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QA or QC in Trados - is there a better way?
Thread poster: Susanne Lomander

Susanne Lomander  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 18:36
Swedish to English
+ ...
Oct 11, 2006

I have been using Trados Workbench & Multiterm with Word for a few years, yet I constantly feel like I am missing a quick and reliable way of making sure my translation memory is updated with edits and corrections.

My workflow is to create a copy of the source document and name it my TRADOS working copy. This is where I translate and proofread the document, going TU by TU to manually translate and review each sentence before cleanup.

Then I create another copy (TARGET) which is then Cleaned up and sent to client/agency after a quick superficial review to make sure nothing has been deleted or changed, as formatting often is.

My question is two-fold:

1) Is there any better Quality Assurance / Quality Control step or measure that I am missing or not doing correctly?

2) When and if you get edits back (I usually get the FINAL version without Tracked changes), which is the best - and most accurate - way of ensuring that any edits or changes are updated into the TM?

I usually just open my working TRADOS version (with both source/language), edit the TU in question and then use SET/CLOSE to save it to the TM. But this is time-consuming and not always foolproof (as I have discovered in the past).

Is there a better way?

Any and all input from more experienced users is more than welcome!

Thanks!

Susanne


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 18:36
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
my 2c Oct 11, 2006

1) Is there any better Quality Assurance / Quality Control step or measure that I am missing or not doing correctly?

before delivering, I pretranslate the original file - in essence dumping the work version -. If everything is Ok, there should be no untranslated segments, and if it's not, you trapped a possible problem. When could that happen? One source for sure is changes to the original - inadvertent or deliberate, like editing a badly formatted text -.

2) When and if you get edits back (I usually get the FINAL version without Tracked changes), which is the best - and most accurate - way of ensuring that any edits or changes are updated into the TM?

Same technique applies: if you pretranslate the new version, the changes in the original would be left to you to correct or adjust.

What else:
o spellcheck as often as possible and then one more time.
o do stats with analyze - for your own perusal and for the client, so if there's a discussion about word counts etc, you do have you records.

Otherwise - dont fix what's not broken -.

regards

Vito


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Cecilia Falk  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:36
English to Swedish
Constant updating Oct 12, 2006

Hello,
I spend quite a lot of time updating and maintaining the TMs that I work a lot with (large ongoing projects that have lasted several years). I find this extra (and unpaid) work absolutely necessary, and also very satisfying and rewarding in the long run.
In short:
Every time I get review changes from the client, or decide to change terminology for some other reason, I search the whole TM with the concordance function and implement the changes in all relevant places in the TM, not just in the changed sentence. If the change comes from the client I change CrU to the clients name instead of my own so I know that this is an absolute preference from the client in the future.
If the changes affect many segments in the TM, or if I get an old TM from the client that is not of good quality and needs a lot of changes, I export the TM and make the changes in the exported txt file. The drawback with this is that it does not show in the segment information when the change was made and by whom, and sometimes I do work-arounds with macros to incorporate this information.
This way of working may seem tedious (being unpaid, and all), but in the long run it has proved very satisfying. It means that the TM I work with are as up to date and consistent as possible, which saves a lot of time when using them as there are not several alternative translations to choose between.
Best regards,
Cecilia


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Stefan de Boeck  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 18:36
English to Dutch
+ ...
if you really Oct 12, 2006


2) When and if you get edits back (I usually get the FINAL version without Tracked changes), which is the best - and most accurate - way of ensuring that any edits or changes are updated into the TM?

If you really really really want this:

“Perform an alignment.”

and, on exporting the alignment result, under the winalignExport Tab:
check Export as plain text
in Creation user replace ALIGN! by your own name (that is, the name by which your TM knows you, e.g. SUSANNE)
if you've used any User defined fields, match these

hit Export.

Before importing into WB, set the Formatting penalty to 00%
maybe the alignment penalty too
for Changed TUs, select Keep most recent

hit Import.

It's possible that this won't batch translate your source straight into an updated target (formatting may play too much of a role) but: you already have an updated target; and the (unformatted) update has been added to your TM.

(a good candidate for alignment must be deeply structured, i.e. contain headers down to header -say- 4; when you export these not as plain text, you may end up with an incredibly heavy .txt, which may cause a runtime error when you try to import it)

Well. You may choose not to really really want it.
(I wouldn't. Not really. I'm just thinking this up.)

I usually just open my working TRADOS version (with both source/language), edit the TU in question and then use SET/CLOSE to save it to the TM. But this is time-consuming and not always foolproof (as I have discovered in the past).

How did you happen to discover this?

[Edited at 2006-10-12 11:03]


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Stefan de Boeck  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 18:36
English to Dutch
+ ...
fields Oct 12, 2006

Cecilia Falk wrote:

This way of working may seem tedious (being unpaid, and all), but in the long run it has proved very satisfying. It means that the TM I work with are as up to date and consistent as possible, which saves a lot of time when using them as there are not several alternative translations to choose between.

