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Alternatives to Multiterm Extract?
Thread poster: Claudia Alvis

Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 14:59
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
Oct 21, 2008

I'm thinking of buying Multiterm Extract or any other similar program. I need a tool that can extract terms from a monolingual file and also that can leverage my existing TMs, glossaries and/or bilingual projects to create bilingual glossaries. Multiterm Extract can do that but I would like to know if there are more options out there. Also, does anybody know what's the difference between Multiterm Extract and PhraseFinder?

Thanks,

Claudia


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Sp and Fr to En  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 20:59
Member (2005)
French to English
+ ...
PlusTools Oct 22, 2008

It might be worth looking at the WordFast utility, PlusTools, which is free. I know it's good for extracting terms from monolingual files, I haven't used it for any of the other functions you mention.

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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 14:59
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
PlusTools Oct 22, 2008

Thanks for the recommendation. I used to have PlusTools and Wordfast installed years ago but I've always found Wordfast very intimidating. I guess it's time to give PlusTools another try.

Regards,

Claudia


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 15:59
English to French
+ ...
AntConc + XBench Oct 22, 2008

I think we need to agree that there is no tool that is able to automatically extract terms without any human intervention. Also, I have spoken to a few people who have bought MultiTerm Extract - most of them weren't impressed by it.

I find the best way to compile glossaries is to use the freeware concordancer AntConc. I have used it just recently to compile a termbase of about a thousand terms before starting a large project - it is a large termbase for starters, and it took me about four hours to create it. It is an entirely manual process (I should try and find some time to write a howto for this) and it takes a little more time, but I would say that the difference between using MultiTerm Extract and using AntConc is much like the difference between sweeping the floor and washing it. AntConc will help you find all terms and their variants, and it will even help you find terms that are composed of five or six words. The only downside is that you need to use file formats that allow you to convert them to text files, as that is the filetype AntConc uses.

You need to copy each source term found using AntConc into a text file - put one term per line. Once your list of source terms is complete, place the cursor at the end of the line, hit Tab and enter the target term. This will result in a tabbed text file. Then, you just need to save this file and add it to an XBench project. Of course, you can also import this file into MultiTerm and create a TDB, hassle free. The file will be searchable through XBench, much like you would seach an electronic dictionary.

Since I've discovered this method, I have lost all interest in buying term extraction tools. The software I use is free and gives me as much control as I could possibly dream of - unlike commercial software. The bonus is that AntConc will let you zoom into the context effortlessly and that XBench will later help you check if you have used the established terminology consistently.

You can download the software at the following addresses:

AntConc: http://www.antlab.sci.waseda.ac.jp/antconc_index.html
XBench: http://www.apsic.com/en/products_xbench.html

All the best!

Edit: Not to dis PlusTools, but I have tried it, and for term extraction, it is less than average. It will basically give you a list of strings that are repeated in the file. Any concordancer will give you that...

[Edited at 2008-10-22 17:20]


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Cecilia Falk  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:59
English to Swedish
XBench Oct 22, 2008

Hi Victoria,
I have read your praise of XBench in several posts, and I am very interested in how you use it. I have installed it about a year ago, but not really used it for anything else than checking inconsistencies in TMs. There seems to me that this software offers more than meets the eye, but I have not been able to figure out what.

I save all glossaries in txt format, and have also exported all TM to txt and cleaned them up a bit and use both indexing software (ISYS) and a simple but efficient search tool (Examine) to search glossaries and TMs - a total of some 100 million words in a few seconds.

How does XBench work compared to this?
(This should maybe be a new thread?)

Cecilia


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
For a fast proggie Oct 22, 2008

Claudia Alvis wrote:
I need a tool that can extract terms from a monolingual file and also that can leverage my existing TMs, glossaries and/or bilingual projects to create bilingual glossaries.


For creating a monolingual list of words or phrases, try Tim Craven's ExtPhr32. It converts all text to uppercase but I guess that aids the speed. Lightning fast. Get it here:

http://publish.uwo.ca/~craven/freeware.htm

For attempting to create bilingual lists, convert your TMs to Gettext PO and try PoTerminology from the Translate Toolkit. It is feature rich (read: complex) so I haven't really tried it, but some people are crazy about it:

http://translate.sourceforge.net/wiki/toolkit/poterminology


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 15:59
English to French
+ ...
@ Cecilia Oct 22, 2008

Let's exchange some comments on the software we use. I'll tell you what the difference would be between using your current method and using XBench, and you tell me how useful ISYS is for translation, and perhaps how much it costs as well, seeing as their website will not give me a price unless I contact them (which I am unwilling to do just yet). ISYS seems to be something I could use...

