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Compatibility SDL Trados Studio 2009 with other CAT tools
Thread poster: Interlingo BV

Interlingo BV
Netherlands
Local time: 13:27
Member (2018)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Aug 17, 2011

Dear colleagues,

The translation company that I work for purchased SDL Trados Studio 2009 recently. It works perfectly for (in-house) translations, but the program turns out to be quite a challenge when it comes to compatibility with other CAT tools such as Wordfast and Transit. Could you tell me how we can still work with freelance translators who use other tools, while at the same time being able to update our Studio TMs?

Last week, we sent a translator who works with
... See more
Dear colleagues,

The translation company that I work for purchased SDL Trados Studio 2009 recently. It works perfectly for (in-house) translations, but the program turns out to be quite a challenge when it comes to compatibility with other CAT tools such as Wordfast and Transit. Could you tell me how we can still work with freelance translators who use other tools, while at the same time being able to update our Studio TMs?

Last week, we sent a translator who works with Wordfast an export of the Studio TM (in tmx format), asked her to make the translation in Worfast and send us a 'clean' text with an export of the translation's TM (or an update of the TM that we sent her). Unfortunately, she was unable to export the TM in a way that included the translation as well. Somehow, something went wrong, as we received a tmx file that did not include the new text. As we do not have any knowledge of Wordfast, we were unable to give her any advice and are now once again asking her for bilingual files that we can clean up using Workbench 2007, which can then be exported and imported into Studio. Since this is much more work, I would really love to find a quicker way. Can anyone tell me what the translator should have done (and needs to do in the future) in Wordfast to generate a tmx file that does include the translation?

Any tips with regard to Transit and other tools are also very welcome, as we are in the process of getting to know Studio 2009 and SDL is not very forthcoming with help and information about other tools and their compatibility.

Kind regards,

Astrid Amels
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Selcuk Akyuz  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 14:27
Member (2006)
English to Turkish
+ ...
xliff support Aug 17, 2011

Wordfast users can only copy source segments to target and then translate the target segments. Therefore they cannot translate pretranslated sdlxliff files.

AFAIR, Trados 2007 cannot be used for SDLXLIFF files as well.


Déjà Vu X, Déjà Vu X2 and memoQ supports xliff and these tools can be used for translation of SDLXLIFF files.



[Edited at 2011-08-17 17:01 GMT]


 

Michael Beijer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:27
Member (2009)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Get memoQ instead? Aug 17, 2011

Hello Astrid,

Wordfast / your translator: It's hard to say exactly what your translator did wrong. Exporting a TMX from a job should be quite simple, in any tool. What exactly did they send you? What version of Wordfast are they using?

SDL Studio: I can't say I have much experience with Studio, although I do know that Studio 2011 will finally be able to handle "unleaned" files directly, so you shouldn't have to go through the Workbench
... See more
Hello Astrid,

Wordfast / your translator: It's hard to say exactly what your translator did wrong. Exporting a TMX from a job should be quite simple, in any tool. What exactly did they send you? What version of Wordfast are they using?

SDL Studio: I can't say I have much experience with Studio, although I do know that Studio 2011 will finally be able to handle "unleaned" files directly, so you shouldn't have to go through the Workbench 2007 workaround any more.

Compatibility: I suspect memoQ would have been a better purchase if you are looking for compatibility with other CAT tools. It has a lively and active community of users, and the Kilgray team generally answer any questions you might have within the hour. Even if you don't have a paid support contract;)

Michael

[Edited at 2011-08-17 17:00 GMT]
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Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:27
French to Polish
+ ...
Varia... Aug 17, 2011

Interlingo Translation Services B.V. wrote:

The translation company that I work for purchased SDL Trados Studio 2009 recently. It works perfectly for (in-house) translations, but the program turns out to be quite a challenge when it comes to compatibility with other CAT tools such as Wordfast and Transit.

No idea about Transit but Wordfast (Pro) is generally a bad idea if one is a CAT hopper.
I suggest rather DVX, memoQ or Swordfish (alphabetically, the list is not exhaustive, one can't test all the tools in the universe).

As I reject Wordfast Pro as a sound CAT tool, I'll not give you sound workarounds, you should rather check some Wordfast forum.
IMO the best solution is to follow the "legacy" Trados TTX workflow.
This wokflow is well tested in several tools and should not cause problems.

Could you tell me how we can still work with freelance translators who use other tools, while at the same time being able to update our Studio TMs?

