Translating JPEG image files
Thread poster: eurolanguagesPt

eurolanguagesPt  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:58
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Apr 1, 2010

When it comes to translating JPEG image files with tables, values and multi-coloured layouts how should a translator respond?
I accepted such a task in the past and it was such a horrendous challenge (with all the tables & values) due to the fact that I couldn’t do copy/paste; I ended up not charging for my work (hours on end) because the agency wasn’t satisfied with my layout.
Everything has to be done from scratch and the potential for errors is tremendous (tables & values)

Thank you for your input.


 

Egils Turks  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 19:58
English to Latvian
+ ...
OCR Apr 1, 2010

Have you thought about using scanner and OCR (Optical Character Recognition) technology to transform the images? E.g., ABBYY FineReader.

Or, just ask agency to supply you with translatable files, or charge per hour.


 

Thomas Ochiltree  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:58
Member (2005)
Latin to English
+ ...
Pre-understanding of facsimile requirement Apr 1, 2010

eurolanguagesPt wrote:I regard acceptance of a translation assignment as NOT containing an implied agreement to produce facsimile (I use the term in its old fashioned sense of exact visual reproduction). Such an agreement should be explicit in advance and factored into the price in advance, following checking by the translator as to whether such reproduction is practical. If you don't feel comfortable with the job then turn it down -- what I do. My agencies are normally comfortable with a "good faith" effort to reproduce a table in a comprehensible form that is NOT a fascimilie.

Good luck.

When it comes to translating JPEG image files with tables, values and multi-coloured layouts how should a translator respond?
I accepted such a task in the past and it was such a horrendous challenge (with all the tables & values) due to the fact that I couldn’t do copy/paste; I ended up not charging for my work (hours on end) because the agency wasn’t satisfied with my layout.
Everything has to be done from scratch and the potential for errors is tremendous (tables & values)

Thank you for your input.


[Edited at 2010-04-01 21:53 GMT]


 

David Eunice  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 01:58
Japanese to English
"Sorry, I'm too busy" sounds like your best response Apr 1, 2010

Egils Turks mentioned
charge per hour.

I don't really like my clients to know how much I make per hour.
Some would be resent paying me that much.

Egils Turks suggested
scanner and OCR

This is just more work for the translator, whose job is to translate.
The agency's duty to the translator is to supply easily translatable materials.

If you OCR, you have a nasty proofreading problem. It is
much easier to do those kinds of tasks in an office where two
people are available, one to read aloud and the other to visually check.

Egils Turks hit the nail on the head
just ask agency to supply you with translatable files


eurolanguagesPt wrote:
When it comes to translating JPEG image files with tables, values and multi-coloured layouts how should a translator respond?


There is no need to respond beyond saying "Sorry, I'm too busy."

Translation is one task and document production is another.
There is no reason that you should feel bad about not being able to reproduce a document.

When I first started in translation, the coordinator would send
marked up hard copy. If it was a table or graphic,
each item would be numbered.
Usually, the non-linguistic data content was not required: it is cheaper to
get a typist to do it, or for one person in an office to read aloud to another.

Somewhere during the computer revolution,
this kind of work got pushed on to the translator.
In fact, many agencies whose viability also depended
on doing layout, went out of business.

The issue you mention is on of the new unreasonable expectations.
As long as there are translators willing to accede, the unreasonableness will continue.

If you want to just translate, be upfront and businesslike with the client:
"I can reproduce the tables in MS-Word for another
$NN for this type of table and $nn for that.
These will only be plain tables. If you want them coloured,
that's extra.
Do you want me to enter the values in the table?
They will be charged at my usual translation rate."


 

Jerónimo Fernández  Identity Verified
English to Spanish
+ ...
Different tasks - Charge per task Apr 2, 2010

In the project that you mention, there were several tasks involved:

1) Making the text ready to translate
2) Translating the text
3) Reproducing the layout of the source text in the translated text

I'd charge my rate per word for translating. On top of that, I'd charge my hourly rate for the other two tasks.

If I can't use OCR for task number 1, I would add some extra to my translation rate, so that I get compensated for the time I spend going from the source file to the translated file.

As for task number 3, if reproducing the layout proves to be too complex for me, I'd offer my client the following possibilities:

a) I can only provide the translation but not the layout, and ask them if they're OK with that.

b) I can outsource the "reproducing the layout" task to a designer/DTP specialist of my confidence, and ask them if they're OK with that. (Of course, my customer should pay for the designer's fee.)

I hope this helps.

Regards,
Jerónimo


 


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