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Thinking of giving up on Wordfast - any recommendations on selecting another CAT tool?
Thread poster: Comunican

Comunican
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
Catalan to English
+ ...
Jun 16, 2009

After using Wordfast for a few years, I have finally decided that it has too many errors and inconsistencies (not showing up 100% matches being the latest very irritating example). I have to write for support over some or other problem several times a month, which doesn't seem right.

Had anyone done a study of the features, benefits and drawbacks of each of the different mainstream CAT tools, please?

I'm especially looking for reliability, ease of use and a package that does not dominate the whole PC with unauthorised tweaks to settings in other programs etc...

Please let me know if you know of anything.

Many thanks


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Jorge Aguilar Juarez  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 20:16
German to Spanish
check this out Jun 16, 2009

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/portal/pls/portallive/docs/1/7307707.PDF

it's from 2006 but still one of the best studies someone has made so far!

cheers,
Jorge


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Epameinondas Soufleros  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 11:16
Member (2008)
English to Greek
+ ...
Across Jun 16, 2009

Try across. It is a comprehensive solution and performs, according to me, even better than TRADOS. And the new version is due soon.

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Antoní­n Otáhal
Local time: 10:16
Member (2005)
English to Czech
+ ...
Pretty individual Jun 16, 2009

First of all - thanks to Jorge. Interesting stuff. On the other hand, I do not think it is a good guide for actually choosing a tool.

We are all different, with different needs, and types of texts we translate. Personal idiosyncrasies play an important role as well.

Moreover, I doubt it that any of freelancers have time to keep really well-informed overview of more than a few tools.

Conclusion: you have to experiment yourself to find a tool which you like so much that you are ready to pay the price the vendor wants for it. If you cooperate with agencies, it will not hurt to find out what their favourite tools are. It may sound trivial, but without involving one's personal preferences, it is hard to say more.

HTH

Antonin


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Comunican
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
Catalan to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for the link - useful Jun 16, 2009

Jorge Aguilar Juarez wrote:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/portal/pls/portallive/docs/1/7307707.PDF

it's from 2006 but still one of the best studies someone has made so far!

cheers,
Jorge


Thanks Jorge - the table "Evaluation of four TM systems according to functional and non-functional criteria" is especially useful. (and I'm amazed that Deja Vu comes out so so well - In a trial I did a couple of years, I never encountered such a complex and unintuitive software package!)

Many thanks for the helpful info.
C


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LuciaC
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
English to Italian
+ ...
100% matches not showing up Jun 16, 2009

This happens to me regularly with Trados 2007 and it is extremely annoying indeed. For this and other reasons (including the license system - dead laptop, couldn't return the license, no reply from the company etc) I was just thinking it is about time to move to Wordfast... Some of my Swiss clients are looking into Transit at the moment.

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Comunican
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
Catalan to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
interesting (not sure why every reply here needs to have a title!!) Jun 16, 2009

LuciaC wrote:

This happens to me regularly with Trados 2007 and it is extremely annoying indeed. For this and other reasons (including the license system - dead laptop, couldn't return the license, no reply from the company etc) I was just thinking it is about time to move to Wordfast... Some of my Swiss clients are looking into Transit at the moment.


Hi Lucia
Thanks, that is very interesting... I have been wondering if all these CAT tools are deficient in some way, so your experience is interesting...

I will investigate Transit...


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Piotr Bienkowski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 10:16
Member (2005)
English to Polish
+ ...
Try Swordfish Jun 16, 2009

www.maxprograms.com - You can try it for a month with all features and without limitation of TM size.

Excellent support from its developers and from swordfish_support at yahoogroups

A very different environment if you are used to working in MS Word, but even so, worth trying.

Regards,

Piotr


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David Turner  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:16
French to English
+ ...
Strange, ... Jun 16, 2009

[quote]Comunican wrote:

Jorge Aguilar Juarez wrote:
I'm amazed that Deja Vu comes out so so well - In a trial I did a couple of years, I never encountered such a complex and unintuitive software package!)


