Free OCR online service - feedback needed
Thread poster: Jan Sundström

Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 18:59
English to Swedish
+ ...
May 7, 2009

Jost Zetsche recommended this web 2.0 service:
http://www.pdftoword.com/

Convenient if you don't have any OCR program installed, perhaps doing a job on a public computer somewhere.

Don't know about Nitro's commitment to integrity, perhaps I'd think twice about uploading sensitive data.

Apparently, the results are comparable to Abbyy PDF Transformer - although I haven't tried it myself yet.

Did anyone else?

/J

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-05-07 20:34 GMT]


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weilliam618
Local time: 00:59
Chinese to English
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Thanks. May 8, 2009

Thanks for sharing. It is really helpful.

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RNAtranslator  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to Spanish
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That breaches confidentiality May 8, 2009

J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:

Don't know about Nitro's commitment to integrity, perhaps I'd think twice about uploading sensitive data.



It is the the client, and not you, who must decide about third parties' confidentiality. Using any service like that would breach any NDA you might have signed. And you don't need any NDA to keep your clients' documents strictly confidential; that is part of translators' code of ethics. You must always get your client's permission to show the document to any third party.

¡Salud!

Ignacio Vicario Esteban


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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Your ISP is a third party, RNA May 9, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
You must always get your client's permission to show the document to any third party.


What the subject line says.


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RNAtranslator  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to Spanish
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Third parties May 9, 2009

Yes, Samuel, but when the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.

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Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 18:59
English to Swedish
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TOPIC STARTER
Delivering = exposing client info May 12, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:

Yes, Samuel, but when the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.


Yeah, but what about delivering your translation back to the client? How many of your clients actually request encrypted file transfers (as opposed to plain old attachments in e-mail)? There you go...

Anyway, the service is good if you didn't sign any NDA, or if you're doing non-client-related translations.


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RNAtranslator  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to Spanish
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Regarding confidentiality, the client rules; the translator doesn't May 14, 2009

J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:

RNAtranslator wrote:

Yes, Samuel, but when the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.


Yeah, but what about delivering your translation back to the client? How many of your clients actually request encrypted file transfers (as opposed to plain old attachments in e-mail)? There you go...


By sending the source unencrypted and not asking the translation encrypted, the client accepts to expose their document to my ISP, to my email provider and to theirs. The client has decided what risks to assume; the client has decided what third parties expose their document to. It is not translator's right to expose the document to any more third parties without client's permission. Remember, it is client's document.

Let's say that a woman has had sex with several men during last month. Would that entitle me to rape her???

J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:

Anyway, the service is good if you didn't sign any NDA, or if you're doing non-client-related translations.


It doesn't matter the NDA. A signed NDA means that it would be easier for them to sue you. But let's be realistic: they won't do it; they know you don't have enough money. Regardless there is or not a NDA, translator's code(s) of ethics state that you must protect client's confidentiality. Just two examples: Proz's Professional guidelines http://www.proz.com/professional-guidelines and ATA's Code of Professional Conduct and Business Practices http://www.atanet.org/membership/code_of_professional_conduct.php These are just examples. Maybe you are nor an ATA member nor have endorsed Proz's guidelines. There is a consensus that confidentiality is part of translators' professional ethics.

Of course, if the document was already freely available on Internet you can show it to anybody, because in that case the client decided to show the document to everybody.

¡Salud!

Ignacio Vicario Esteban


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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Offtopic: I disagree with your logic here May 14, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
When the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.


So you're saying that if a client had exposed some of his confidential stuff to party/person X, then it is okay for the translator to also expose some of the client's confidential stuff to party/person X. In my experience, most NDAs would prohibit this. The fact that the client chooses to expose his stuff to anyone is not implied permission for you to do so as well. You may only expose the client's stuff to anyone that the client had given you permission to do for. Even if you're aware that the client also exposed his work to another party, that it itself should not be construed as permission for you to include that party in the confidential relationship between you and your client.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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Still veering off-topic: what is confidential May 14, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
Of course, if the document was already freely available on Internet you can show it to anybody, because in that case the client decided to show the document to everybody.


Even if the source text is freely available, the translation belongs to the client. The fact that a translation is being done, and the fact that there is a relationship for that text between you and the client, are both confidential pieces of information... even if the source text is freely available.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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Is using an online service a breach of confidentiality? May 14, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:
Don't know about Nitro's commitment to integrity, perhaps I'd think twice about uploading sensitive data.

Using any service like that would breach any NDA you might have signed.


Well, it is difficult to know, is it? Have any of the professional translators' associations made by decisions or pronouncements about this? My comment about the ISP was slightly tongue-in-cheek, and I believe it is slightly irrelevant to the issue because it relates to the use of a courier, and couriers are generally considered trusted parties whose possession of the information is often not regarded as a breach of confidentiality.

