How to work with RTFs in TagEditor?
Thread poster: xxxIanW
xxxIanW
Local time: 09:05
German to English
+ ...
Mar 2, 2005

Hi there,

I have Trados Freelance 6.5.1.406 running on Windows XP.

I've often wondered - particularly after painstakingly reformatting a mangled Word file - if it is possible to use Tag Editor for Word files. I seem to recall Ralf saying that Trados are working on it, so presumably that's still in the pipeline.

A few days ago, I read a thread (which I can no longer locate) in which Jerzy mentioned the possibility of translating RTFs using TagEditor. I tried opening an RTF in TagEditor, got lots of different error messages and then went back and had another look at past threads in this forum.

The conclusion I came to then is that I need to create "tagged RTF files" (or "Workbench RTFs") but have no idea how to go about it. If anyone could explain how this is done, or let me know where I can read up on it, I'd be very grateful.

Also: are there any particular hazards associated with converting DOC files to RTF files, or RTF files to tagged RTF files? If so, I'd be very interested to hear about them.

Thanks


Ian


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tectranslate ITS GmbH
Local time: 09:05
German
+ ...
No can do. Mar 3, 2005

Hi Ian,

to cut a long story short: You cannot create tagged files from Word files.
The tagged file method is intended to allow people to edit files in various DTP formats such as FrameMaker, Quicksilver or similar using Trados without actually owning the DTP program.

But since everybody has Word already, there exists no filter that would convert it to tagged format for use in TagEditor.

Maybe this'll change in the future - we'll see.

HTH,
Benjamin


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Antoní­n Otáhal
Local time: 09:05
Member (2005)
English to Czech
+ ...
via OpenOffice? Mar 6, 2005

I have been wondering about this option for some time too - some clients use rahter complex Word files, so such a feature might be useful, at least sometimes. If you save a Word file under OpenOffice, and rename the extention of the "OpenOffice native format" to .zip, you can see that their format is just a zip file. An .xml version of the Word file is in there and you can open it in Tag Editor.

There are two things I have not been able to resolve:

(1) How to properly define the .xml format to be able to work with the text resonably (and is it at all possible?)

(2) If you get sufficently familiar with xml, you may be able to resolve (1); but when you finish your translation and save the translated xml, the way back through OpenOffice to Word seems a difficult one as well; and it is not clear (to me) how the resulting file will look like in Word.

If anyone knows more about the topic, I will be very happy to learn about their ideas and/or experience.

Antonin


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tectranslate ITS GmbH
Local time: 09:05
German
+ ...
No out-of-the-box solution Mar 6, 2005

That's exactly the reason why I started my post by saying that I was cutting a long story short. There certainly are ways to convert Word documents into a format that can be parsed and edited using TagEditor. In the case of OpenOffice, all you need is the DTD file that is used by OpenOffice and that should be somewhere in your OO installation folder. Import that settings file into TagEditor and voilà - you can process the documents mentioned by Antonin.

However, there exists no automated process that will "unmangle" poorly formatted documents. All you get through the process described above is a mangled tag file for translation in an editor that doesn't even represent the document in a WSIWYG fashion. Hooray.

Thus, TagEditor will not help you solve the problem that many authors just don't know how to properly handle their tools to create well structured, easily editable documents. In my experience, this and the poor writing and didactic skills of many of our clients are the main obstacles to producing an efficient, high-quality translation. And no technical advances will help us with this unless our clients change their ways.

Again, to make it short, if the document is mangled, you'll have to unmangle it one way or the other. By hand.

Still, have a nice weekend, everyone!

Benjamin


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xxxIanW
Local time: 09:05
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Benjamin Mar 6, 2005

OK, thanks for clearing that up, Benjamin.

All the best


Ian


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:05
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Oh, I wasn´t precise enough, I´m afraid Mar 6, 2005

I got a project from my customer to translate in TAG Editor, allthough these were Word files.
They were somehow able to transfer Worf files into TAG-editable files.
I asked why, and the reason was the bad formating in Word in a lot of tables. This must have worked very good, but I don´t know the filter. And I´m not sure if I get it to know, but nevertheless I shall try and ask them.
If I know more, I´ll post this here.

Kind regards
Jerzy

PS
I just tried with a simple Word file.
After saving it as RTF (the OLD rtf-format, called Word 97-2004&6.0/95 rtf) I was able to open that file in TAG Editor.
However, I was not able to open a Word file with tables, saved in this way.

[Edited at 2005-03-06 12:29]


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Antoní­n Otáhal
Local time: 09:05
Member (2005)
English to Czech
+ ...
To tectranslate (Benjamin): OpenOffice DTD Mar 6, 2005

Well, I tried using the OpenOffice's DTD, of course; but what I got was not satisfactory; so I hoped that the xml structure file could be defined in a better way (perhaps better corresponding to the underlying Word file).

You couldn't be more true about "abuse" of Word tools - I meet inefficient and unreasonable solutions quite often (and some people seem to think that MS Word is a DTP tool...).

My idea was that perhaps xml might be a way of "translating their chunks of text properly" without bothering about the graphical layout and all similar issues, which would be left as-is - since I am only paid for a language translation, I hate losing a lot of time on correcting their formatting and other aspects. As it is, there is no other way but doing it, if I am to be able to process their files at all (I mean, using Trados or whatever CAT tool).

I am sorry to hear that this is not likely to be possible now or in the future - it is what you are saying, isn't it?

Have a nice time,

Antonin


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:05
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
If I understood everything properly Mar 6, 2005

you wanted to get "plain text" somehow extracted to work on it and then get it reimported to the file where it originally was, keeping the text formatting as it was previously?
If this is what you wish, so I´m afraid I cannot see any possibility to get it work this way.
Simply for that reason, that any program isn´t able to differ, where what shall be bold or italic in a text, when you go into another language.
Trados (or other CATs) handle this with TAGs. These are at least what you as translator need to place in the text in order to get it formatted as it was previously.
So we work on all tagged formats in Trados (with exception for Word, which is handled directly). And this is advantage or disadvantage - depends on what you get and how you handle that.
Other CATs transfer Word via RTF (at least SDLX and Transit do). But then it is very likely to damage the structure of the document. You cannot convert any Word file to RTF and then convert it back to doc without damage.

Would people, who use the DTP tools or Word format the documents as they are supposed to, then we (translators using CATs) would have no problems with handling those files.
I have often spoken with my customers about this problem. Many of them are even not aware, that such problem does exist. A lot of them are designer or so-called DTP specialists, but are using the tools as would they have a very old typewritter. I asked one of my customers, a big agency, working with CAT since very long time and processing such file formats, as QXP for MAC or Interleaf/Quicksilver, if they didn´t try to explain the authors, that badly formatted documents may cause a lot of mistranslations and additional work (ie. removing unnecessary line breaks, tabulators, spaces and so on). Their answer was very interesting, because they allways try to show the authors, why and where something should be changed. But the answer of the authors was very stupid, as mostly they tell, that they work in this way for years and it is good, or they do not have the time to create all indents and so on...
And Word files are often created by people, who even don´t know what an indention is. No wonder, how they are formatted.

Thus no easy way to handle them. And handling a bad formatted file in Word or in TAG Editor does not mean much difference. IMO it is then better to stay in Word - as you can allways correct the formatting and see what happens, while in TAG Editor you must close the file, reopen in Word, change formatting and start over again. Formatting changes in TAG Editor are by design not intended.

Regards
Jerzy


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