Characters limit for target translation in MS EXCEL
Thread poster: Armen Ayvazyan

Armen Ayvazyan
English to French
+ ...
Jan 23, 2007

I was given to translate a very large Excel file, and it is the request of my client to keep the translation of each entry below 20 characters. Can anyone suggest a technique, a method or software function to comply with this request without having to copy/paste each entry to MS WORD and "wordcount" it.

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Ken Cox  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:14
German to English
+ ...
suggestions Jan 23, 2007

You'll probably receive other suggestions (a similar question was asked some time ago, but I don't know where to find the thread). However, it's not necessary to copy and paste individual cells of Excel worksheets into a Word document. You can simply select and copy entire sets of cells, columns, groups of columns, or entire worksheets and paste them into a blank Word document, where they will appear as a Word table. When you're done, you can select the (content of the) table and paste it back into the corresponding area of an Excel worksheet.
One caveat is that this does not work well if the Excel file is formatted with a complicated layout (merged cells in some locations), in which case you will have to copy the various sections individually, but it works perfectly with simple, uniform row/column layouts.

An improvised way to set a 20-character limit is to change the text font to a non-proportional font (e.g. Courier) and set the table column width or the paragraph margins just wide enough for 20 characters. Anything more than this will overflow onto a new line.


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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:14
Italian to English
Data validation Jan 23, 2007

Armen Ayvazyan wrote:

I was given to translate a very large Excel file, and it is the request of my client to keep the translation of each entry below 20 characters. Can anyone suggest a technique, a method or software function to comply with this request without having to copy/paste each entry to MS WORD and "wordcount" it.


Hi Armen,

You could try the data validation function of Excel and tell the spreadsheet not to accept entries with more than 20 characters:

http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel/HA010346571033.aspx

HTH

Giles


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Ken Cox  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:14
German to English
+ ...
@ Giles Jan 23, 2007

Clever. Of course, you need Excel 2002 or later, and I wonder how efficient it would be in practice (you don't know that you're approaching the limit until you've passed it, and then you have to respond to the error message etc.).

[Edited at 2007-01-23 11:04]


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Jalapeno
Local time: 07:14
English to German
... Jan 23, 2007

Ken Cox wrote:

An improvised way to set a 20-character limit is to change the text font to a non-proportional font (e.g. Courier) and set the table column width or the paragraph margins just wide enough for 20 characters. Anything more than this will overflow onto a new line.



I use this method quite frequently.

You can also create a new column next to the column with the character restriction and use the formula Length=(A1) to give you the number of characters in cell A1.


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Mulyadi Subali  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 13:14
English to Indonesian
+ ...
useful! Jan 23, 2007

Giles Watson wrote:

Armen Ayvazyan wrote:

I was given to translate a very large Excel file, and it is the request of my client to keep the translation of each entry below 20 characters. Can anyone suggest a technique, a method or software function to comply with this request without having to copy/paste each entry to MS WORD and "wordcount" it.


Hi Armen,

You could try the data validation function of Excel and tell the spreadsheet not to accept entries with more than 20 characters:

http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel/HA010346571033.aspx

HTH

Giles


thanks giles. there should be point to be given for useful tips such as this.


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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:14
Italian to English
It's probably quicker... Jan 23, 2007

Ken Cox wrote:

Clever. Of course, you need Excel 2002 or later, and I wonder how efficient it would be in practice (you don't know that you're approaching the limit until you've passed it, and then you have to respond to the error message etc.).

[Edited at 2007-01-23 11:04]


Hi Ken,

I would imagine that the data validation route is quicker than cutting and pasting into Word.

Since Armen only has 20 characters to play with, he might find the error message helps him to fiddle his 22-character (say) translation down to 19 or 20 fairly swiftly. And I forgot to point out that he can of course select the spreadsheet cells that he wants to limit to 20 characters.

Cheers,

Giles

[Edited at 2007-01-23 12:14]


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Armen Ayvazyan
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
THANK YOU ! Jan 23, 2007

I found all your suggestions very useful. I am now using LEN function to handle the problem. THANK YOU ALL!

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Characters limit for target translation in MS EXCEL

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