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Trans. software useful for journalistic texts?
Thread poster: eva75

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Jan 4, 2007

I translate several journalistic texts and while I keep glossaries on the different subject areas, often it is more the phraseology rather than the terminology that causes problems. My glossaries contain several contextual fragments as a result.

Is there any translator out there who likes to use Trados or another TM programme to translate such texts as the above.

Any feedback or ideas would be much appreciated.

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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:24
Italian to English
Very useful indeed. Jan 4, 2007

Hi Eva,

For the past three and a bit years, I have been translating one or two articles a day for the
Corriere della Sera.

I always use Trados, not so much for terminology as consistency.

While MultiTerm's terminology management options are helpful even for journalistic work, I find the most useful feature is Workbench's Concordance. A simple keyboard shortcut will dig out previous occurrences of a word or phrase to enhance your consistency (or suggest variations, if that is what you need) over time. This can be quite important since the same topic might be treated on more than one occasion, sometimes weeks or months apart.

The main disadvantage of a CAT tool in these circumstances is that it focuses on the text segment by segment. This can tempt you to neglect the overall coherence of the piece so it is always a good idea to do careful revision outside the CAT environment, even if you don't have much time available.



[Edited at 2007-01-04 17:46]

[Edited at 2007-01-04 17:47]

[Edited at 2007-01-04 17:48]

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Time! Jan 4, 2007

Thanks for your answer, Giles. The problem, as always, is time. Personally, I would love to be able to use Trados for some of these articles I translate but the rest of my team may not be very eager to wait that long for the translations to be done. Opening and closing segments, as well as cleaning a document (one pages say) may take an extra 15 minutes, but if there is a high level of repetition it may be worth it. I guess I could do a text.

I know what you are saying about coherence...

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Luca Tutino  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:24
Member (2002)
English to Italian
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Pros and Cons of CATs with journalistic texts Jan 5, 2007

In my experience for Phraseology the Concordance feature of Trados is somewhat helpful.

Trados does not really slow my work in any way. The time needed to open and close segments is practically zero (provided you use the keyboard shortcuts), and the cleaning time is more than compensated, if not by the sparse repetitions, at least by the time spared at checking that I did not jump any sentence (with Trados it is almost impossible to jump one).

The main problem is that Concordance is NOT very reliable. For many reasons I can never be really certain that if Concordance does not find an expression, that expression is not included somewhere in my Translation Memory. (Examples at the end)

I actually use both Trados and a quick file indexing tool: all my translation files are collected in a directory together with the original files, and regularly indexed with DTsearch (or another equivalent). Then checking if a phrase is included there takes just a second. Backing up the bilingual files of Trados as well (which is automatic) makes the process even faster: DTsearch identifies the .bak file you look for, displays the line containing your phrase and -- if the context does not include your translation already -- you can easily scroll it!

Examples of reasons why you cannot relay completely on Trados, particularly with general texts:
- Results change by changing the correspondence percentage requested in the general setup.
- Editing gets a little clumsy at times, and I always need to do my last edit on a clean copy - and my TM does cannot retain these last changes.

[Edited at 2007-01-06 00:00]

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Local time: 20:24
French to Dutch
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Trans. software useful for journalistic texts? Jan 10, 2007

Yes, because it helps you to concentrate. The fact that you are seeing the translated sentence below the original one helps you to check everything: is it complete, are the facts and figures exact, is the style the same as the original. The only thing is to read it over once more, after clean-up, and then combine sentences if necessary and homogenize the style.

Besides, it helps for terminology.

I use Wordfast, which isn't heavy, for everything, even for small advertisement texts and menus of 50 words.

A special application: some years ago I did a big touristic translation about a French region, and later on I had to make abstracts of newspaper articles from my native language into my 2nd language. I "reversed" the TM and had lots of sentences ready for use.

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