You send 'em the SDLXLIFF files, they return 'em, and:
- you copy 'em in the right location, open 'em in Studio, validate (set all the segment as Translated, then finalize.
- you send the returned SDLXLIFF files to your TM (you should include also the Draft status), then pretranslate in Studio.

Last week, we sent a translator who works with Wordfast an export of the Studio TM (in tmx format), asked her to make the translation in Worfast and send us a 'clean' text with an export of the translation's TM (or an update of the TM that we sent her).

You should be aware than the TMX compatibility is just like a unicorn.
If you import Wordfast TMX in Studio, you'll loose all the formatting info.
Sad but true.

Unfortunately, she was unable to export the TM in a way that included the translation as well.

She should do.
Using Wordfast Classic (which is a great tool for Word files, far above the Trados classic).
Wordfast Pro can't export TMX files.

Somehow, something went wrong, as we received a tmx file that did not include the new text.

It's quite strange.
It seems it's some translator's error.

As we do not have any knowledge of Wordfast, we were unable to give her any advice and are now once again asking her for bilingual files that we can clean up using Workbench 2007,

IMO it's the best workflow in your case if Wordfast is used.

which can then be exported and imported into Studio. Since this is much more work, I would really love to find a quicker way. Can anyone tell me what the translator should have done (and needs to do in the future) in Wordfast to generate a tmx file that does include the translation?

IMO it's a basic Wordfast feature (Commit to TM, Alt+End).
It should work.

Any tips with regard to Transit and other tools are also very welcome, as we are in the process of getting to know Studio 2009 and SDL is not very forthcoming with help and information about other tools and their compatibility.

Hear, hear
If they say how to work as in Trados without Trados, they simply loose the market.
You should rather ask question on the concurrence forums/groups.
Nonetheless, some tools are pretty compatible

PS
I own Studio Pro only for compatibility and test purposes.
In the real life, I never translate in Studio.
If one uses heavily terminology, it's a big mistake.

Cheers
GG

[Edited at 2011-08-17 21:18 GMT]


 

Hiroko Miyazaki  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 20:27
Member (2010)
English to Japanese
There is no problem in compatibility between Studio 2009 and Wordfast but only plain text Aug 17, 2011

Hello!

I use many translation tools and basically use Trados 2009 (SP3) as a center memory location (of course Wordfast TMX memories can be easily imported). My Wordfast vs is 2.4.2.

Studio 2009 memories can be exported in TMX, which can be used in Wordfast as they are(TMX). Translators can just use the TMX as a usual Wordfast memory (readable and writable). After translation is done in Wordfast, the TMX can be imported without any problem in Studio 2009. But later,
... See more
Hello!

I use many translation tools and basically use Trados 2009 (SP3) as a center memory location (of course Wordfast TMX memories can be easily imported). My Wordfast vs is 2.4.2.

Studio 2009 memories can be exported in TMX, which can be used in Wordfast as they are(TMX). Translators can just use the TMX as a usual Wordfast memory (readable and writable). After translation is done in Wordfast, the TMX can be imported without any problem in Studio 2009. But later, I found out by another poster that only plain texts are imported/exported.

I think that the translator happened to push the buttun "Read Only" by accident, when starting to use and set the TMX memory. So, no new sentence was saved in the TMX.

I hope it helps. For myself, Studio 2009 is most wondeful for JA translation, although other tools are not well made for JA translation.

Hiroko

[Edited at 2011-08-17 18:26 GMT]

[Edited at 2011-08-18 11:19 GMT]
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Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:27
French to Polish
+ ...
Tools whch handle XLIFF in an aberrant way... Aug 17, 2011

Selcuk Akyuz wrote:

Wordfast users can only copy source segments to target and then translate the target segments. Therefore they cannot translate pretranslated sdlxliff files.

AFAIR, Trados 2007 cannot be used for SDLXLIFF files as well.

Theoretically it's possible (after some tweaks) but it makes no sense.
The XLIFF support in Trados 2007 is probably even worse than in Wordfast Pro which is fundamentally bad for this purpose.

Cheers
GG


 

MikeTrans
Germany
Local time: 13:27
Italian to German
+ ...
TMX will give you only plain text... Aug 18, 2011

... that's the basic compatibility rule with TMX.

So, if someone sends you a TMX, what you get is the plain text and chances are that Studio will segment such text in a different way, so not even that is 100% compatible.
I know for sure that his is true for DVX and MemoQ as they use simple trailing numbers to mark any formating. For Trados Studio, these trailings just don't exist... They take unnecessary room in the TM.
And there is a prime reason for that: if it would
... See more
... that's the basic compatibility rule with TMX.

