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Thread poster: Julia Gracheva
Julia Gracheva  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 14:10
English to Russian
+ ...
Aug 9, 2016

Dear collegues, i had a break in my work for about 4 years. Now i'd like to start over but i have never worked with CAT-tools, so i would like to get to know one. Although, i know microsoft programms quite well, words as macros and etc are Greek to me(( so i have read forums but dont quite understand terminology, etc. To make the long story short, please, can you advise me some programms and where to start and explain pros and cons with simple language without special terms. Thanks in advance!

[Edited at 2016-08-09 08:27 GMT]


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Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 09:10
English to Croatian
+ ...
English forums? Aug 9, 2016

The posts here must be posted in English, while your exact post as such may be posted in the Russian forums.

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Julia Gracheva  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 14:10
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Corrected Aug 9, 2016

Thanks)

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Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 09:10
English to Croatian
+ ...
Guess you need some training then. Aug 9, 2016

Julia Gracheva wrote:

Dear collegues, i had a break in my work for about 4 years. Now i'd like to start over but i have never worked with CAT-tools, so i would like to get to know one. Although, i know microsoft programms quite well, words as macros and etc are Greek to me(( so i have read forums but dont quite understand terminology, etc. To make the long story short, please, can you advise me some programms and where to start and explain pros and cons with simple language without special terms. Thanks in advance!

[Edited at 2016-08-09 08:27 GMT]


If you know MS Office "quite well" then you can also be self-trained as all these CATs evolved from similar programs and are only more refined with new features. All the programs come with tutorials and there are many available on the net, for free. You may google simplified beginner tutorials, that should get you started. Then practice with some sample files.

Other than that, meanwhile, you can do projects not requiring CAT. Best of luck!


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Kirsten Bodart  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:10
Dutch to English
+ ...
In simple terms Aug 9, 2016

Training isn't really necessary as long as you have a CAT tool that's intuitive for you. Basically all the training videos I've seen up till now are pretty basic, not to mention that you forget the stuff you've learned by the time you actually need it.

So in simple terms:

TM = translation memory, basically a database of segments you have translated before

Segment = imagine an excel spreadsheet with two columns only, as this is how most CAT. Most CAT tools will divide the text you receive up into segments, mostly by sentence (read by period/full stop or colon) and then they store every segment you translate/confirm into a translation memory for later

Termbase = a bilingual database of words you want to remember, your own dictionary so to speak. Your CAT will look for matches in your termbase as you are translating.

Fuzzy match = imagine you get a new text (or you go and translate a new file in the same project) and it contains segments (most often sentences) that only differ in part from the ones you've translated before (stored in your TM) or that only have a few different words. The CAT recognises it and offers you the segment you've translated before so you only need to change the different bits

100% match = a segment in a new file or text that matches one you translated before exactly

101% match/context match = a segment in a new file or text that matches one you translated before exactly AND (with an additional bonus) the segment you translated before that one in the original text also matches exactly

Basically that's everything in a nutshell. You really need to work with them and be inquisitive (how do I do that?/does my CAT do x?) to learn and use all the features and what they can do for you. I'm a self-taught MemoQ user, but there are lots of others about as well. Wordfast has a trial licence that's quite extensive and MemoQ has a 40-day trial licence (full version). Trados probably too, although I can't confirm that.


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Julia Gracheva  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 14:10
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks a lot for your explanation Aug 9, 2016

Shall i buy Termbase additionally, or is it included? Also which tool is better? Trados, Deja vu, MemoQ? Also, if i install cracked version to train is it allright or it has big difference with licensed version?

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Mirko Mainardi  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 09:10
Member
English to Italian
+ ...
I'll give it a try Aug 9, 2016

Julia Gracheva wrote:

... explain pros and cons with simple language without special terms...


Basically, IMO a CAT tool is really useful only if you do technical (or repetitive) translation and/or if your clients request that you use one. Much less so for creative translation, although it can still be useful for consistency and terminology management, I guess.

That said, its main usefulness resides in the fact that you'll be able to quickly reference (and "reuse") previous translations and terminology specific to a certain client/field/subject/product.

Imagine you have an IT client that asks you to translate X words per week about a specific software, with regular updates, etc. You'll create a translation memory and a termbase (as defined by Kirsten before) for this project and use them every week, so that you'll be able to use the same style, wording, terms, etc. each time, without having to look them up each time in the single documents you already translated.

The main disadvantages probably are their cost (license cost + upgrade costs) and the fact that several agencies and some end clients will not only ask you to use a specific CAT tool, but also ask "discounts" on top of that, based on "matches" between the source text and existing translation memories, or even based on how similar the various segments in the source are... (sometimes referred to as "homogeneity" or "internal matches")

Most CAT tools have a trial period, so you could download one and try it out. Probably the most used (or the most requested by agencies) right now are Trados Studio and MemoQ.


