Getting started and unsure of software options
Thread poster: amy isambard
amy isambard

Local time: 12:12
German to English
Feb 23, 2011

Hi. I'm looking to start translation of legal documents (tax). At the moment, I have to do this in Word in my current job and would like to try and do this freelance.

When I did some research, I learned about CAT and tried to download one such software called OmegaT:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OmegaT

But this didn't seem to work well as with tax text there is lots of full stops which the software was breaking up as sentences. I was wondering if people could recommend software which can handle things like the sample text below and even better if there is such free software.

I'm hoping to get maybe one job a month to start with and would like to see if I can make money from this before spending money on software. But if there is a better way than Word and it is free, then I would like to try this.

Thanks for any help and advice.

Amy

Example Text:

"Die steuerpflichtige Person hat die Steuerabrechnungen mit ihrem Jahresabschluss abzugleichen und festgestellte Mängel zu korrigieren (vgl. auch Ziff. 6 der MWST-Info 15 Abrechnung und Steuerentrichtung).

Erstellt eine nicht steuerpflichtige Person ein solches Bauwerk, kann sie sich als Steuerpflichtige eintragen lassen (Art. 10 Abs. 1 MWSTG i.V.m. Art. 11 MWSTG). In der Folge gilt das oben zum Vorsteuerabzug Gesagte für sie gleichermassen.

Diese einfache Gesellschaft ist jedoch von der Steuerpflicht befreit, solange die Umsätze aus steuerbaren Leistungen jährlich gesamthaft weniger als 100'000 Franken betragen (Art. 10 Abs. 2 Bst. a MWSTG)."


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Rossana Triaca  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 07:12
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
Exceptions... Feb 23, 2011

Amy,

Most CAT tools allow you to set up a list of "exceptions" to ignore full stops after certain specific terms. In your case, it would be simple to make a list of abbreviations to avoid segmentation, for example:

vgl.
Ziff.
Art.
Abs.
i.V.m.
Bst.

Plus, such repetitive text seems to be a great candidate for the full CAT treatment! In any event, you should be able to "join" segments with a simple click. I'd recommend researching a bit more about the specific CAT tool you're trying (particularly tutorials, demos and videos). All CAT tools need to be "tuned" to your specific needs, but it's usually something you only do once or twice if you deal with the same types or text over and over again.


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Alex Lago  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 12:12
Member (2009)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Look at this website Feb 23, 2011

I recommend you take a look at this website set up by Jost Zetzsche where you can see videos of most (if not all, I'm not really sure) of the CAT tools currently in circulation. They are very interesting videos as they go through the process of doing a translation with each one of them so you can see how each program works.

http://www.translatorstraining.com/sito/index.php

Having said this a lot will depend on whether you will be working mostly for direct clients or agencies, if you work mostly for direct clients you can choose the CAT tool you prefer, but quite often when you work with agencies they have a preferred CAT tool they want you to work with, in which case if you have say three big agency clients who give you a lot of work and therefore it's worth your time and money to buy and learn how to use different CAT tools you might in fact end up with more than one CAT tool if each of these hypothetical companies each use a different one in this example you could well end up with 3 different CAT tools.

Like I say it's a question of time and money, all of these tools take a while to master and most of them are expensive (some more than others) though there are some free ones.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 12:12
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Abbreviations in OmegaT Feb 23, 2011

Rossana Triaca wrote:
Most CAT tools allow you to set up a list of "exceptions" to ignore full stops after certain specific terms.


Yes, in OmegaT you can set up segmentation exceptions.

In any event, you should be able to "join" segments with a simple click.


I agree, one "should" be able to do that, but in OmegaT the process of adding exceptions isn't that simple (yet). One has to add one exception at a time, and one has to do it with a little knowledge of regular expressions (but this is explained in the User Manual). It takes a bit of practice, so start by adding just one exception to see if you can successfully add it.


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 13:12
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Try Wordfast Classic Feb 23, 2011

In this software you can adjust segmentation on the fly (forced segmentation). Wordfast is the the most versatile tool for use in MS Word. Many times the source text is formatted in an amateurish fashion, but not problem in WFC.

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Ambrose Li  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 06:12
Chinese to English
+ ...
Regular expressions! Feb 23, 2011

Samuel Murray wrote:
I agree, one "should" be able to do that, but in OmegaT the process of adding exceptions isn't that simple (yet). One has to add one exception at a time, and one has to do it with a little knowledge of regular expressions (but this is explained in the User Manual). It takes a bit of practice, so start by adding just one exception to see if you can successfully add it.


Oh sweet… regular expressions! That’s great news. I should get back to trying out OmegaT then.

If exceptions are regular expressions in OmegaT, then it means that you shouldn’t have to do them one at a time. You should be able to enter a single regexp matching multiple abbreviations; you just need to be careful.

[Edited at 2011-02-23 17:11 GMT]


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 12:12
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
@Ambrose Feb 23, 2011

Ambrose Li wrote:
Samuel Murray wrote:
In OmegaT ... one has to add one exception at a time, and one has to do it with a little knowledge of regular expressions...

Oh sweet… regular expressions! That’s great news. I should get back to trying out OmegaT then. ... If exceptions are regular expressions in OmegaT, then it means that you shouldn’t have to do them one at a time.


If you're just a simple user, you can make one rule for each abbreviation instead of trying to make one rule that covers a whole range of abbreviations, but if you're an expert at regular expressions, you can make a single rule that covers a whole range of situations.

However, the nice thing about multiple rules is that they are evaluated one after the other (cascaded), which you can't always do within a single regular expression. It is also easier to add, remove or change the priority of rules if they are simple.


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amy isambard

Local time: 12:12
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Feb 28, 2011

Thanks for all the tips and suggestions. I will take a closer look at the links and videos suggested and try again. I must admit, I was so confused by OmegaT that I almost gave up immediately and ran back to Word!

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