Is Trados useful for someone without experience?
Thread poster: mariana ruberto (X)

mariana ruberto (X)
Local time: 11:23
Spanish to English
+ ...
Nov 16, 2006

Hi! I would like to know whether the TRADOS can be used by someone with no experience with it.

Thanks for your helpicon_smile.gif

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2006-11-16 22:27]


Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:23
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Trados (or any other CAT tool) might be useful Nov 16, 2006

but don´t expect it doing the work for you.
The usefulness of such tools depends mainly on the kind of jobs you have. If you are translating structured text, where it is likely, that there might be interactions between texts (ie manuals, contracts, bilance sheets and similar), than you will profit from such tool quite quickly. On the other hand it is almost completly useless for books or poetry.

Should you give a CAT a try, please consider, that you shall start thinking differently, when translating. With a CAT you start working in a very structured way. This - and the usage of the tool itself - are the two most demanding factors when starting to use such a tool.

Kind regards


Heike Behl, Ph.D.  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:23
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
Yes. Nov 16, 2006

How easy it's use will be for you, however, is a difficult question to answer as your background and general experience with computers and software will make quite a difference.

Everyone of us had to start using Trados (or any similar program) at some point without having had any previous experience with it.icon_smile.gif

So in order to gain the experience that will help you take full advantage of the Trados features, there is no other way than to simply start using Trados (or another comparable CAT tool). In the beginning, it might not be very helpful and even slow you down. So try it with a project where you're not under time pressure (and make sure you always back up your files - just in case!). Just don't give up too quickly when things don't quite work right away. Read the manual (which sometimes does include some useful information), go through the tutorial, and if that doesn't help, post your questions here.

Trados will be useful even for someone without experience because by using it, you will gain the necessary experience. IMO, the use of Trados or any similar CAT tool is a tremendous help for a translator, even if there is no available translation memory. I use it whenever possible.

[Edited at 2006-11-16 23:08]


Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Look at the demo first Nov 17, 2006

Trados and SDLX and Transit and probably DejaVu offer demos, that you can download and play. The demo is interactive and you will soon know quite a lot.
In fact I learned from the Trados demo how to use Wordfast. If your customers do not require you to use a specific tool but you yourself feel the need to get used to a translation tool you might consider using Wordfast with translations in MS Word.
Even if you translate novels a translation tool might speed you up.

All these tools offer free evaluation for at least a month.




esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
Member (2006)
English to Russian
+ ...
And what is this question about? Nov 17, 2006

Mariana_1 wrote:

Hi! I would like to know whether the TRADOS can be used by someone with no experience with it.

I really don't understand the question. Everybody who uses or used Trados had no experience with it — untill he actually started using it.

Trados includes some tutorials that are quite helpful and not so hard to understand — just go through them.


Marko Blagojevic
English to Serbian
+ ...
No, but . . . Nov 17, 2006

Mariana_1 wrote:

Hi! I would like to know whether the TRADOS can be used by someone with no experience with it.

Thanks for your helpicon_smile.gif

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2006-11-16 22:27]

No it cannot, but in time it will be useful when you gain experience in using Trados.
First off all you have to spend money to buy it and so on.
If you use it it for your personal benefit it can help you when translating in the future.
You will realize in the end that when you start using it for others it will cut your profit and you'll end up doing work for others, that you'll be saving money for them and wasting your time and money.

Imagine there are three black and white cows in my stable.
I'll pay you 1 Euro per cow for milking it.
Now imagine I make you the same offer but this time I send you to perform the job in a stable where the same three black and white cows are togather wit another hundred colourfull cows. I'll still pay you just 3 Euros.

Best regards and have fun,


Dr. Jason Faulkner  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:23
Member (2006)
Spanish to English
It certainly makes you more productive Nov 17, 2006

As one who suffered for years without Trados, I can say that it makes a big difference. I started using Trados a few months ago. I went through the tutorials in a couple of hours and then put it to work. Since my projects tend to have a lot of repetitions, it really saved me from a lot of copy/paste operations. Also, I love how it keeps the source text above your translation. I used to waste a lot of time just trying to find my place on the source text.

You really do have to go through the tutorials to understand how to use it, but it is worth the investment.




Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:23
German to English
It will take a while to recoup your investment Nov 18, 2006

Translation memory tools -- all of them, not just Trados -- become more useful over time. Unless you get jobs with lots of repetitions, it may take up to a year before you see any measurable gains in productivity. In fact, your productivity may decline a little with the first few jobs as you learn how to use the translation tool.

There are some limitations you should be aware of. For example you can't work directly with PDF files (the archives have lots of answers to this problem). If you get a lot of PDF files, you may want to invest in a scanner and good optical character recognition software for those files scanned as images, rather than created directly from a word processing program or spreadsheet.

Some types of documents, such as marketing texts or those requiring creative writing, don't lend themselves readily to using a translation memory program (although it can be useful for keeping consistent terminology).

You will also learn the true meaning of GIGO -- garbage in, garbage out.


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