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What Software Do I Need????
Thread poster: dmaswary
dmaswary  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:52
Portuguese to English
Mar 31, 2008

I am sending a resume with my work samples,language pairs and all the good stuff that comes along with everything else involved in the business. I have noticed that a fair share of translation agencies require Trados. What is the bare minimum of equipment aka software I eed for agencies to take me seriously; with the obvious exception of doing good work and having a good resume.

Of these, which is actually the most useful?

I saw one Trados Software package for an eye-popping 1,000$. I dont really think I need that, is their a cheaper bare-bones version I could get that would look as good on a resume and still get the job done?

I'll take any answerw on the forum and if anyone with this sort of compute experience would be so kind as to even shoot me an e mail at dmaswary@hotmail.com that would be fine too Either way, I'll take any answer I can get. I want to send my resume out tomorrow and it is written outside of the software section.

Help!!!!!

Thank you!


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Thomas Ochiltree  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:52
Member (2005)
Latin to English
+ ...
TRADOS NOT NECESSARY FOR ME Mar 31, 2008

I've been in the business for two and a half years and have had to turn down only two jobs (out of three hundred, and I only work part time) because of my lack of Trados.

I find what is important is -- assuming you're working in WORD -- to master the many formatting kinks of the latter, though you are not normally expected to visually reproducte the document.

You may wish to get ABBYY Fine Reader, which enables you to transform a PDF file into a WORD file that you can overwrite, though this only works with a good original (not slanted on page, not handwritten, etc. and is not indispensable.)

Some outsourcers send "zipped" filed. For these WinZip is necessary, but again if your software can handle reasonably large documents you can ask that the document be sent unzipped by PDF.

Sometimes outsourcers send a converted WORD version of the document. This may contain errors (see third paragraph from top of this answer) so if the document was originally received by the outsourcer in PDF format ask for it in that version too and print out a hard copy to compare with the WORD file, which may be less accurate.

More important than sexy software is a good set of online glossaries input into your favorites file. ProZ is invaluable in helping build such a library, and ProZ term search, Google, and the ProZ "ask answerers" are invaluable to me.

I've only been in the game, so the above are no "Bible", but hopefully they may be useful. Good luck!


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gianfranco  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 09:52
Member (2001)
English to Italian
+ ...
Send your resume - It will take time... Mar 31, 2008

David Maswary wrote:
I want to send my resume out tomorrow and it is written outside of the software section.


You can browse many forums in the site and find easily a large number of discussions about the very same choice you are facing. Purchase or not purchase a CAT tool? And which one? And other related discussions.

In any case, you are unlikely to make your choice by tomorrow, let alone get the software and become proficient in its use. Plan for a ride of a few weeks, perhaps a few months, before you complete this part of your professional growth.

Note that (as you will see in many discussions) it is not necessary to purchase an expensive CAT tool, or even to buy one at all. It depends on the kind of work you do, or would like to do. On the other hand, knowing these tools and testing them, learning what they can do for you, or what they cannot do, is certainly useful and recommended.


bye
Gianfranco


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:52
English to Spanish
+ ...
MSWord Mar 31, 2008

MSWord is all you need, no CATS. If you know your stuff you can get by with that just fine.

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Anindita Basu  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 18:22
English to Bengali
+ ...
OpenOffice handles MSOffice files Mar 31, 2008

...and OpenOffice is a freeware, which means that you don't need to buy the MSOffice Suite. You can open, edit, and save .doc files (Word files) in OpenOffice.

TM tools - I am playing around with OmegaT (http://www.omegat.org/en/omegat.html) and I like it but then, I am not into professional translation (I have a day job as a tech writer). But at first glance, it does seem to offer a lot of things that Trados does...

To summarise, my two cents would be: (Adding to the excellent suggestions of Thomas and others)

(1) Open Office: for handling the files, and also for keeping track of your projects (you could use the worksheets)
(2) OmegaT : for TMs
(3) Dictionaries in your specific field


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xxxwonita
China
Local time: 09:52
Word is good enough for a start Mar 31, 2008

I have been working predominantly with MSWord, occasionally with MsPPT or MsExcel. But when I started 4 years ago, I was turned down by a special agency due to "insufficient technical equipment". I guess when applying to agencies, you have to offer something special to be considered for new works, either low rates, or expertise in some special fields, or trendy softwares, whatever their translators do not normally possess.

