Word doc and docx, advantages and disadvantages
Thread poster: Heinrich Pesch

Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 11:20
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Feb 28, 2013

From a translators point of view, what is your opinion about these Word-formats? Is there anything one can do in a docx that is not possible in doc?

At least in SDL Studio there appear a lot more tags in a docx than in a doc of the same document, and the process is technically much smoother with a doc. IMO


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:20
Spanish to English
+ ...
No better Feb 28, 2013

I'll try not to go off on a rant about this, but I've never been happy since docx was foisted upon us. In fact, I usually convert them back into docs before working on them. The same goes for almost every new "improvement" or upgrade that Mr Gates and co seem determined to ram down our throats, like W7 with its Sisyphean ribbon interface.

I suppose there are few improvements in terms of formatting and things like that, but for someone like myself who is only interested in the bare bones of the text, docx and xlsx files are just a nuisance, complicating rather than simplifying things.


 

Rolf Keller
Germany
Local time: 10:20
English to German
The content makes the difference Feb 28, 2013

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

From a translators point of view, what is your opinion about these Word-formats? Is there anything one can do in a docx that is not possible in doc?


Rename a .docx to .zip, then look into that .zip.

Instead of the useless binary stuff found in .doc's, you'll find a clean structure of folders and files which might be useful unter certain circumstances.


 

Tina Vonhof
Canada
Local time: 02:20
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Docx Feb 28, 2013

I work with docx but also receive docs from other people, where I have to click on 'enable editing'. Sometimes things don't show up they way they should, particularly in tables and figures, which then requires a lot of time to fix. I have to work with docx, because that is a requirement of the publisher.

 

John Fossey  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 04:20
Member (2008)
French to English
Changing author names Feb 28, 2013

Rolf Keller wrote:

Rename a .docx to .zip, then look into that .zip.

Instead of the useless binary stuff found in .doc's, you'll find a clean structure of folders and files which might be useful unter certain circumstances.


I used that just the other day, when I did a long revision job on several different computers, which meant that the Track Changes balloons had a variety of author name. Docx. allowed me to go into those inner files and change all the author names to a single one. Very handy for me.


 

trhanslator (X)
DOCX should be preferred for Studio Feb 28, 2013

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

From a translators point of view, what is your opinion about these Word-formats? Is there anything one can do in a docx that is not possible in doc?

At least in SDL Studio there appear a lot more tags in a docx than in a doc of the same document, and the process is technically much smoother with a doc. IMO


Nevertheless DOCX should be preferred for Studio 2011, Paul wrote me in a private mail, when asking why there were invalid XML entities in the Studio XLIFF.


 

Germaine  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 04:20
English to French
+ ...
Would it be only for editing charts Mar 1, 2013

I still use Office 2007. While editing charts in a .doc is painful, you're done with a double click in a .docx file, whether you received the Excel file or not (and especially if you created it). No copy-paste-format back and forth to modify or update the data. Modifying styles is easier and some of the functions under the "references" tab are more efficient. I cross my fingers that it will be the same with the next version I will have to get sooner or later (hopefully later!)... I just don't understand the "no pain, no gain!" motto that seems to be packed with every new version.

Just "in case", I added a line to my email signature: people having issues opening a file are invited to click on the following link to download and install (a 5 minutes thing in Vista) the Office "Compatibility Pack" needed from Microsoft : http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/default.aspx.


 

trhanslator (X)
DOCX allows smaller packages, lesser export problems Mar 1, 2013

DOCX already stores images in a separate folder and allows creation of smaller translation projects (e.g. with Déjà Vu) compared with DOC, that is often converted to RTF first, thus creating a potential export problem (when tags aren't perfectly placed).

 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 10:20
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Every two months Mar 1, 2013

Heinrich Pesch wrote:
From a translators point of view, what is your opinion about these Word-formats? Is there anything one can do in a docx that is not possible in doc?


Once every two to three months I get a DOCX file that MS Word 2003 stuffs up. Also, a DOCX file with lots of images in it will often grow in size every time you save it in Word 2003 (even if you then resave it using Word 2007+).

I have no experience with specifically choosing DOC despite using Word 2007+, though. I just use Word 2003 and get that warning every time. I keep DOCX files as DOCX, although I sometimes resave a DOC file as DOCX if I want to edit it in OmegaT.


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 10:20
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
wordcount Mar 2, 2013

As far as I'm concerned, the best thing about the upgrade is that in Word we now get the wordcount as a matter of course on the bottom bar, instead of having to go into Tools/Statistics or wherever it was before.

Other than that, there are various functions that I have never found that I used to enjoy before, the type of thing you only do every once in a while. I haven't found how to customise the interface, for example. I had the whole toolbar customised before, with all my favourites right there, including the button that put the entire selection in caps, I love that one and hate having to click about ten times to get to, it rather defeats the object of not having to retype the entire selection.

Like Neilmac I hate those ribbons, the drop-down menus were much better. I only have the most recent versions on my work computer (to keep up with clients basically) and have kept XP on my leisure computer, so it's not mere nostalgia.


 

wotswot  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 10:20
Member (2011)
French to English
@ Texte Style Mar 2, 2013

If you're using Word 2010, it's very easy (albeit a bit time-consuming) to customize the QAT (quick access toolbar).
What's more, you can even display it BELOW the ribbon.
And best of all, you can minimize the ribbon (Ctrl-F1 or click the little arrow pointing upwards - like a circumflex accent - next to the question mark top right). This is great because you gain quite a bit of screen space.

Once I realized all this, I never looked back.

I have a QAT that has all the functions I use 90% of the time. You can even insert divider lines between buttons to create logical sections.

If you take the time to customize your QAT, I bet you you'll never look back.
Just go to File, Options, Quick Access Toolbar, Choose commands from (even your macros) then Add them to the right-hand column. For Word commands the buttons retain Word's default keyboard shortcuts. For macros, you can assign your own. And when - back in Word - you hover over the buttons you get the tooltips.
And it's exactly the same process for Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook!

In Options you can also customize the Ribbon if you want to, but like you I hate it and find it a real waste of time and more importantly of space. So I just kill it as explained above (this is a sticky setting).

Also in Customize ribbon, you can export your customizations, very handy when changing computers or installing Office 2010 on another computer.

It's all there if you want it.

I agree Office 2010 is a major paradigm shift, but one that's been adopted by most of the better CAT tools (QAT, minimize ribbon, keyboard customizations, etc.).


 

Antoní­n Otáhal
Local time: 10:20
Member (2005)
English to Czech
+ ...
You can do it in W2010 Mar 2, 2013

Texte Style wrote:

I haven't found how to customise the interface, for example. I had the whole toolbar customised before, with all my favourites right there,


Unlike in W2007, in W2010 you can open your old "normal.dot" (if you still have it), as if it were a normal file, and thus transfer the old macros and customised toolbars (including icons) into the "Add-Ins" of W2010 and use as before. You need to play a while with the Add-Ins settings (I do not remember exactly how I did it, but you should manage after a few trials and errors – in principle, you enable the old normal.dot: under File – Options – Add-Ins, Manage, choose "Tempates", and check the normal.dot field). You may also need to transfer the macros to your Normal.dotm under Developer – Macros – Organizer... while the normal.dot is open.

Also, UBitMenu at http://www.ubit.ch/software/ubitmenu-languages/ is worth looking at - it brings the old-stalyle menus into the nightmare of the 2007/2010 Word environment.

Antonin


 


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