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Counting words in a website for a job offer: what is the best way?
Thread poster: sabina moscatelli

sabina moscatelli  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 14:58
Member (2004)
German to Italian
+ ...
Jan 19, 2009

Dear Colleagues

I was asked an offer for editing a complex website but now I have to calculate the exact number of words it contains. Any clue about it? Is copy-paste of each single section the only possible solution? Or should I ask for the html files?

Enjoy your week,

sabina

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-01-19 11:15 GMT]


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Mahmut Karakaya
Turkey
Local time: 15:58
English to Turkish
+ ...
I need it, too Jan 19, 2009

I hope that there is someone who knows the answer of this question. I need such an information, too.

Thanks in advance for the tip.


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 19:58
Partial member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
HTML and supporting files Jan 19, 2009

In recent days, websites contain many programming languages or object files e.g. html, xhtml, xml, asp, dbx, eml, txt, jpg, gif, jws etc.
I always ask for total source files since I may not seek all files unless I use all commands given in the website.
Soonthon L.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 14:58
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Ask for the files Jan 19, 2009

sabina moscatelli wrote:
Is copy-paste of each single section the only possible solution? Or should I ask for the html files?


Ask for the files. It is easy to miss something when reading the stuff online, and sometimes the client wanted something excluded that he didn't think of. Get the files from the client, and be sure.


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Mahmut Karakaya
Turkey
Local time: 15:58
English to Turkish
+ ...
word Jan 19, 2009

There is only one way that I know to count the words of a web page.

I simply copy the text, paste it to a clear M.S. Office word page, go to tools section and mark the word count. It gives the statistics of the page.

It may help...


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Sergei Leshchinsky  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 15:58
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
copy paste is erroneous Jan 19, 2009

is you copy paste, you might miss the hidden text like (alternative text for images) etc.

We all here need some good tool.


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Fabio Descalzi  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 09:58
Member (2004)
German to Spanish
+ ...
All the files! Jan 19, 2009

Samuel Murray wrote:
Ask for the files. It is easy to miss something when reading the stuff online, and sometimes the client wanted something excluded that he didn't think of. Get the files from the client, and be sure.

Agree with Samuel, it is the best for the translator: "the client delivers every sentence to be translated, period".
The worst surprise can be "something excluded that he didn't think of". Which means: not only the texts that the general public sees, but also tags, error messages, prompts for registered users, etc.

I can tell you a personal experience about this. A website designed to sell goods, text to be translated (into 5 languages): 3,000 words. Afterwards, the client realized "Oh my..., I need the tags, error messages, etc.!" so he sent me an extra 2,500 words to be translated into the same 5 languages. You see: a rather simple website (not very long) was suddenly almost twice as big!

Fortunately enough my client was very honest and paid accordingly; but... you never know how a client is if it is a new client, so you'd better explain this and ask for the whole lot to be translated.

My 2 cents,
Fabio


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Jorge Payan  Identity Verified
Colombia
Local time: 07:58
Member (2002)
German to Spanish
+ ...
Two good tools for donloading a complete site Jan 19, 2009

I have tried the following tools:

SurfOffline 2.0: http://www.surfoffline.com/ (30 days trial period- after that you can buy it for US 39.95 )

Httrack: http://www.httrack.com/ (free)

SurfOffline has a better GUI in my opinon.

In any case, don´t forget that you are downloading just for making a word count and proposal. For being at the safe side, you shouldn't work on the files you downloaded yourself, but on the ones directly supplied by your customer.

Simlary, you are not supposed to upload the files!

saludos


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Stanislav Pokorny  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 14:58
English to Czech
+ ...
Teleport Jan 19, 2009

Hi all,
you might want to try Teleport (www.tenmax.com). This tool will copy all the files from a website onto your local harddrive. You can then use any tool to get the wordcount (Trados, Anycount etc...).


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Gina Ferlisi
Italy
Local time: 14:58
Member (2008)
Italian to English
+ ...
word files Jan 20, 2009

I work for many web agencies, the best way is to ask them to send you the source files or in word or excel, mine always adds the hidden keywords too, easier than working in html.

Ciao Ciao

Have a nice day

Gina


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Alessandro Cattelan
Italy
Local time: 14:58
English to Italian
+ ...
local copy Jan 22, 2009

Copying and pasting is a very bad idea - you'll end up missing a lot of content and wasting a lot of time.

A good solution to get a rough or accurate estimate of the work to be done is using a software such as the already mentioned WinHTTrack (http://www.httrack.com/ ) to mirror the whole website (i.e. creating a local copy).

Once you've downloaded all the files from the Internet you get a working copy of the website on your hard disk. You may now use Trados or other tools to analyze the files you downloaded.

As I said, you might get a rough or accurate estimate. It basically depends on the technology used. Static HTML website can be analyzed accurately using this method. However, dynamic website which use server-side languages such as PHP or ASP may be very tricky. If you mirror such a site, you might get a huge number of superfluous or duplicated files. You'll have to go through the downloaded files and check that you did not download dozens of copies of the same file.

I do this on a daily basis (it's part of my job at the company I work for) and it takes me an average 15 minutes to get a good enough quote to win a client.

Remember, however, that the only way to actually translate/localize a website is to work on the source files.

If you just need to send an offer to your customer before he/she sends over the files to be translated, you may want to try one of the tricks we described. Anyway, it's certainly better to get the files first, analyze them, prepare the quote, win the contract and start the translation!

A.


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