Later I was approached by clients, and they never asked me what softwares I use.

Good luck!

[Edited at 2008-03-31 07:59]


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Thorson
Local time: 14:52
Danish to English
My recommendations exactly--plus Zamzar Mar 31, 2008

Anindita Basu wrote:

...and OpenOffice is a freeware, which means that you don't need to buy the MSOffice Suite. You can open, edit, and save .doc files (Word files) in OpenOffice.

TM tools - I am playing around with OmegaT (http://www.omegat.org/en/omegat.html) and I like it but then, I am not into professional translation (I have a day job as a tech writer). But at first glance, it does seem to offer a lot of things that Trados does...

To summarise, my two cents would be: (Adding to the excellent suggestions of Thomas and others)

(1) Open Office: for handling the files, and also for keeping track of your projects (you could use the worksheets)
(2) OmegaT : for TMs
(3) Dictionaries in your specific field


Someone who only uses msword doesn't realize what OmegaT can do for them. OmegaT will pull the text out of a word document (after conversion to odt with Open Office) with complicated formatting and layout into a line-by-line or paragraph-by-paragrach translation setup, then place the translated text back into the formatted document, making things a lot easier and faster.

Another great tool for converting to and from pdf and other formats is the free conversion service Zamzar.com. I spent some time searching for a good pdf converter and didn't find a good one that wasn't expensive, then I found Zamzar. In converting from pdf to word format, it maintains layout and images. Then translate using OmegaT and you end up with a formatted word document that Zamzar can then convert back to pdf.

[Edited at 2008-03-31 12:26]


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 15:52
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Get Wordfast or Metatexis soon Mar 31, 2008

Both can be used for free. They require MS Word though. OmegaT does not.
Accross is a very advanced tool which is distributet for free to freelance-translators.
Any CAT-tool will improve your speed and accuracy.
Cheers
Heinrich


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 15:52
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Zamsar creates large files Mar 31, 2008

Thorson wrote:

Another great tool for converting to and from pdf and other formats is the free conversion service Zamzar.com. I spent some time searching for a good pdf converter and didn't find a good one that wasn't expensive, then I found Zamzar. In converting from pdf to word format, it maintains layout and images. Then translate using OmegaT and you end up with a formatted word document that Zamzar can then convert back to pdf.

[Edited at 2008-03-31 12:26]


I tried zamsar and got a 20 mb rtf-file from a 230 kb pdf. As doc it was still 800 kb.

I'll stick with Abbyy Finereader.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 14:52
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
You need to be prompt and professional Mar 31, 2008

David Maswary wrote:
What is the bare minimum of equipment aka software I eed for agencies to take me seriously; with the obvious exception of doing good work and having a good resume.


It sounds to me like you've already decided that you need software to be taken seriously. Personally I think you can go far by just behaving in a friendly, prompt and professional manner. Get Alex Eames' book.

As for software, well, different clients have different requirements, and if your software does not meet that requirement (regardless of what it cost you), then that particular client will not "take you seriously", so to speak.

So if you want to target Trados clients, get Trados. But you won't get more clients than just the Trados clients simply because you have Trados.

A working knowledge of CAT tools is always useful, so I suggest you start out by using OmegaT (freeware) and Wordfast (almost freeware) to get a feel for it. Then at least you'll know what a client is talking about and you'll be able to answer and make it sound like you know what you're talking about, when CAT tools come up.


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Thorson
Local time: 14:52
Danish to English
You're a lot richer than me ;-) Apr 8, 2008

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Thorson wrote:

Another great tool for converting to and from pdf and other formats is the free conversion service Zamzar.com. I spent some time searching for a good pdf converter and didn't find a good one that wasn't expensive, then I found Zamzar. In converting from pdf to word format, it maintains layout and images. Then translate using OmegaT and you end up with a formatted word document that Zamzar can then convert back to pdf.

[Edited at 2008-03-31 12:26]


I tried zamsar and got a 20 mb rtf-file from a 230 kb pdf. As doc it was still 800 kb.

I'll stick with Abbyy Finereader.


ABBYY FineReader 9.0 Professional Edition

Download version* 139 Euro / 89 Pound
Boxed version
(includes printed User’s Guide) 149 Euro / 99 Pound


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