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What\'s so special about Trados?
Thread poster: Bryan Crumpler

Bryan Crumpler  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:49
Dutch to English
+ ...
Nov 8, 2002

Hi Folks,

I\'ve had several opportunities lately to do some translation jobs, the most recent few of which have explicitly been given to someone else because I don\'t have/use Trados. So much for those clients... But at any rate, the fact of the matter is, I just don\'t have 500+ bucks laying around to shell it out on a Trados package. Furthermore, the evaluation software is rediculously complex to use (especially without a manual or a dongle) and it just doesn\'t seem worth it. Up to this point I\'ve been using Wordfast which is free, easy and has worked quite well I must say. But what exactly is so special about Trados that gets the job done any better?

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Catherine Bolton  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:49
Member (2002)
Italian to English
+ ...
Talk to your customer Nov 8, 2002

Hi Crumpler,

I would explain to the customer that WF and Trados are perfectly compatible. I\'ve merged Trados memories into WF without any problems.

I even received a segmented Trados file from a customer. The file was half English and half Italian: I created my WF memory, went down the page as usual, and voilà! Worked like a charm.

So ask your customers to give you a chance with WF, because it does the same thing as Trados.

And I\'m with you: why shell out 500 bucks when the freeby (albeit not for long!) works just as well, if not better?

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Carina Balbo
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:49
Member (2006)
+ ...
Is Wordfast TOTALLY free??? Nov 8, 2002

I\'ve just been in Wordfast site and there only one version which is downloadable for free, a sample version. But you have to pay for the full version. It is NOT totally free.

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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:49
English to German
+ ...
One of the industry standards - compatibility depends on setup Nov 8, 2002

It\'s fair to say that Trados is very widely distributed. Having used the software for 7+ years, I can tell you it\'s not just their advertising...

Although I don\'t necessarily the use of Trados as obligatory when outsourcing projects, ease of use means that I will prefer those colleagues using the same software. Sure, you can export/import TMs, but depending on the type of project, being able to check a file that\'s been translated using Trados means saving a lot of time compared to running through it one more time.

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Marijke Mayer  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:49
Dutch to English
+ ...
Trados hinges on Word and ASCII Nov 8, 2002

The Trados export consists of *txt files; therefore, I found it\'s eminently possibly to circumvent it.

Hi Crumpler, while I understand you hesitation to purchase Trados, I have to say that the cost has been worth it for me. Though I realise that Trados is expensive, there might be a way around it for you. I can\'t see the customer asking you to use Trados and then deliver the cleaned files, then you might as well use any translation program. Your customer must want the files produced in certain Trados format, i.e. commonly referred as the dirty files, which consists of putting the codes around each TU. If you have the Twinmark font, you could then search and replace these codes for Trados to recognize each TU. For instance you would put YYY in front ZZZ in the middle and VVV at the end and you could replace each by the appropriate Twinmark codes. Then you make the source text hidden text in Word and away you go. If you don\'t understand, just ask the pro! However, I have to warn you that these codes are really sticky if not protected by Trados and it\'s easy to mess them up, Trados is known for that problem, but you could certainly try.

As I did the Trados training, I know a lot about it, only to realise that there are easier ways to circumvent it. . . .


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xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:49
German to English
+ ...
The choice is yours Nov 13, 2002

Hi Crumpler,

Apologies for the late reply - I missed your message initially owing to technical problems.

You first need to decide whether a translation memory application is

beneficial to you at all. Don\'t assume that it\'s only worthwhile if you only

have repetitive texts. I use translation memory most of the time, but seldom

get full sentence matches. I see the benefit in being able to find, instantly,

any word or phrase I\'ve ever encountered before, together with its translation.

If you have decided to buy (or obtain ) a translation memory program, you

then need to select one. Whether Trados is suitable is partly a matter of

taste. Deja Vu, for example, has quite a different philosophy behind it.

Trados also has a wealth of features, such as support for different file

formats. But there are other applications with comparable functions.

In fact, I recently counted twenty-three applications (Trados TWB, Star

Transit, Atril Deja Vu, SDLX, Cypresoft Trans Suite, MultiCorpora Multitrans,

Ecco, Xerox Multilingual Memory Manager, Termseek Translator\'s Intuition,

Bridgeterm Promemoria, ILSP Tr-AID, Sakhr Translator Workbench, Wordfast,

Wordfisher, MetaTexis, Sprint, MemCat, Waikoloa, Rainbow, Foreigndesk, JCAT,

OmegaT and Frankenstein), not counting GUI or website localization tools.

So don\'t let anyone tell you that translation memory = Trados. Many, probably

most of the alternative products support the TMX industry standard for translation memories, which you can use to swap memories between applications. And many of the cheaper alternatives are quite capable of doing the job. Wordfast and Metatexis are particularly worth considering. If you\'re feeling a

little adventurous, you could try OmegaT, a new version of which is about to be released. You might not like it - but as it\'s free, what have you got to lose?


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