A very useful aid for producing text
Thread poster: Barnaby Capel-Dunn
Barnaby Capel-Dunn  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:55
French to English
Apr 10, 2003

I would like to draw your attention to a resource – shareware actually – which I find extraordinarily useful. I must make it clear right from the start that although I am a great fan of this software (Ultimashell) and try to “promote” it whenever I can, I have absolutely no financial interest in it whatsoever (except for getting to test the beta versions for nothing!). Ultimashell is not free. It costs just under $50 but proz.com members can get a 30% discount by going to this link: http://www.regsoft.net/purchase.php3?productid=38940&pc=14W0n

And of course you can download and try it free of charge for 30 days from http://www.flashpeak.com/ushell/ushell.htm so there’s no risk involved.

Just one other comment on the financial front: there are very few products like this on the market. In my no doubt biased opinion, they do not come near to rivalling Ultimashell and they cost at least three times as much!

So much for the blurb. What exactly is Ultimashell? Well, first of all it is not aimed SPECIFICALLY at translators. It is not a CAT tool, for example. It is rather a set of automation tools designed to speed up the process of generating text in particular, and for moving around on the computer in general. At its heart, however, lies an extraordinarily powerful text completion module. Autocompletion is of course the idea behind MS Word’s AutoText, but Ultimashell is infinitely more powerful, much faster to use and amongst other advantages can be used in virtually any Windows application. It can be a real boon when working in Access or Excel, for example. Among many other things, you can instruct it to automatically learn words or phrases of a given length once they have been used a given number of times, or (often more useful) decide yourself which words/phrases it is to learn; you can decide how many words/phrases are to be prompted and you can choose where the prompt window is to appear. There is virtually no limit to the length of the phrase to “learn”.



Is there a down side? Well, you have to remember that Ultimashell was not created specifically with translators in mind. It is also aimed at software developers, medical transcriptionists, people who for one reason or another have difficulty in typing (physical handicap, unfamiliar language, and so on). This means that some of the features will be more useful than others. For example, I personally do not use the shorthand expander or the professional library features very much, but others may find them very useful. Similarly, the language libraries are paradoxically probably not very useful to translators. Again, you may not want to use all or even any of the array of Windows utilities. My initial reaction was to steer clear of them (I take time to get to grips with new things!) but I have since found two of them in particular to be real godsends: the multiple clipboard (which complements autocompletion very well and is one of the best I have seen), and the “alias” component which allows you to do all sorts of things in Windows with the click of a mouse or the touch of a key. OK, neither of these components is particularly original but they are both very good examples of their kind and fit seamlessly into the application as a whole.

In short, it does take a little time to discover what is and what isn’t useful for your particular situation. In that sense, it’s a bit like Word itself – you may only ever use 50% of its capabilities! The Help file is very detailed and the developer always makes a point of answering questions promptly. I myself would be happy to help out (work permitting) with problems which are not too technical in nature, but I don’t pretend to know all the answers!

To conclude, I’m not saying that Ultimashell has revolutionised my working experience – only a new brain could do that – but I do think it is one of the most interesting and useful applications I have come across.



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andrewgok
Mexico
German to Spanish
+ ...
Thank you, I am trying it and find it wonderful. Apr 11, 2003

Quote:


On 2003-04-10 19:30, hessey wrote:

I would like to draw your attention to a resource – shareware actually – which I find extraordinarily useful. I must make it clear right from the start that although I am a great fan of this software (Ultimashell) and try to “promote” it whenever I can, I have absolutely no financial interest in it whatsoever (except for getting to test the beta versions for nothing!). Ultimashell is not free. It costs just under $50 but proz.com members can get a 30% discount by going to this link: http://www.regsoft.net/purchase.php3?productid=38940&pc=14W0n

And of course you can download and try it free of charge for 30 days from http://www.flashpeak.com/ushell/ushell.htm so there’s no risk involved.

Just one other comment on the financial front: there are very few products like this on the market. In my no doubt biased opinion, they do not come near to rivalling Ultimashell and they cost at least three times as much!

So much for the blurb. What exactly is Ultimashell? Well, first of all it is not aimed SPECIFICALLY at translators. It is not a CAT tool, for example. It is rather a set of automation tools designed to speed up the process of generating text in particular, and for moving around on the computer in general. At its heart, however, lies an extraordinarily powerful text completion module. Autocompletion is of course the idea behind MS Word’s AutoText, but Ultimashell is infinitely more powerful, much faster to use and amongst other advantages can be used in virtually any Windows application. It can be a real boon when working in Access or Excel, for example. Among many other things, you can instruct it to automatically learn words or phrases of a given length once they have been used a given number of times, or (often more useful) decide yourself which words/phrases it is to learn; you can decide how many words/phrases are to be prompted and you can choose where the prompt window is to appear. There is virtually no limit to the length of the phrase to “learn”.



Is there a down side? Well, you have to remember that Ultimashell was not created specifically with translators in mind. It is also aimed at software developers, medical transcriptionists, people who for one reason or another have difficulty in typing (physical handicap, unfamiliar language, and so on). This means that some of the features will be more useful than others. For example, I personally do not use the shorthand expander or the professional library features very much, but others may find them very useful. Similarly, the language libraries are paradoxically probably not very useful to translators. Again, you may not want to use all or even any of the array of Windows utilities. My initial reaction was to steer clear of them (I take time to get to grips with new things!) but I have since found two of them in particular to be real godsends: the multiple clipboard (which complements autocompletion very well and is one of the best I have seen), and the “alias” component which allows you to do all sorts of things in Windows with the click of a mouse or the touch of a key. OK, neither of these components is particularly original but they are both very good examples of their kind and fit seamlessly into the application as a whole.

In short, it does take a little time to discover what is and what isn’t useful for your particular situation. In that sense, it’s a bit like Word itself – you may only ever use 50% of its capabilities! The Help file is very detailed and the developer always makes a point of answering questions promptly. I myself would be happy to help out (work permitting) with problems which are not too technical in nature, but I don’t pretend to know all the answers!

To conclude, I’m not saying that Ultimashell has revolutionised my working experience – only a new brain could do that – but I do think it is one of the most interesting and useful applications I have come across.





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J. Calzado
Local time: 14:55
English to Spanish
+ ...
Does it work only for English? Apr 11, 2003

Or it also works for other languages? I\'d try this myself in my computer, but I actually can\'t do it at the moment due to different reasons. If it only supports English, I would not be really interested in buying it.



Regards


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Barnaby Capel-Dunn  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:55
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
It works with most languages Apr 11, 2003

Quote:


On 2003-04-11 10:43, JCD wrote:

Or it also works for other languages? I\'d try this myself in my computer, but I actually can\'t do it at the moment due to different reasons. If it only supports English, I would not be really interested in buying it.



Regards





Dear JCD

As far as I know it will work with all main languages



Good luck!



Barnaby

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A very useful aid for producing text

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