CAT Tutorials
Thread poster: Whisper9999
Whisper9999
Local time: 06:55
English to Spanish
+ ...
Feb 24, 2009

Which of the less expensive CAT programs, i.e. Metatexis, Swordfish, etc., have the best tutorials for someone who has little to no experience with CAT programs? I have done a lot of translation but very little with the CAT programs and need to get up to speed quickly.

I want something that I can pick up and work on my own step-by-step.

Also, out of curiosity does Trados have good tutorials? I don't think I can afford it right now, but I would like to know if it is well-documented.


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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 09:55
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
Metatexis Feb 24, 2009

I've read several manuals (except Swordfish's) and the one that struck me as the easiest --by far-- was the Metatexis manual. As a matter of fact, I first tried both Wordfast and Trados and it wasn't until I read the Metatexis manual that I decided to use a CAT tool on a regular basis. You can start translating almost immediately because it's very intuitive.

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FarkasAndras
Local time: 16:55
English to Hungarian
+ ...
tutorials and translating Feb 24, 2009

I think basing your CAT choice on which tool has the best tutorial in the opinion of random strangers on the internet is a terrible idea. At least get the tool that IS the best in the opinion of random strangers on the internet. Hopefully, you'll only be using the tutorials/manuals for 1-4 hours, and you will be using the software for hundreds for of hours.

Trados is well-documented in the sense that this forum alone is more than likely to contain the answer to any questions or problems you may have. Not necessarily so with the more obscure programmes.


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xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:55
German to English
+ ...
CAT Tutorials Feb 24, 2009

Take a look at these (in English):

http://leuce.com/tempfile/omegat_intro.swf
http://www.omegat.org/en/tutorial/OmegaT%20for%20Beginners.pdf

And these (in Spanish):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=waW8nXGyUBU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9oRsBcRXflE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8m2_R6L84PE

I am biased, of course.

Marc


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Whisper9999
Local time: 06:55
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Quick questions Feb 24, 2009

I read the OmegaT tutorial and it was, indeed, quite easy to read and informative. One thing that was interesting to me was that you can attach a dictionary. How much flexibility do CAT tools have with their dictionaries? What I mean is: are there even third party dictionaries that you can attach to OmegaT or Metatexis?

Also, I assume the programs vary in how and how well they handle html tags?


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:55
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Ability to search dictionaries Feb 25, 2009

Cristina Coronado wrote:
One thing that was interesting to me was that you can attach a dictionary. How much flexibility do CAT tools have with their dictionaries?


This depends entirely on the format of your dictionary. If your dictionary is in a locked format and it can only be searched using its own program, then you may be out of luck. Some CAT tools like Wordfast may attempt to query such a dictionary program in a hackish sort of way, but whether you're successful depends on the layout of your specific dictionary program.

Most CAT tools have the ability to do concordance searches in external files (usually text files, sometimes also HTML files, and rarely also wordprocessing files). If you can export or resave your dictionary in a plain text format with blank lines between entries, then it may be possible to use the CAT tool's file search function to search the dictionary file.

Marc mentioned OmegaT, so let me use it as an example. In the most recent version, OmegaT 2.0.1, you can search files by either typing your query or by selecting your query and pressing Ctrl+F (find) and Enter. If you know how to write regular expressions (it is easy to learn it) you can do even more useful searches in OmT's search function (eg if you don't know the exact spelling of the search word).

One drawback of OmegaT is that there is only one search shortcut. So if you want to search two locations, you need to either select the new location each time, or copy all your files into two subfolders and select the top-level folder for your search (then both locations will be searched each time).

Programs like Wordfast offer somewhat more flexibility, so you can search different locations using different shortcuts. Unless I'm mistaken, in Wordfast you can search with up to 4 different shortcuts -- (i) the TM, (ii) several folders simultaneously, and (iii-iv) two dictionaries (if you can get them to work).


