the text. But Pootle doesn't work with such text -- it only works with source files that contain content IDs. For example, localisation content.

Of course, I have no idea what Catherine's source files are. If her source files are XLIFF files, then Pootle may actually be something to look at. But if they are MS Word files or DTP files, then perhaps Pootle will end up being more work for her.

Also, Pootle only allows translators to download/upload source files as PO or XLIFF. Of course, Pootle can also export to formats like CSV, but translators can't upload the CSV files (although they can convert the CSV files to PO using Translate Toolkit tools).

You can start downloading here.

If you're going to give Pootle a try, may I suggest you also read the user manual because you may have to install additional utilities.

Do you use Pootle yourself, Dierk?

[Edited at 2008-03-30 08:14]

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Local time: 20:50
English to French
+ ...
Interesting information - Thank you Mar 31, 2008

Thank you for this information.
I had never heard about either software (Lingotek or Pootle) before, so that's great news for me!

I shall have a closer look at them and try them out and let you know what I think.
Of course, if anybody else uses these software on a daily basis, I'd be interested to hear what they think.

Lingotek seems to have better "tracking" features, which is important for me as I am required to keep track of all changes in our documents.
On the other hand, Pootle is free and open source, so it's worth having a good look too because some open source tend to evolve/survive better than commercial stuff (Dierk, I think it's great too if Pootle has been selected in the Google summer of code).

Actually, I did think some of the more "usual" tools (Trados, Wordfast, Across, etc.) allow remote translation with a centralized TM... but is it the case?

And, to answer Samuel, yes, unfortunately, most of our documents are MS Word. MS Word IS frustrating, specially for long and complex docs, and we have considered migrating to other formats but with many people collaborating both in-house and externally, it is hard to find something that is as commonly used by all (up to now, that is... for the future, things are open).

Thanks all for your help,


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Gerhard Wiesinger  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:50
English to German
+ ...
Try across Apr 5, 2008

I thinc across does everything you are asking for. Check it out a
Good luck,

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ghislandi  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:50
English to Italian
TM Server with Trados Apr 28, 2008


I work for SDL Trados.

We have 3 central server:
- One which allows sharing of translation memories of the Internet.
- One which will allow you to share SDL MultiTerm database over the Internet (you can also try for the terminology part)
- A central project tracking tool

They can all be used independently. ie you can choose whether to only have the central Translation memory or the central terminology or both for example.

I hope this helps.


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iLen  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:50
English to Chinese
+ ...
Try XTM May 23, 2008

Try XTM from XML Intl, it comes with Project Management features and good online translation interface.

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Kristyna Marrero  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:50
Try Wordfast Anywhere Mar 25, 2010

Hi Catherine,

It's been a while, but I wanted to let you know about Wordfast Anywhere, our browser-based TM tool which is currently FREE for all translators. To try Wordfast Anywhere, go to and create a login. Once you login, you can upload your documents as well as your TMs and glossaries to a private workspace and begin translating. Your TMs and glossaries grow as you translate and remain completely confidential (your private workspace cannot be accessed by anyone). You can also leverage translations from a large public, read-only TM (the VLTM), and/or from machine translation when there are no matches in your private TM.

You can learn more about Wordfast anywhere here -



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Local time: 20:50
English to French
+ ...
Try Wordfast anywhere Mar 25, 2010

Thank you Krystina.
You're right it's been a while but still...
I'll try that.


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Security and confidentiality Apr 20, 2011

Kristyna Marrero wrote:
It's been a while, but I wanted to let you know about Wordfast Anywhere, our browser-based TM tool which is currently FREE for all translators.

Hello Kristyna,

I am wondering how Wordfast Anywhere protects security and confidentiality of materials stored in its servers. Is it using any form of encryption? Translators are often subject to confidentiality agreements and must prevent their clients' intellectual property from being used by third parties. How do Wordfast Anywhere help translators achieve the highest possible levels of security and confidentiality?



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