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Susan Welsh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:10
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Try OmegaT Aug 9, 2016

Rather than invest in one of the high-priced CAT tools as a beginner, I suggest you start with OmegaT (www.omegat.org OR http://www.omegat.org/ru/omegat.html), which is free and open source, and much easier and more intuitive to use than SDL/Trados or Across. I never use anything else when I have a choice in the matter.
A tutorial for beginners and training videos can be found here: http://www.omegat.org/en/documentation.php

By the way, a "termbase" is not something you buy, but something you create as you go along (otherwise known as a "glossary"). Actually, "Termbase" is the Trados/SDL proprietary format for creating such glossaries. It is not a generic term applying to other CAT tools.

There are many forum posts on the issue of which CAT tools are best for what purposes. Take a look.

Susan


[Edited at 2016-08-09 11:58 GMT]

[Edited at 2016-08-09 12:08 GMT]

[Edited at 2016-08-10 11:17 GMT]


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John Fossey  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 03:10
Member (2008)
French to English
Try Wordfast Classic Aug 9, 2016

I started with Wordfast Classic and would recommend it for anyone starting. The reason is that it works directly within the Word document and you don't have to learn to deal with tags, formatting, etc., since it's all done in Word. You can use translation memories up to 500 segments for free, which is enough to get started. Once you are used to working with Wordfast Classic you can continue with Wordfast Anywhere, which is an online CAT tool and also free, but you have to learn how to handle tags with Wordfast Anywhere.

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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 09:10
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Check with Russian colleagues about how CATs handle the script Aug 10, 2016

There is a free trial version of SDL Trados Studio, which gives you 30 days. Then you can upgrade it to a starter version, which is less expensive than the full version, but does not have all the features.

Some CATs handle scripts and inflections in the language better than others, or they are better for specific languages than others.
I use Trados Studio, and there is a free trial version with all the features, which you can use for 30 days. Then you have to pay, either for a beginners' version with the core features or the full version.

I believe the trial version is good, but it won't run on a computer that already has Studio installed, or if you have used a trial before.

It may not be the best for languages with many cases and inflections.
I believe it handles most alphabets well - I have never had problems because I don't use them. Even the latest version occasionally ignores the differences between the letter A used in most European languages and the Scandinavian Å (Ångström), which is a completely different letter in those languages.

I don't know how it handles other diacritics or a whole alphabet.

Cases and inflections will also vary - identical sentences in English may have to be translated differently in other languages with gender markings, for instance. It is no problem with the languages I work in.
It affects the way the CAT recognises and counts matching sentences and partially matching sentences... And will vary from one language to another.

Obviously, if you work with Russian, you need a CAT that works well with the script and the structure of the language.
MemoQ was started by Hungarians, who (perhaps) know more about that sort of thing than the people behind other CATs.

Good luck, whatever you decide to do!


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Susan Welsh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:10
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Cyrillic is no problem for CATs Aug 10, 2016

There's no problem with Cyrillic in any CAT tool I am familiar with. I translate from Russian to English, and have used OmegaT, SDL 2014, Across, and MemoQ.

As for inflections, that's a question of glossary matches (if you have женщина in your glossary, will the system match it to женщины in your text?). OmegaT's glossary function, which is based on something called tokenizers, generally has no problem as long as you've set up the glossary properly (UTF-8 encoding). SDL does OK. I can't remember about Across and MemoQ.


[Edited at 2016-08-10 11:18 GMT]


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Julia Gracheva  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 14:10
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks a lot for your advices Aug 11, 2016

Thanks a lot for everybody who's replied, i will read about Omega and Wordfast and other programms also, and decide which one is better for me right now!

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Doreen Stacey
United States
? Aug 21, 2016

How is it now? Goodluck

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Angela Rimmer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:10
Member (2014)
German to English
+ ...
MemoQ and Russian inflection/morphology Aug 21, 2016

Susan Welsh wrote:
As for inflections, that's a question of glossary matches (if you have женщина in your glossary, will the system match it to женщины in your text?). OmegaT's glossary function, which is based on something called tokenizers, generally has no problem as long as you've set up the glossary properly (UTF-8 encoding). SDL does OK. I can't remember about Across and MemoQ.


[Edited at 2016-08-10 11:18 GMT]


MemoQ performs well in this respect -- it was developed by Hungarians, and as such is incredibly useful for languages that involve inflections and unusual/non-standard morphology. This is really the only compliment I can give MemoQ; I personally do not like this CAT tool much, but it definitely handles inflections and Russian morphology better than Trados.


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