... in that case, why most of the tools since then, including SDLX, Wordfast Pro and now SDL Trados Studio, have tried to copy-cat the DV approach.
But if you don't like Deja Vu, you could try MemoQ which is the next best thing by a long chalk, IMHO.
Dave


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Comunican
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
Catalan to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Pointless titles! Jun 16, 2009

David Turner wrote:


But if you don't like Deja Vu, you could try MemoQ which is the next best thing by a long chalk, IMHO.
Dave


Thanks David, will look into it


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 09:16
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Go for MemoQ! Jun 16, 2009

David Turner wrote:
... most of the tools since then, including SDLX, Wordfast Pro and now SDL Trados Studio, have tried to copy-cat the DV approach.
But if you don't like Deja Vu, you could try MemoQ which is the next best thing by a long chalk, IMHO.


MemoQ is missing a few features that I depend on in Déjà Vu (most notably the exportable RTF tables for external editing or comment feedback, though that should be included by fall and databases with N languages). However, in many respects, it is actually a better tool, depending on what you need exactly. And the support from Kilgray is absolutely first rate. With the state of the CAT world as it is right now, my best recommendation in most cases to both freelance translators, agencies and companies/organizations is to get MemoQ and enjoy the difference from whatever you used before. If nothing else the better support.


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Claudio Porcellana  Identity Verified
Italy
MemoQ Jun 16, 2009

thanks for the suggestion Kevin
I'm testing it and it seems very good
even if I had a crash, reopening the file I didn't notice any data loss
I have only to test if it works well with DNS
the only issue, but may be I didn't find the right way,
is that it doesn't automatically traslate numbers, I mean simple ones as 1450 or so
I really appreciate the customization capability, even of the GUI buttons/fonts etc
an option lacking on Trados and many other CAT

Claudio

[Modificato alle 2009-06-16 09:39 GMT]


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:16
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Good support! Jun 16, 2009

Kevin Lossner wrote:
With the state of the CAT world as it is right now, my best recommendation in most cases to both freelance translators, agencies and companies/organizations is to get MemoQ and enjoy the difference from whatever you used before. If nothing else the better support.

But Kevin, you surely miss a vital point: SDL Trados have the widest support network of all! Give it a try! Their website is here!.


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Tony Pratschke
Ireland
Local time: 09:16
Irish to English
+ ...
Trados Service to paying customers Jun 16, 2009

LuciaC wrote:

This happens to me regularly with Trados 2007 and it is extremely annoying indeed. For this and other reasons (including the license system - dead laptop, couldn't return the license, no reply from the company etc) I was just thinking it is about time to move to Wordfast... Some of my Swiss clients are looking into Transit at the moment.


I purchased SDL Trados 2007 about two years ago. My main language pairing is English - Irish (Gaelic) [EN - GA] and I specified that when I downloaded the software. There was no Irish, but Gaelic (sic!), Welsh, Scottish. This meant that I could not create reusable TMs with GA. One customer service agent even had the cheek to suggest that I use Turkish and pretend it was Irish! I wonder has this happened to any other translators of lesser spoken languages?

After eighteen months of trying to find a customer service agent who would actually accept my problem and try to help me, I gave up and wrote an angry letter to this web site asking for the experiences of other translators using Trados who worked with lesser spoken languages. I had a reply from Trados within 48 hours. A little progress was made but that soon broke down again. My earlier message to this web site seems to have disappeared - I wonder why!!!

After a computer crash two weeks ago, largely due to a conflict between Windows Vista (aaaarghhhhhh!"!!) and Trados (ditto), I entered a new query on the Trados web site a little over a week ago. I had renewed my Maintenance Service Agreement with Trados but now, ten days after my query was registered on the Trados support site with a promise that the issue would be addressed within 2 working days, I still find no response from Trados. The license department has threatened that they may not re-issue the activation code because I didn't return the previous one - how could I when the computer crashed and I had to reformat my hard disk. Even though I have paid for my service agreement Trados is also threatening to charge me extra!