There would be few people who could get more out of using the Text and Attribute fields (TU labels besides Creation user et al; how many of those can you have?) than you would. Have a look at them, you will find them marvellous little playthings in TM maintenance. Happy reconnaissance!

[Edited at 2006-10-12 18:07]


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Cecilia Falk  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:36
English to Swedish
Using attributes Oct 12, 2006

Saitch is absolutely right, the attributes are a great help in TM maintenence.
I always use these:
PO = PO number (this is for tracability back to earlier projects)
Status, New = I use this in TMs that I get from clients, and then set the same attibute as a filter in order to get all 100% matches in the TM as 99% so that all these segments open for proof-reading the first time around. Once I have proof-read them they become true 100% in the future as they now have the Status attribute New.
Furthermore I have different attributes in different TMs if I need to distinguish between for example text for a user manual and help texts.

Best regards,
Cecilia


[Edited at 2006-10-12 13:36]


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Susanne Lomander  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 18:36
Swedish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Trados Q&A part II - How about overwriting? Oct 13, 2006

Thanks, all, for your input!

I am glad that I don't seem to have missed a step or worked in the wrong order... It is just a nagging doubt I have, that there must be a better way to update/upkeep your TMs...

In the past, I have been doing as Cecilia suggested, but admit that sometimes I don't have time to do TM Maintenance... I am constantly annoyed at the search function in TM that won't get me ALL occurrences of a word, regardless of whether it is capitalized or not. So sometimes I think human error together with imperfect technology just makes TM's 70% reliable, if that. I also work with multiple translations TU's, which I think is practical when translating, but cumbersome during maintenance.

Thanks for the tip on using Attributes, that will certainly help!

One thought which had occurred to me but which I guess I have been too afraid to try with a real working TM. It concerncs overwriting, which perhaps should be tested on a test TM first: OVERWRITE?

What I mean is

1)WinAlign the FINAL version you get back with the original SOURCE,
2) name the import field WA FINAL or something similar so you recognize that this is the client/agency's final delivered version, and then
3) import it all to a TM - but instead of merging the TU's, OVERWRITING the existing (old) ones!!

Wouldn't this be a quick way of replacing all your OLD TU's (ie the working or editing version of a TU) with the client's final version?

Has anyone tried this, or would it cause complete chaos (especially if there are multiple TU's)?

Thanks again for all your clever responses and helpfulness!

Susanne


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Cecilia Falk  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:36
English to Swedish
Overwriting could work... Oct 14, 2006

...if you are careful.

I always, always make a backup before I do anything major with a TM. Before I make the update I use the concordance function on some sentences that I know should be affected. Then I check these same sentences after the update to make sure that the intended result has been achieved. If not, I return to the backup version and try again. Just in case I also keep the backup for a while (actually, forever ).
However, if you use the Overwrite function this means that you loose any other information in the attribute, date and creator fields. This might be OK, and it might not. I use different approaches in different TMs - sometimes it is very important to know where a term originates from, or who created a certain segment.
Also if you use Multiple Translations (which I also find very useful in some projects, but that just as you say can create problems during maintenance), and use WA FINAL as an attribute you might end up with duplicate versions of these segments in the TM because they have different attributes. If this is the case you could try using WA FINAL as the CrU instead (or maybe this is what you meant?).

Best regards,
Cecilia


[Edited at 2006-10-14 14:28]

[Edited at 2006-10-14 14:29]

[Edited at 2006-10-14 14:29]

[Edited at 2006-10-14 18:49]


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Stefan de Boeck  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 18:36
English to Dutch
+ ...
keep most recent Oct 15, 2006

OVERWRITE?

What I mean is

1)WinAlign the FINAL version you get back with the original SOURCE,
2) name the import field WA FINAL or something similar so you recognize that this is the client/agency's final delivered version, and then
3) import it all to a TM - but instead of merging the TU's, OVERWRITING the existing (old) ones!!

Wouldn't this be a quick way of replacing all your OLD TU's (ie the working or editing version of a TU) with the client's final version?


leave unchanged / merge / overwrite only affect the Att & Txt fields of TUs, I think.
keep oldest / keep most recent sets what to do with identical source (+ target) --i.e. the actual content of the TUs, not the labels.
if you want to replace the old TUs: use keep most recent.
it's somewhat bewildering; and I'm not altogether sure of this.
but you'll have noticed that in actual maintenance the merge / overwrite / remove are aimed only at the fields, not the TU content. and if you've seen that "keep most recent" seems logical (it should keep the fields of most recent TU as well; if necessary select new fields/ Add to TM...)

a note: keep most recent or oldest are import options, not general TM options or elsewhere to be found in Maintenance. so this is strictly for importing the alignment...

[Edited at 2006-10-15 19:35]


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