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Language settings in Word - how does it work?
Thread poster: ViktoriaG

ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 03:01
English to French
+ ...
May 4, 2006

Hello,

I am wondering how language settings work in Word. When I translate text from English to French, even when I specifiy French as the default language, most of the time, the rules for this language are not applied in open segments. There is a word in French, "dont", and when I type it, Word automatically changes it to "don't", as if it was assuming that I am typing in English and I forgot the apostrophe - which is NOT the case. The funniest part of this is when Word corrects this in a segment, and then, a few segments later, it fails to correct it. As if sometimes it felt like applying rules and sometimes it doesn't feel like it. Funny, eh?

I would like to know if anybody has a solution for this, and if someone would be so kind as to explain how language settings work in Word and why the language rules seem to not work properly when using Word along with Trados (Workbench). Is there something I am doing wrong?

FYI, I am using WinXP and Word 2000. My language is set at French, I am translating an English file into French.

Is there a conflict between Trados and Word that is causing this problem?

Thanks a bunch!

[Edited at 2006-05-04 00:45]


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 10:01
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Some suggestions May 4, 2006

Yesterday I had the same problem with Wordfast, and a colleague here pointed out, that in Tools > Language > define language you have to untick the checkbox at the bottom (automatical recognition).
I had forgotten this too, because I had been using the same installation of Word for three years and got a new machine only a few weeks ago.
Another feature you should try is in Tools > Automatical corrections (I don't know how it is called in English version of Word). Switch off automatical corrections when writing and try, if it helps.
But, alas, I'm no Word-expert!
Regards
Heinrich


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Anne Grimes
United States
Local time: 03:01
Member (2005)
French to English
+ ...
I agree.. May 4, 2006

That exact same thing was happening to me just after I installed Word 2003 a few weeks ago, and I did just what Heinrich suggests above, and it worked. It no longer "corrects" my writing when it thinks I made a mistake. Anne.

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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:01
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Don´t forget the styles! May 4, 2006

You can do what you want in Word - and this is the biggest dsadvantage of this program!

When a user defines a style - let´s say a style "Paragraph" with Arial 10 pt, single line spacing, and English as a language and then ticks the "auto language recognition" box and a next user goes on and formats the text with this style to Times New Roman and French, but does not change the style defintion, the mess begins.
And nearly all user do so - are overriding styles. This is improper use of Word.

To avoid such problems:

  • Check the styles, set at least the language to desired one.
  • In language options of each style deselect the automatical language recognition, if it is checked.
  • In style defintion deselct the automatical update function, if selected.
  • After you are finished with the styles, press CTRL+A to select the whole document.
  • Chose the language setting from Tools menu and once again select the proper language. Make sure, that both checkboxes (spell checking AND automatic recognition are DESELECTED).

Now Word should behave as it is supposed to.

But you cannot expect any software to do what you expect it to do, when you do not tell it, what you want. This means it is not enough to switch the PC on, start the software and start to work. This does not even work for a car - usually you need at least a brief looking on what is where and how it works in a new car to be able to drive it safely. Software makes not a big difference here. And software (especially Word) comes with a huge manual, very god to use - the help files. When you don´t know how it works, ask Word - Word help is still one of the best you can find in software.

Regards
Jerzy


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 09:01
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
dont vs don't May 4, 2006

Look up AutoText (I have a German version and it is Extras - between Format and Table - argh ... I feel all thumbs). You will have a gazzillion of silent corrections, starting with (c) > ©, then there's Akcessoir (sic!) > Accessoire and on it goes in my German little autotext helper.

Just silence them all.

smo


PS: Peut-etre un Word quebecois serait une solution tout a fait preferable dans Votre cas;)

[Edited at 2006-05-04 14:48]


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Clare Barnes  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 09:01
Swedish to English
+ ...
Invaluable site! May 4, 2006

After an evening spent wrestling with text boxes and disappearing text (how was I supposed to Word layers the bleeping things!) I came across this site:

http://wordtips.vitalnews.com/Pages/T0834_Selecting_a_Language.html

Thoroughly recommended for when Word starts trying to "think" for itself (the link is to the page that I guess might be relevant here).


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 03:01
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks to all May 4, 2006

Thanks Clare for the link! Vito and Heinrich, thanks for the suggestions!

Your suggestions correct part of my problem - but not all :'(

See, when I type quotes, Word always automatically puts the regular (English) ones, and I have to Insert - Special character almost EVERY TIME because in French, we use the rounded quotation marks. Also, in French, before a colon, we have to add an "espace insécable" (don't remember what it's called in English) and when the language settings are correct, Word automatically inserts this tiny space - but half the time, it fails to do so, and I have to insert it myself (Alt-Ctrl-Space). French is already much harder to type than English, because of all the accents (ïàé), it doesn't have to be slowed down more than this...

I wish I could use OpenOffice with Workbench just like I use Word... Open Office is SO MUCH better - and when I set languages and correctors, it does exactly what you ask it to, every time. Plus, the wordcount takes textboxes into account - no more fighting with clients over unpaid words. Sadly, for now, only TagEditor is compatible with OO...

Thanks for everything!


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:01
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Why don't you spend some time learnig Word before you critisize it? May 4, 2006

If you managed to set up the corrections with OO, do the same with Word.
Use Word help, it is so much better than OO-help
Sorry, but I cannot help myself - please give it a try!
Word does exactly what I expect it to do - corrects my quotation marks to such as used in Poland, when I type in Polish, and to German style, when I type in German. When I have some French words in my text (ie the whole name of FIA) I set the language for those few words to French and get them spell checked. If I need a text I use veery often I use auto-text option. And I use autocorrections for my mistakes I make very often. I use styles to format my document quickly... And I fail to see how OO is better here. It is different, but not better or worser - simply different. This is as would we now start to discuss if a diesel or gasoline car is better.

Please forgive my reaction, but I really can't help myself - many times we have given here advices, and almost every time you can read "ask Word for help - the help file ist very good". But it seems no one listens... And this makes sad, really.

Thank you for your understanding
Kind regards
Jerzy

PS
In a very easy way you can create you own shortcuts for often used functions (even for inserting a single character) in Word. Once again - consult the help.

[Edited at 2006-05-04 19:37]


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 09:01
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
I wish I could use OpenOffice with Workbench just like I use Word... May 5, 2006

Once we finish with Oo 2.0.x build (target end of may) I will look into this direction. After all, Trados is nothing more (or less) that an API with underlying implementations. If there's anybody out there ("Knock, knock ... Hullo? ....") going the same direction, I would appreciate to get in contact.

Right now the OpenOffice localisation landscape is still at the level of poEdit and similar.

I wonder if WordFast would not be the right address for this kind of business opportunity...

smo


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 09:01
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
Red ears alert.... May 5, 2006

That's what I usually get when I hear somebody say:"Well, XYZ is Sooo easy..." - it does not take (as in your case) express hint of RTFM to get my ears burning. I dont think that was your intention - it so depressing to say same things all over again, I know... So familiar. Just look at priests and their sunday (firday, Saturday...) sermons (g). And yet the believing. they just keep sinning. Soooo stupid, dont they ever learn....

But then again, playing Catcher in the Rye can be fun, can get you actually famous.

One thing is clear, our friend from Quebec has it easier with OpenOffice than with Word. Period.

smo

PS: so how's that AutoText feature again...?



[Edited at 2006-05-05 12:04]


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