This is totally unacceptable behaviour. I would not recommend Trados to any translator. It may be useful for agencies who, even though they do not speak my language, may hope that Trados will enable them to pretranslate future files and thereby reduce my fee. Buy Trados if you want to enlist for this kind of modern slavery.

Throughout all this hassle, I have used OmegaT. It is free, legal, open source software as approved of by the EU. It is designed to cope with many different languages and is the only software that I have found (and I have searched!) that recognises Irish (Gaelic) as a separate language within the family of Celtic languages and quite separate and distinct from other European languages. I can honestly say that OmegaT has never, ever let me down and it boasts a very active and supportive community of translators who willingly share their expertise and their experience.

I don't hold much hope that this message will survive too long on this forum. If anyone wishes to make contact with me just click on my name and find my email address.

Blessings and light!

Tony Pratschke

[Edited at 2009-06-16 11:46 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-06-16 11:46 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-06-16 11:49 GMT]


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Comunican
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:16
Catalan to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! (Pointless obligatory title!) Jun 16, 2009

Tony Pratschke wrote:

LuciaC wrote:

This happens to me regularly with Trados 2007 and it is extremely annoying indeed. For this and other reasons (including the license system - dead laptop, couldn't return the license, no reply from the company etc) I was just thinking it is about time to move to Wordfast... Some of my Swiss clients are looking into Transit at the moment.


I purchased SDL Trados 2007 about two years ago. My main language pairing is English - Irish (Gaelic) [EN - GA] and I specified that when I downloaded the software. There was no Irish, but Gaelic (sic!), Welsh, Scottish. This meant that I could not created reusable TMs with GA. One customer service agent even had the cheek to suggest that I use Turkish and pretend it was Irish! I wonder has this happened to any other translators of lesser spoken languages?

After eighteen months of trying to find a customer service agent who would actually accept my problem and try to help me, I gave up and wrote an angry letter to this web site asking for the experiences of other translators using Trados who worked with lesser spoken languages. I had a reply from Trados within 48 hours. A little progress was made but that soon broke down again. My earlier message to this web site seems to have disappeared - I wonder why!!!

After a computer crash two weeks ago, largely due to a conflict between Windows Vista (aaaarghhhhhh!"!!) and Trados (ditto), I entered a new query on the Trados web site a little over a week ago. I had renewed my Maintenance Service Agreement with Trados but now I now find, ten days after my query was registered on the Trados support site with a promise that the issue would be addressed within 2 working days, I still find no response from Trados. The license department has threatened that they may not re-issue the activation code because I didn't return the previous one - how could I when the computer crashed and I had to reformat my hard disk. Even though I have paid for my service agreement Trados is also threatening to charge me extra!

This is totally unacceptable behaviour. I would not recommend Trados to any translator. It may be useful for agencies who, even though they do not speak my language, may hope that Trados will enable them to pretranslate future files and thereby reduce my fee. Buy Trados if you want to enlist for this kind of modern slavery.

Throughout all this hassle, I have used OmegaT. It is free, legal, open source software as approved of by the EU. It is designed to cope with many different languages and is the only software that I have found (and I have searched!) that recognises Irish (Gaelic) as a separate language within the family of Celtic languages and quite separate and distinct from other European languages. I can honestly say that OmegaT has never, ever let me down and it boasts a very active and supportive community of translators who willingly share their expertise and their experience.

I don't hold much hope that this message will survive too long on this forum. If anyone wishes to make contact with my just click on my name and find my email address.

Blessings and light!

Tony Pratschke

[Edited at 2009-06-16 11:46 GMT]


Thanks Tony - I have to say on the two occasions when I had to use Trados on-site at an agency, I found it to be cumbersome and heavy-handed, which is why I went to Wordfast, which ia ctually quite light and unintrusive. But I just get so many problems with Wordfast, it's frustrating.
I will look at OmegaT.
Many thanks for the tip.


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