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End of PDF editing problems?
Thread poster: Michele Fauble
Michele Fauble  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:39
Member (2006)
Norwegian to English
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Oct 23, 2012

"The new Word 2013 can open PDF files, edit them there, and then save them as either DocX files or PDFs. When opened in Word, the file retains the structure of the PDF file, even for elements such as tables. This advance will be a big plus for many users, who can simply open a PDF and get straight to work."

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2012663/10-awesome-new-additions-in-office-2013.html


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:39
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
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Hype until I see it Oct 23, 2012

Well, oh well... We'll see! Thanks for sharing it anyway.

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Steve Kerry  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:39
German to English
I'll believe it when I see it... Oct 23, 2012

If only.. I have never come across a pdf converter yet - Adobe's own included - that worked on any but the simplest of documents. And those lovely, smudged, fax-based pdfs covered in scribbled handwritten notes? Forget it!

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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:39
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
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Same with HTML Oct 23, 2012

Some years ago, their advertising surely said that one would be able to seamlessly open and save HTML pages.

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Rolf Keller
Germany
Local time: 08:39
English to German
Not 100% true Oct 23, 2012

A simple fact: PDF files do not include all information needed for fully-fledged editing functions.

Example: Comfortable editing means working with paragraphs. This is impossible, because PDF files do not include info on where paragraphs start and end. A PDF file is by definition a collection of word or line snippets.

Adobe Acrobat 11 creates PDF files that are somewhat "better" in this respect. But ...


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xxxchristela
And what if... Oct 23, 2012

translated text is 30% longer?

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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 09:39
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
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Not a good idea IMO Oct 23, 2012

Pdf was meant to be non-editable, and there are good reasons to keep it as such. Otherwise we will need a new format that is again non-editable, i.e. for invoices.

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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 23:39
English to German
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My thoughts, too. Oct 23, 2012

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Not a good idea IMO

Pdf was meant to be non-editable, and there are good reasons to keep it as such. Otherwise we will need a new format that is again non-editable, i.e. for invoices.


Or CVs, contracts, personal documents...


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 08:39
French to German
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And mine too... Oct 23, 2012

Nicole Schnell wrote:

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Not a good idea IMO

Pdf was meant to be non-editable, and there are good reasons to keep it as such. Otherwise we will need a new format that is again non-editable, i.e. for invoices.


Or CVs, contracts, personal documents...


To which I may add that translating from a PDF should be the last option, not the first and often the only one.


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LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:39
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
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PDFs were meant to be platform-independent on a free reader... Oct 23, 2012

...as opposed to, say, Word docs that usually require - well, Word. At least that's my impression. The security features were just added capabilities. I would think that they will stay in place (e.g., features settable in Acrobat preventing editing, printing, capturing text by copying, etc.). Very likely the only PDFs that will be editable will be those designed to be editable, or where the author didn't know or care about security settings.
Of course, you can make Word docs non-editable, too (by requiring a password to make changes).


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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 05:39
English to Portuguese
+ ...
InFix does it Oct 23, 2012

Rolf Keller wrote:
A simple fact: PDF files do not include all information needed for fully-fledged editing functions.

Example: Comfortable editing means working with paragraphs. This is impossible, because PDF files do not include info on where paragraphs start and end. A PDF file is by definition a collection of word or line snippets.


christela wrote:
translated text is 30% longer?



I have been saying it for ages, but few people get the idea: Microsoft Word is - and always was - a word processor. It's the state-of-the-art version of the typewriter. Though it has received a zillion enhancements (compare any modern car with a 1906 Oldsmobile), it still clings to several principles of operating a typewriter.

DTP applications draw from a completely different concept, the paste-up studio, described and illustrated here. The pioneering PageMaker, and its son InDesign, are exactly this paradigm transported to virtual reality. Later DTP apps have other paradigms, unparallelled in real life.

Bottom line is that if MS Word opens and edits PDF files, fine! One can use it to edit glitches or make minor changes in them. However Word will always lack proper DTP tools because of its word processor structure.