So, if someone sends you a TMX, what you get is the plain text and chances are that Studio will segment such text in a different way, so not even that is 100% compatible.
I know for sure that his is true for DVX and MemoQ as they use simple trailing numbers to mark any formating. For Trados Studio, these trailings just don't exist... They take unnecessary room in the TM.
And there is a prime reason for that: if it would be otherwise, then you could simply bypass Trados Studio (work without it, but pretend you have it). The same is true for any other CAT tool: the producers are interested to keep you with *their* tool and do everything to *complicate* compatibility.

Trados 2007 and SDLX Translation Memories based on the TTX workflow will be about 95% compatible with Studio TMs if exported to TMX, anything else is: NO GO (apart plain text).

The only way to assure the best possible compatibility is as said above:

TTX file exchanges; SDLXLIFF file exchanges
The first is much better, as every CAT should have that in his repertoire.

Greets,
Mike


[Edited at 2011-08-18 00:46 GMT]
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Hazel Underwood  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:27
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Wordfast works with TTX Aug 18, 2011

As far as I am aware Wordfast can handle TTX files, so if you create the TTX in Trados 2007 first your translator should be translate it and send back a TTX file that you can then open in Studio.

Transit doesn't seem to be compatible with anything so far that I have found.

Memoq is definitely the best for compatibility with Studio.


 

Michael Beijer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:27
Member (2009)
Dutch to English
+ ...
in summary (perhaps?) Aug 18, 2011

It would seem that your best option is to send your translators:

  • a pre-translated TTX file, +
  • the original file for reference,

    and ask them to translate it and return it to you.

    p.s. Have a look at this discussion, which seems relevant here: http://www.proz.com/forum/cat_tools_technic... See more
  • It would seem that your best option is to send your translators:

  • a pre-translated TTX file, +
  • the original file for reference,

    and ask them to translate it and return it to you.

    p.s. Have a look at this discussion, which seems relevant here: http://www.proz.com/forum/cat_tools_technical_help/118865-pre_segment_translate_your_definition.html

    Michael



    [Edited at 2011-08-18 07:57 GMT] ▲ Collapse


  •  

    Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
    Local time: 13:27
    French to Polish
    + ...
    Segmentation... TM and document exchange... Aug 18, 2011

    MikeTrans wrote:

    ... that's the basic compatibility rule with TMX.

    So, if someone sends you a TMX, what you get is the plain text and chances are that Studio will segment such text in a different way, so not even that is 100% compatible.

    This is a very pertinent remark.
    In many CAT tools, the segmentation rules may be different (in fact, they are...).
    Even different Trados versions use different rules and, e.g., if you save the same document in a different format (e.g. XLS as XLSX), the segmentation and the tagging may be different (it's true for Trados 2007, Studio always converts Excel files to XLSX, starting from SP2 AFAIR).

    I know for sure that his is true for DVX and MemoQ as they use simple trailing numbers to mark any formating.

    This is not true at all for memoQ.
    It's only one of their alternative tagging methods and, in fact, these numbers are not present in the TM, they're replaced by void placeholders.

    We should make a distinction between the actual TMX content and its interpretation.
    The fact the memoQ tags are represented by numbers in Trados TMs is just a way Trados imports 'em.

    For Trados Studio, these trailings just don't exist... They take unnecessary room in the TM.

    The principle is simple.
    If a tool (not only Trados) spots tags it can't recognize, they're stripped or simplified during the import (i.e. the unrecognized tag content is stripped if the same tag type exist in both tools e.g. the common ones like bpt, ept, ph).
    So it's not entirely true to say they take unnecessary room in the TM.
    The simplified tags (e.g resulting from mQ/DVX) may be partially reused by Trados which is able to substitute some TM tags by source segment tags.
    If you think this room is really unnecessary, you have the option "Import translation units as plain text" in the Studio TM import wizard.

    Trados 2007 and SDLX Translation Memories based on the TTX workflow will be about 95% compatible with Studio TMs if exported to TMX, anything else is: NO GO (apart plain text).

    Yep.
    A sound and 100% compatible CAT hopping may be based only on the document (bilingual file) exchange and not on the TM (TMX) exchange.

    The only way to assure the best possible compatibility is as said above:
    TTX file exchanges; SDLXLIFF file exchanges
    The first is much better, as every CAT should have that in his repertoire.

    Indeed.

