Has anyone succeeded using document alignment in Cafetran?
Thread poster: Mike (de Oliveira) Brady

Mike (de Oliveira) Brady  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Member (2008)
Portuguese to English
May 4

I have been trying to use the alignment feature in Cafetran and have found it impossible.

I have a source document and a target document. I have tried using the "Project type" -> "Align two documents" feature to align these. The source/target pane appears at the bottom of the screen.

(For this experiment, I took some text from the Cafetran website, ran it through Google translate and edited it to require splitting a segment.)

cafetran_screen_01




When I click on start the first segments appear.

When I click to accept this alignment, the segments are populated in the navigation pane and Cafetran moves onto the next segments.

cafetran_screen_02




Problems arise when the segment breaks are different in the source and target documents.

In the example, the source has two sentences where there is one sentence in the target. So, I split the target segment (with the cursor placed at the end of the sentence in the source, as there is no text to split).

cafetran_screen_03




This gives a blank source segment alongside the extra target segment.

cafetran_screen_04




If I try to merge the source text from the source/target pane, using the merge arrow in the central bar, nothing happens. (This is highlighted by the cursor hanging over the tool, as can be seen in the screenshot below.)

Clicking "join source segments" does not work. It is impossible to slide the source text back into alignment in the way I would expect.

cafetran_screen_05



I found I can step on so the source text appears out of sync alongside the target text in the following segment, then merge that source segment and the blank segment above it. But that just introduces another blank segment.

It become unusable.

cafetran_screen_06

cafetran_screen_07

cafetran_screen_08



Surely, the source text should slide up to come into sync again. If not, the above procedure has to be repeated for every segment - becoming more complex if there are additional splits. And don't make a mistake, because there is no way back.

I tried deleting the segment pair with the blank source and populated target, but then I cannot get return to the deleted target text. It is only possible to navigate forwards through the text in the source/target pane. There is no way to navigate backwards.

I've raised this as a ticket with Cafetran and the replies suggest there is no problem. These screenshots hopefully demonstrate the problem I have encountered.

And there are other problems - one mistake in moving forward through the source/target pane or splitting segments and it is impossible to recover.

Has anyone been able to use the alignment tool?

If so, how have you overcome these problems, if you have encountered them?


 

Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
English to French
+ ...
  May 4

Yes, I have used CafeTran's progressive alignment in the past when auditing available alignment solutions, and found it too unwieldy for anything other than short documents. But this can be said for any alignment solution that relies too much on manual intervention.

CafeTran also offers an automatic alignment feature, but there is no means for manual adjustments I think, so its usefulness is limited as well.

I have since turned my attention to other, more automated alig
... See more
Yes, I have used CafeTran's progressive alignment in the past when auditing available alignment solutions, and found it too unwieldy for anything other than short documents. But this can be said for any alignment solution that relies too much on manual intervention.

CafeTran also offers an automatic alignment feature, but there is no means for manual adjustments I think, so its usefulness is limited as well.

I have since turned my attention to other, more automated alignment solutions. On the off occasion I need to make a document alignment, I mostly use the LF Aligner (but other online/offline, free/paid alignment utilities exist). But whatever the chosen solution, the resulting TMX can be used in CafeTran Espresso, or any CAT tool for that matter.

Even if its alignment workflow is lacking (and I would not mind if it was simply removed), since this feature can easily be replaced by other software, I don't think this is a big issue. It certainly does not change the fact CafeTran is an excellent CAT tool.

So, my suggestion is, since you have tested CafeTran's alignment feature and found it unusable, just find the alignment tool that suits your needs, which can be completely decoupled from the CAT tool you choose to use.

Jean

[Edited at 2020-05-04 19:42 GMT]
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Igor Kmitowski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 17:23
Member (2016)
English to Polish
+ ...
New version May 4

You might check the latest version of CafeTran. There have been some improvements with the alignment feature since the older 2019 version was released. Also, if two documents don't have big differences, choosing the automatic segmentation instead of the progressive one might be a solution.

Hans Lenting
 

Hans Lenting  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Member (2006)
German to Dutch
Looks fine with automatic segmentation May 5

Untitled

Perhaps this should be made the default segmentation workflow?


[Edited at 2020-05-05 08:29 GMT]


 

Mike (de Oliveira) Brady  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Member (2008)
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Your example doesn't include any difference in segmentation May 5

Your example doesn't include any difference in segmentation.

The problem occurs where a source contains two sentences where the target has only one, as in the example I gave. Even progressive alignment works when every source segment maps directly to every target segment, but falls down when it is not so simple.

I've been trying to apply automatic alignment to my example, but cannot find the settings, nor anything in help or in the Cafetran alignment documentation her
... See more
Your example doesn't include any difference in segmentation.

The problem occurs where a source contains two sentences where the target has only one, as in the example I gave. Even progressive alignment works when every source segment maps directly to every target segment, but falls down when it is not so simple.

I've been trying to apply automatic alignment to my example, but cannot find the settings, nor anything in help or in the Cafetran alignment documentation here: https://cafetran.freshdesk.com/support/solutions/folders/6000231601

How do you run automatic alignment? I would like to see if it will work when the situation is more like real life.

Hans Lenting wrote:

Untitled

Perhaps this should be made the default segmentation workflow?


[Edited at 2020-05-05 08:29 GMT]
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Jean Dimitriadis  Identity Verified
English to French
+ ...
Automatic segmentation May 5

Dashboard menu > Workflow > Align two documents, then select Automatic segmentation instead of Progressive segmentation under Segmentation in the dialog that allows you to select the files to align.

 

Mike (de Oliveira) Brady  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Member (2008)
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Solved: Automatic segmentation does enable separate manipulation of source and target segments May 6

Thanks Jean.

I've now been able to run the automatic segmentation on my example files shown in my first post using the method your described.

Cafetran misaligns the segments where two source segments equate to one target segment, as with segments 2 and 3 in the following screenshot. But this is not terminal, as with progressive segmentation.

Screenshot 2020-05-05 at 21.20.17


I was able to merge source segments 2 and 3 and the following segments did slide up (unlike in the progressive alignment example I first posted)

Screenshot 2020-05-05 at 22.03.40


I was also able to do the opposite and split the target segment into two (with the cursor in the source segment at the end of the line, otherwise that would also split). This created a blank source segment alongside the new target segment.

I was then able to join the blank source segment to the segment above it did slide up the segments below, as shown below (see the new segment 3). I have also edited the target text in the editing pane.

Screenshot 2020-05-05 at 21.30.09


I've just tried with my real world files and have been able to go through manually fixing the alignment just as I wanted.

There is an oddity in that the arrows are not present for jumping on 25 segments at a time or going to the last segment, but that's a minor inconvenience.

So the solution is to use automatic segmentation.

It would be good if this information was available on the Cafetran instructions site, but at least we have this post here for anyone else.

[Edited at 2020-05-06 01:05 GMT]


 


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