Translation often causes text to shrink or expand. Word processors usually reflow blocks of text spanning across more than one page, so the layout will be a mess. If it opens the PDF text blocks split into lines, this will be a worse nightmare to translate and align (graphically, not the TM).

If your PDF was created with a resource-laden DTP app, you won't have them in Word to adjust these results accurately.

InFix was developed as a PDF editor. InFix Pro was developed to export text so the user can translate it in a word processor, and then import it back, each block to the right place, in the right format. In case of unavoidable text swell, shrink, or displacement, it has all the DTP tools to adjust it.

It has indeed ended the PDF editing problems. Yet it hasn't ended the idée fixe some translation clients have, when they provide a PDF file, and demand absolutely to have it translated and accurately laid out in a DOC, DOCX, or RTF file. I've heard more than my share from desperate colleagues seeking guidance while trying to do DTP with a word processor. It's like trying to loosen slot headed screws with a large kit of box wrenches.


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Michael Joseph Wdowiak Beijer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:39
Member (2009)
Dutch to English
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added service Oct 23, 2012

Hi José,

Sure, InFix can produce a PDF out of a PDF, but there is also a good reason clients prefer you not to do that. The reason they prefer the final document to be a .doc or .docx is that they then have an editable document. That is, when transforming a PDF into a Word doc during the translation process, the translator is effectively performing an extra service.

Michael


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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 05:39
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Two points here Oct 23, 2012

Michael Beijer wrote:

Hi José,

Sure, InFix can produce a PDF out of a PDF, but there is also a good reason clients prefer you not to do that. The reason they prefer the final document to be a .doc or .docx is that they then have an editable document. That is, when transforming a PDF into a Word doc during the translation process, the translator is effectively performing an extra service.

Michael



Michael,

First, if a dazzling publication was developed with the unique features of a professional DTP app, it's unlikely that one can replicate it in Word. Otherwise there wouldn't be DTP apps in the marketplace, only word processors.

Second, outsourcers seldom are willing to pay extra for all the DTP work it takes. They usually want a PDF file translated and laid out in a DOC file, paying a per-word translation rate, often with fuzzy-match discounts.


Long ago, years before InFix, a friend had a very complex layout PDF to translate and deliver in a DOC file. He used SolidConverter from PDF to DOC, and then struggled with the layout for two days and two nights, didn't sleep, coudn't get it right, and was ready to give up. He asked me for advice, and I told him to check whether the client would accept a PDF. They would. So I got his PDF and the translation in a DOC file. It took me less than three hours to assemble a perfect translated PDF, using PageMaker and Acrobat Distiller. As a side comment, I passed all the texts via Windows Notepad, to de-format it. It's faster to reformat text in PageMaker than to adjust it in Word.


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stake  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 08:39
English to Polish
+ ...
The feature works quite well Oct 23, 2012

I've been using Office 2013 Preview for several weeks now and the feature of opening PDF files as editable Word documents was the first one I put to the test. And to my surprise it works quite astonishing. No other OCR or PDF converting software I have ever tested or used gives such good results as Word 2013. I used a PDF file with headers, footers, combined one-column and two-column layout with tables and graphics inside. Of course, it still required time to do some touch-up and have a "perfect" Word document, but definitely less than with other software. The other thing is that to have such good results you need to have a "proper" PDF file. Unfortunately, these days it is not very uncommon to have poorly made PDFs and if you have one of them there is no software to cope with them decently.

Chris


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 09:39
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Let's hope clients will use it Oct 24, 2012

stake wrote:

I've been using Office 2013 Preview for several weeks now and the feature of opening PDF files as editable Word documents was the first one I put to the test. And to my surprise it works quite astonishing. No other OCR or PDF converting software I have ever tested or used gives such good results as Word 2013. I used a PDF file with headers, footers, combined one-column and two-column layout with tables and graphics inside. Of course, it still required time to do some touch-up and have a "perfect" Word document, but definitely less than with other software. The other thing is that to have such good results you need to have a "proper" PDF file. Unfortunately, these days it is not very uncommon to have poorly made PDFs and if you have one of them there is no software to cope with them decently.

Chris


So in future no client will send us pdf but only Word 2013-files for translation. I heartly welcome such development.


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