    BTW.
    Swordfish is able to read SDLXLIFF files and export 'em as TTX (in fact, it's not a "true" TTX, it's just a TTX-like format which permits the data exchange with Trados users), so one can imagine some Studio-Swordfish-Wordfast or whatever-Swordfish-Studio workflow.
    IMO this kind of workflow may make sense occasionally but I consider it's too many steps in a normal work unless you have some automation routine.

    Cheers
    GG

    [Edited at 2011-08-18 08:31 GMT]


     

    Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
    Local time: 13:27
    French to Polish
    + ...
    TMX export from Wordfast Pro... rectification... Aug 18, 2011

    Grzegorz Gryc wrote:

    Interlingo Translation Services B.V. wrote:

    Unfortunately, she was unable to export the TM in a way that included the translation as well.

    She should do.
    Using Wordfast Classic (which is a great tool for Word files, far above the Trados classic).
    Wordfast Pro can't export TMX files.


    Sorry, I was wrong.
    The current Wordast Pro version exports TMX.

    Cheers
    GG


    [Edited at 2011-08-18 08:26 GMT]


     

    SDL Community  Identity Verified
    United Kingdom
    Local time: 13:27
    Member (1970)
    English
    An interesting discussion Aug 18, 2011

    I would only like to make one comment, as I tend to agree with most of the content here, and that relates to this:

    Interlingo Translation Services B.V. wrote:

    Any tips with regard to Transit and other tools are also very welcome, as we are in the process of getting to know Studio 2009 and SDL is not very forthcoming with help and information about other tools and their compatibility.

    Kind regards,

    Astrid Amels


    I guess it depends who you ask?

    But another option for a Translation House who may have access to development expertise is to use the SDL OpenExchange and develop a filetype for Studio. This way you can send the source files to your translators who use other tools and then be able to use the finished work in Studio (assuming this is the tool you use predominantly). Clearly all the comments on segmentation differences will apply, and probably always will apply even if all tools did create and use XLIFF or TTX or some other bilingual flavour. I guess online working will remove some of this... but that's another story


    [Edited at 2011-08-18 10:38 GMT]


     

    Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
    Local time: 13:27
    French to Polish
    + ...
    SDL unwillingness to provide interoperability... segmentation... Aug 18, 2011

    SDL Support wrote:

    But another option for a Translation House who may have access to development expertise is to use the SDL OpenExchange and develop a filetype for Studio. This way you can send the source files to your translators who use other tools and then be able to use the finished work in Studio (assuming this is the tool you use predominantly).

    It's just a tedious workaround.
    The main problem is the general SDL unwillingness to assure the interoperability with any kind of external tool.

    This kind of functionalities exist out of the box in more "human" tools where one is able to generate in few clicks standard packages which can be read by all sound tools in the market.
    E.g. in DVX (Wrkgrp) or memoQ case, you have:
    - XLIFF,
    - bilingual RTF table,
    - Trados bilingual RTF (well, Studio 2009 is not sound here as it doesn't handle this common Trados format).

    Clearly all the comments on segmentation differences will apply, and probably always will apply even if all tools did create and use XLIFF or TTX or some other bilingual flavour.

    Obviously.

    But if you have a SDLXLIFF file (generated with Studio) which is processed in a sound tool (DVX, memoQ, Swordfish etc.), you'll get exactly the same segmentation as in the initial file.
    Even if you split and join segments as you like (e.g. in order to bypass the Trados limitation related to the paragraph mark), the final segmentation wil be preserved.
    memoQ is the best here.

    I guess online working will remove some of this... but that's another story

    Yep.
    But it's a lot of translators who refuse all kind of online jobs, especially those to be done in some nazi tool.
    No special SDL related pun intended, simply, a lot of these tools are nazi, slow and stupid.

    Cheers
    GG


     

    SDL Community  Identity Verified
    United Kingdom
    Local time: 13:27
    Member (1970)
    English
    I don't think so Aug 18, 2011

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of all the usual suspects in these forums I don't agree with you at all Grzegorz.

    I always find it funny how on one hand you are so critical of SDL, and yet on the other hand you suggest that other tools are better because they are able to save the work in SDL formats (XLIFF excluded of course).

    Certainly I don't see how the OpenExchange is a tedious workaround. At the moment you are only talking about a few formats, but with the Open
    ... See more
    At the risk of incurring the wrath of all the usual suspects in these forums I don't agree with you at all Grzegorz.

    I always find it funny how on one hand you are so critical of SDL, and yet on the other hand you suggest that other tools are better because they are able to save the work in SDL formats (XLIFF excluded of course).