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Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:55
English to Dutch
+ ...
Trados is very well documented Feb 25, 2009

Cristina Coronado wrote:

Also, out of curiosity does Trados have good tutorials? I don't think I can afford it right now, but I would like to know if it is well-documented.


Yes, Trados is very well documented. There is a manual and a help file included in the programme. It takes quite some time to read it all, but you don't have to read it all to understand the basics. Once you get to work with it, you can learn a lot of other features as you go. If you want to become a 'power user', you can get far if you just study all the materials, the information is really rather extensive.

I recommend to just start working with Trados once you know the basics and take some time off every now and then to learn the rest. That's how I did it.

Unfortunately SDL do not offer demo versions, as fas as I know.


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Poisson rouge
Germany
Local time: 16:55
German to French
+ ...
Wordfast Feb 25, 2009

I think Wordfast is good for beginners because of their very good tutorials / learning material. They have three user's manuals (beginner, intermediate, expert), which is quite good, and screencasts explaining how to use the main functions. I think it's very often a question of what you like best. For example, I tried Metatexis a few weeks ago but found it confusing and didn't find the learning material very helpful, but then I suppose everybody's mind works differently!
Good luck
Fiona


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Susan Welsh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:55
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Dictionaries Feb 25, 2009

Cristina Coronado wrote:
are there even third party dictionaries that you can attach to OmegaT or Metatexis?

Also, I assume the programs vary in how and how well they handle html tags?


I don't know about Metataxis, but OmegaT can attach any electronic dictionary so far as I know.
I won't answer on html tags, because others have broader experience with CATs than I.

Susan


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FarkasAndras
Local time: 16:55
English to Hungarian
+ ...
??? Feb 25, 2009

Susan Welsh wrote:

Cristina Coronado wrote:
are there even third party dictionaries that you can attach to OmegaT or Metatexis?

Also, I assume the programs vary in how and how well they handle html tags?


I don't know about Metataxis, but OmegaT can attach any electronic dictionary so far as I know.
I won't answer on html tags, because others have broader experience with CATs than I.

Susan


Any electronic dictionary? Impossible. What do you even mean?

An example of an electronic dictionary would be the María Moliner Spanish dictionary that comes on a CD and installs on your computer. Then you run it as a separate programme. Same with a buch of Oxford dictionaries, the Encyclopaedia Britannica etc. How would OmegaT interface with any of these? They are not designed to provide input for other software.

Samuel says Wordfast attempts this; I wouldn't get my hopes up. If the sw has keyboard shortcuts WF may be able to call those - but so can you. I can't see how you could get more out of this than being able to use WF's own keyboard shortcuts instead of those of the dictionary sw... not something to write home about.


You might have meant online dictionaries. That is somewhat more realistic as many of them include the search term in the URL so you can just point the browser to a URL like http://www.wordreference.com/es/en/translation.asp?spen=test and be taken right to the search result for "test". Still, you only get a result in a browser window, not in the CAT window.


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Volodymyr Kukharenko
Ukraine
Local time: 17:55
Member (2009)
English to Ukrainian
+ ...
AnyMem Tutorial Feb 25, 2009

Cristina Coronado wrote:

Which of the less expensive CAT programs, i.e. Metatexis, Swordfish, etc., have the best tutorials for someone who has little to no experience with CAT programs? I have done a lot of translation but very little with the CAT programs and need to get up to speed quickly.

I want something that I can pick up and work on my own step-by-step.

Also, out of curiosity does Trados have good tutorials? I don't think I can afford it right now, but I would like to know if it is well-documented.



Here you can find tutorial for AnyMem:

http://www.anymem.com/user-friendly-translation-memory-software/translation-memory-quick-start

It's simple and quick, I guess an hour will be enough to learn how the tool works.


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Susan Welsh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:55
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Go with the experts Feb 25, 2009

FarkasAndras wrote:
You might have meant online dictionaries.


Yes, that's what I meant. Go with what Samuel and Farkas said--I'm out of my league here. Sorry for the confusion.

Susan


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