Alchemy PUBLISHER 3.0 makes a total mess of PDF files
Thread poster: Giuseppe Bellone

Giuseppe Bellone
Local time: 08:44
Member (2009)
English to Italian
+ ...
Feb 2, 2012

Hi all,
after being simply furious about the total lack of answers from the Company because they consider me a NUISANCE (I'm using a decent word!), not a customer who bought the product, here I am once more.
A few days ago I asked for some help because I could not understand why Catalyst 9 didn't handle Word files, but still haven't received any answer.

If I had had a word from them I'd have never written this post!

Before I throw the whole thing away and never open it again for the rest of my life, I'd like to have some impressions or advice from you.

Is there a vague, remote, mild, soft, light, slight, distant, unpredictable possibility to GET A DECENT LAYOUT of the translation of a PDF translated with Publisher 3.0? Or absolutely not? Will the program work at its pleasure and whim for ever? Was it built to work that way perhaps?

Pictures of the final target PDF text are CUT into pieces and thrown around, some are MOVED to another place on the page, text around pictures is never in its proper place, with some mysterious exceptions only.
The simple target text is more or less formatted in the source position, that's the only thing that seems vaguely OK, as long as there are no interruptions or strange bars or missing lines; in other words, the program seems to work only when there are NO special segments, BUT as soon as the slight complication comes out I'll be certain to get a mess of the target text.

I checked all the TAGS while translating, tried to ensure to get their correct position by copying the source sentence (complete with its tags) to the target position to make sure nothing would be touched or moved (I translated only around the tags, just to make sure).

After translating I clean up the translation and extract the translated file, then a Word file is generated and then one should convert it into a final PDF, so they say in the tutorials.

BUT if the total mess is already clearly seen in the Word file one gets after EXTRACTING the translation, HOW can its PDF have a decent layout?...
It can only be a naive dream or perhaps a magic wand should be part of the package!!

And PUBLISHER, so they clearly state in the advertisements and in the tutorials, is specially made to handle WORD, PDF and EXCEL files! And is that what one gets? What a great idea!

I may be the stupidest customer in the world but I imagine that there's a limit to everything.

And last but not least, a well-known problem:

SPELL CHECK WHILE TYPING has never worked and has NOT been fixed so far, or at least despite my repeated emails, no one has told me they had fixed it, after almost TWO years.
So I can check the typos only after the end of the translation and only by CHECKING ONE SEGMENT at a TIME. Can you imagine hundreds and hundreds of segments to be checked by hand, how easy and quick that might be? Great, isn't it?

Isn't this fooling customers, to say the least?

I'm perfectly aware that the solution won't be found immediately, or I have one, actually:

I'll have to use another MORE RELIABLE CAT tool, NOT THIS ONE at all, for the rest of all my days.

Kind regards,


AS KINDLY REQUESTED by Alchemy I update this POST:

After my protests for the bad way Publisher worked Alchemy sent me a complimentary copy of CATALYST 9 and I duly thanked them for the present.

I thought I might use it without problems, but as you know from my previous post sent a few days ago, I simply CAN'T!

As CATALYST 9 can't handle Word files the only thing I could do was to go back to PUBLISHER, what else should I have done? Can Alchemy tell me, perhaps, instead of accusing me of being thankless and unfair?

Although I appreciated their effort and gift, my problems have not been solved after all, and they perfectly knew that!

[Modificato alle 2012-02-02 17:24 GMT]

[Modificato alle 2012-02-02 18:08 GMT]

[Modificato alle 2012-02-02 18:13 GMT]

[Modificato alle 2012-02-02 18:23 GMT]

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Bernard Lieber  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:44
English to French
+ ...
PDF Feb 2, 2012

Hi Guiseppe,

No CAT tool handles pdf files properly, even if they claim to do so, Publisher is one that handles them better but if you want to convert pdf files you'd be better off using ABBY FineReader 11. Anyway, I think it's really stupid to convert pdf files to Word files which is what most converters do, could be any DTP software as source. I always insist on getting the source file, makes life at lot easier.


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Giuseppe Bellone
Local time: 08:44
Member (2009)
English to Italian
+ ...
Thanks Bernard Feb 2, 2012

Hi Bernard,
yes I imagined that and now I'm more than certain, BUT at least I don't like being considered thankless and unfair by the Company when I'm simply telling the truth, and by truth I mean something they already know, and certainly knew even before my protests.

Alchemy, as I said last week, had sent a complimentary copy of Catalyst 9 but (you read my post last week here) unfortunately for the reason I've already indicated I can't use it.

Which is a pity. But after all it's not MY fault.

Une bonne soirée à toi. Merci.


[Modificato alle 2012-02-02 19:39 GMT]

[Modificato alle 2012-02-03 07:17 GMT]

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Alchemy PUBLISHER 3.0 makes a total mess of PDF files

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