But online services are getting more common, and perhaps the issue of whether using an online service (that is automated, and/or secured) falls within the goodfaith allowances made by a confidentiality agreement. I'm talking here about a situation where the client had not expressly excluded the use of online services.


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RNAtranslator  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to Spanish
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Samuel, I beg you, read again my post May 14, 2009

Samuel Murray wrote:

RNAtranslator wrote:
When the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.


So you're saying that if a client had exposed some of his confidential stuff to party/person X, then it is okay for the translator to also expose some of the client's confidential stuff to party/person X.


Please, read again what you quoted. I'll quote again that text, but I'll edit it to write the word "not" in uppercase and boldface:

RNAtranslator wrote:
When the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is NOT translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.


I suppose I don't need to explain any more.


Samuel Murray wrote:

The fact that the client chooses to expose his stuff to anyone is not implied permission for you to do so as well. You may only expose the client's stuff to anyone that the client had given you permission to do for. Even if you're aware that the client also exposed his work to another party, that it itself should not be construed as permission for you to include that party in the confidential relationship between you and your client.


That is exactly, exactly, EXACTLY, my point of view.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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I don't think I misquoted, but I do agree with you May 14, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
Samuel Murray wrote:
RNAtranslator wrote:
When the client sends the work, if they do it unencrypted, they are the ones who expose it to that third party, translator's ISP; it is their right to do so. But it is not translator's right to expose it to any more third parties without client's permission.

So you're saying that if a client had exposed some of his confidential stuff to party/person X, then it is okay for the translator to also expose some of the client's confidential stuff to party/person X.

Please, read again what you quoted. I'll quote again that text, but I'll edit it to write the word "not" in uppercase and boldface...


I did see the "not". My response was trigged by the "any more". But I see that you do agree with my response lower down in my post, so we all agree here.


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RNAtranslator  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:59
English to Spanish
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An obvious thing, IMHO May 14, 2009

Samuel Murray wrote:

RNAtranslator wrote:
J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:
Don't know about Nitro's commitment to integrity, perhaps I'd think twice about uploading sensitive data.

Using any service like that would breach any NDA you might have signed.


Well, it is difficult to know, is it? Have any of the professional translators' associations made by decisions or pronouncements about this?


Difficult? You send your client's document to other people's server without permission. Why should translators' associations decide anything about something so obvious?

Samuel Murray wrote:

My comment about the ISP was slightly tongue-in-cheek, and I believe it is slightly irrelevant to the issue because it relates to the use of a courier, and couriers are generally considered trusted parties whose possession of the information is often not regarded as a breach of confidentiality.



I don't agree with this. IMO, it is irrelevant whether couriers are trustworthy or not. The point is that the client decided to trust your email provider and ISP; otherwise, they would not have sent it or would have done it encrypted.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:59
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
What they should decide upon May 14, 2009

RNAtranslator wrote:
Samuel Murray wrote:
Well, it is difficult to know, is it? Have any of the professional translators' associations made by decisions or pronouncements about this?

Difficult? Why should translators' associations decide anything about something so obvious?


Well, my point of departure is that translators who belong to translators' associations are usually subject to the associations' codes of ethics and its agreed-to interpretation, and most such codes contain clauses about confidentiality.

My question relates to scenarios in which the client's NDA does not specifically exclude the use of online services -- the question is what the normal default action would be in such a case. If a client has no NDA or if his NDA is very vague, then the translator is still obligated to maintain a certain minimum level of confidentiality, don't you agree?

So if the NDA is not all-limiting and does not exclude the use of online services, and the translator is still obligated to maintain a certain minimum level of confidentiality, then the question is whether using online services would normally be included or exluded from this assumed minimum level of confidentiality.

I'll give you an example of how my minimum level of confidentiality (in cases where no contrary agreement with the client exists) may be more than a client would normally allow: by default, I would be happy to give my translation to a reviewer to proofread or edit, if I'm satisfied that the reviewer will maintain the confidentiality of the documents.

The point is that the client decided to trust your email provider and ISP; otherwise, they would not have sent it or would have done it encrypted.


Then we should agree to disagree on this particular point. I feel quite strongly about my position, but so do you, it seems


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Rod Walters  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 01:59
Japanese to English
Useful in some cases, not in others May 15, 2009

I've tried it a few times with Japanese PDFs.

It works very well if the text has been entered as text. The formatting is managed elegantly, and you can translate it in Trados with little difficulty.

However, if you upload a PDF that has text in images, it just sends you back a word file with the images pasted in it, which is not what you want. In this case, you have to fire up Iris or whatever you might have, and see what sort of results you get with that.

So in that sense, it's not really OCR - it's PDF conversion. You still need an OCR capability.


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