    Certainly I don't see how the OpenExchange is a tedious workaround. At the moment you are only talking about a few formats, but with the OpenExchange we have made it very easy for a developer to create their own filetypes for any format at all. Once the filetype has been developed where is the workaround?

    I think the largest volumes of translation work are done without any CAT hopping at all. There simply is no time for messing around and having to deal with the additional work that is incurred when files come back into the originating tools. There is clearly a market for this but I just think it is not the majority. So by making available the possibility for anyone to add these to their own armory, or develop and sell them if they want, we are providing all the interoperability we need.

    So I don't think there is unwillingness; we just have a focus elsewhere and add things as we feel they are needed. Bilingual doc is a prime example... should have done it earlier for Studio I agree but I think the reason it lingers on is because there are still a lot of people who prefer to work in Word (and we still support the Word toolbar in Word 2010, so we're hardly killing it off ourselves) and not Studio/memoQ/DVX or whatever. I think the Studio platform is unique for a commercial tool because we allow and encourage development. What you see in the external OpenExchange website is a fraction of what is actually being developed by LSPs and Corporates who have taken advantage of this already to give themselves a competitive edge based on the sort of work they do.

    On the online tools... time will tell. You probably won't have had the opportunity to use the Studio Online application that is currently only part of SDLTMS, but this is very good, and if you hide the browser toolbars it looks and feels a lot like working in Studio, even with all the shortcuts etc. You can see it here if you're interested:

    http://tinyurl.com/studioonline

    Regards

    Paul
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    Grzegorz Gryc  Identity Verified
    Local time: 13:27
    French to Polish
    + ...
    Neither me :) Aug 18, 2011

    SDL Support wrote:

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of all the usual suspects in these forums I don't agree with you at all Grzegorz.

    I always find it funny how on one hand you are so critical of SDL, and yet on the other hand you suggest that other tools are better because they are able to save the work in SDL formats (XLIFF excluded of course).

    I don't see any contradiction here.
    Simply, Trados is unable to deal directly with DVX, memoQ, Transit files etc., so it's worse in terms of flexibility.

    As you state below, Trados is even unable to deal with its own formats, so it's flexibility is somewhere in the subzero zone

    BTW.
    If I'm so critical, it's not because I hate SDL by default.
    Simply, during the last 10 years you (SDL) didn't manage to provide bulletproof terminology management system working smoothly with the editing environment.
    If an arrogant support guy says "if you have no tabs in your Multiterm CSV export file, add 'em", it's the quintessence of the way Trados/SDL respects its customers.
    If, in 2008, a support guy states (lies?) a correct CSV export filter will be available "soon" and no change is made during 3 years, I simply don't believe any SDL word.
    Ich bin ein Wutbürger

    Certainly I don't see how the OpenExchange is a tedious workaround. At the moment you are only talking about a few formats, but with the OpenExchange we have made it very easy for a developer (...)

    Yep, for a developper.
    Most translators are not developers and need a simple solution out of the box.

    So I don't think there is unwillingness; we just have a focus elsewhere and add things as we feel they are needed. Bilingual doc is a prime example... should have done it earlier for Studio I agree

    Should have.

    but I think the reason it lingers on is because there are still a lot of people who prefer to work in Word (and we still support the Word toolbar in Word 2010, so we're hardly killing it off ourselves) (...)

    You (SDL) simply expected all the people will rush on the brand new Studio as usually.
    You neglected your customers needs.
    As the customers didn't react in the way SDL expected and voted with feet, you present the reintroduction of this "obsolete" format as a progress and a proof how much you take care about the customers

    BTW.
    I never liked to translate in Word, neither in TagEditor.
    And, for me, Studio is the first Trados called environment I find acceptable... when it works...

    I think the Studio platform is unique for a commercial tool because we allow and encourage development. What you see in the external OpenExchange website is a fraction of what is actually being developed by (...)

    First I'll see, then I'll believe.
    2 years, 25 tools, most of them completely unusable for a typical translator.

    On the online tools... time will tell.

    I agree the situation may change in the future, maybe in very few years but, for a moment, I don't think these tools can compete with traditional desktop solutions.

    You probably won't have had the opportunity to use the Studio Online application that is currently only part of SDLTMS, but this is very good, and if you hide the browser toolbars it looks and feels a lot like working in Studio, even with all the shortcuts etc.

    The problem is not only the environment (if it's almost Studio, it's not very exciting for me...) but the project configuration.
    Most of them are stupid and innefective.
    E.g. if I can't add my huge and carefully compiled termbases to the project, I'll work sensibly slower than in my own desktop environment.

    Cheers
    GG


     
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