XBench would pretty much replace your two programs, with the added benefit of handling TTX files, bilingual Word documents, etc. It will also let you add TMs, TDBs, glossaries and other bilingual documents compatible with a number of CAT tools in a way that will ensure that search results are presented according to the hierarchy you specified. For instance, I am working on a large project at the moment, and I have added a TDB, a TM and several TTX files to the XBench project. I have set up the TDB as the highest priority resource, which means that the first results I get upon executing a search always come from the TDB. Then, I get results from the TM, and finally, I get results from the TTX documents.

Another added benefit is the quality assurance feature - it lets you check if you have used the terminology consistently throughout your translation, if all segments were translated, if there are identical source segments that were translated to unlike target segments, etc. This feature is pretty complete and you can set it up the way you want. XBench also allows you to take notes of any problems or inconsistencies you found (this eliminates the use of the trusted notebook).

As if that wasn't enough, XBench also has a feature you can customize so that it does searches for you on the Web. For example, I have set this up so that I can search Wordreference from within XBench and I also set up a Google search template that searches parallel texts on the Canadian governments websites. Most of the time, I don't even open my browser because XBench replaces it (it has a basic internal browser). The advantage is that I don't procrastinate on the Web and that my taskbar is neat and tidy.

Also, when you come across a TU that you would like to edit directly in the document it comes from, you can do that directly from withing XBench. You just need to right-click on the result in XBench and click on the Edit Source option. The source document opens (if it is a Word document, Word is launched, if it is a TTX document, then TagEditor is launched) and automatically scrolls to the appropriate segments and highlights it. This considerably speeds up many proofreading and reviewing processes.

I know that many of our colleagues create monster TMs to be used as a reference TM on pretty much all projects. But with XBench, this is not only unnecessary (you can add as many documents to a project as you wish), but it actually becomes counter-productive. XBench displays information on all results in the bottom pane - for TMs, it will display who created the TU, who modified it, when it was created and modified, etc., and even displays text fields and attribute fields. It also displays the names of each document, so you can easily distinguish between the different resources. So, it becomes really practical to use a bunch of small TMs and small TDBs rather than one big mama document.

I hope this helps. I invite you to read the entire XBench manual (it takes only about an hour). XBench is easy to use and the learning curve is tiny, but there are a couple of things you need to be aware of to make the most of XBench. You'll be happy you read it.

All the best!


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Cecilia Falk  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:59
English to Swedish
Thanks Victoria! Oct 23, 2008

Thank you for the in depth explanation. It actually sounds great, and I will definitely take the time to read the manual.

I bought ISYS 6 years ago, and it was quite expensive, around $700. (I have contacted them and asked for the current price, will let you know.) I think there are probably cheaper alternatives but this has worked so well for me that I have not investigated much further. (Have tried Google Desktop but did not like it at all.)

The major advantage with ISYS is that I at any time can search ALL my reference material (glossaries, TMs, bilingual files from EU, etc., some 100 million words) in 5 seconds, and then filter down to the most interesting hits.

Best regards,
Cecilia

PS. Which XBench version do you use? DS.


[Edited at 2008-10-24 13:16]


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 15:59
English to French
+ ...
@ Cecilia Oct 25, 2008

Thanks for the update on ISYS. I am sure I could find uses for ISYS, although I can see it more in a writing environment than in a translation environment.

I always use the latest version of XBench. There are no notable differences between versions - they usually add features and improve the existing ones. They have so far not pulled tricks where they remove a feature to replace it by another (I can't stand that). Every time I install a new version, I am greeted by the same old interface and all features and functions are exactly where they were last time. It is worth learning to use it because that knowledge will most likely serve you for a long time (no going back to school periodically).

All the best!


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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 14:59
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
+Tools and XBench Nov 2, 2008

Thanks to everyone for your very informative comments. I have tried +Tools but I still need to spend more time playing with it. As far as XBench, I also downloaded and began using it after reading Viktoria's posts about it; I really appreciate your help. It is indeed a fantastic software but very intimidating; I'm also use monster-TM's as references so I'll give it another try.

Happy weekend to all.

Claudia


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TrM Hungarian Translations
Hungary
Local time: 21:59
Member (2007)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
My own experiments Nov 4, 2008

Hi,

I have started working on my own tool, mostly driven by curiosity...

The first beta version (or rather, alpha) was made public about a month ago at www.trmkft.hu/en/extract/

The tool is web-based and takes both English and Hungarian .txt files.

Feel free to play around with it, although I must admit there is a lot of room for improvement, hence the modest version number of 0.1

Regards,

Istvan Fulop
TrM Hungarian Translations


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