Macintosh, CAT tools and technical (medical) texts
Thread poster: Fiona Grace Peterson

Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:18
Member
Italian to English
Aug 29, 2008

Hi all,

I'm hoping this is the right place to post this, and hoping someone can help me.

Up to now I've felt no need for a CAT tool given the fairly general nature of the texts I translate. I've used Wordfast when clients demand Trados, since the two are compatible, and that has worked fine so far. But I've never liked Wordfast, found it annoyingly unreliable even in highly repetive texts, and now that my three years have expired I'm unwilling to fork out the money yet again. I find this three-year licence period pretty cheeky too, but perhaps it's the same for all CAT tools, I haven't got as far as exploring it yet.

Quick question - are there any CATs out there where you pay the licence fee once and that's it? (As it should be, IMO).

But that's not what I came to ask.

After umpteen problems with my PC, I'm thinking of investing in a Mac. (Just looking at these beauties makes me drool...) I'm also specialising in the field of medicine, but am not sure how the market for these translations is in terms of agency demands. Do they generally expect translators to use a CAT tool? Of course it's always possible to refuse, but if I don't have one and 90% of agencies demand one, I'd be cutting myself out of a lot of work. And which one? Trados/SDLX I presume...

However, I've noticed that most CATs do not run on the Mac platform. Okay, so I know I can partition my hard disk and run Windows allowing me to run Trados, or I could run two hard disks, one for Windows and one for Mac. But the very point of getting a Mac is to get away from Windows... And surely working in Trados only when a client demand it if this is an occasional thing rather defeats the point of using a CAT (ie. building up TMs and so on).

So I guess my question is can I successfully work in the medical sector on a Mac without running the Windows environment and having to rely on a tool like Trados, using instead something like Swordfish?
What's the trand for the future in your opinion?

All opinions welcome!


[Edited at 2008-08-29 11:39]

[Edited at 2008-08-29 11:43]


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:18
Italian to English
+ ...
Are you sure you have to pay again for WF? Aug 29, 2008

As far as I can remember, you can carry on using the same version of WF indefinitely on the same licence for as long as you like - you only have to pay for another licence if you want to upgrade once the three-year period has expired, which is fair enough IMO. So you do only pay once for a given version.

[Edited at 2008-08-29 11:50]


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Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:18
Member
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Don't understand the three-year rule Aug 29, 2008

I had to re-format my computer and applied for another install number and was told the three years had expired and I had to pay again. I have looked at the end user agreement and it really isn't clear, a bit like the Wordfast manual, or perhaps I'm just not bright enough to understand it. In any case I've found the program notoriously unreliable, giving me let's say 67% matches, then refusing to propose very short 100% matches translated just lines before.




[Edited at 2008-08-29 11:54]


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:18
Italian to English
+ ...
OK, I see what you mean Aug 29, 2008

Fiona Peterson wrote:

I had to re-format my computer and applied for another install number and was told the three years had expired and I had to pay again. I have looked at the end user agreement and it really isn't clear, a bit like the Wordfast manual, or perhaps I'm just not bright enough to understand it. In any case I've found the program notoriously unreliable, giving me let's say 67% matches, then refusing to propose very short 100% matches translated just lines before.




[Edited at 2008-08-29 11:54]



It might have been worth contacting them and explaining that you were still using the old version on the same computer - you never know, they might have made an exception for you. In my experience they're pretty human, for a software company

As for the matches problem, if you've hit reorganise and it still happens, I can't help you


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kimadil
United States
Local time: 19:18
English to Arabic
+ ...
Run windows inside OSX Aug 29, 2008

hello,
I have been think about the same thing. There is a solution!
I don't want to have a dual boot on my mac. Macs are too good for windows.
Install a virtual machine and run windows inside mac. Then install all your Windows software, work, when done, close virtual machine
I think there are some free, open source one on the web but also commercials ones. I like Parallels Desktop.
Check it out


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Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:18
Member
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Market trends Aug 29, 2008

Thanks kimadil and Marie-Helene for your input.

I guess my question is less about CATs and compatibility (I know there's a lot here on the forums about that already), and more about agency demands (how many agencies working with medical texts demand the use of Trados?) and market trends (what do you think the future holds as far as demand for a particular CAT is concerned?)

Writing the last question, it seems like a bit of a rhetorical question/no-brainer, but I'd be interested to hear your views anyway. From what I read on the site, it seems as many love them as shun them...


ETA: to kimadil, thanks for your suggestion, I'm just not sure how stable my system would be - what are your thoughts?

[Edited at 2008-08-29 13:52]


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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 00:18
Portuguese to English
+ ...
I'm a Mac user in the midst of the same issue Aug 29, 2008

Hi Fiona,
I switched to Mac the end of last year. From then until now I haven't had any occasion to use a CAT tool. I had used Trados in the past and didn't enjoy the experience, so I was hoping I could avoid CAT tools altogether.

However, I am now discovering that there are some companies that demand CAT tools for all their jobs, so I decided to check out the options for Mac. The first one, which is a free open source program, was OmegaT. I didn't get too far with this one because it doesn't accept .doc files (I have Microsoft Office for Mac installed on my machine). There's probably some way around that, but I haven't looked into it yet. Meanwhile, I bought Parallels Desktop from ebay and plan to install Windows XP on my Mac. Like you, I really have no use for Windows, but I'd be using it only for the CAT tool, and at the moment it seems like the easiest solution.

Good luck...Mac is the BEST and you're gonna love it!

Amy


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analytical  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 04:18
German to English
+ ...
Parallels works really well! Aug 29, 2008

Hi everyone,

I can certainly agree with Amy: Mac is the best and I have been loving it for more than 20 years!

Two years ago, I had to use Windows for a specific project and used Parallels Desktop to allow me to have both Windows and Mac systems running at the same time. This way it was possible to work in Word under MacOS and copy/paste the text in the CMS that was running under Windows.

Now I am using Parallels to access some electronic dictionaries (Langenscheidt, for instance) that only run under Windows. I have a 23 inch monitor and I have the Windows desktop open in the upper left hand of the screen, which leaves enough space to work on my Mac-based documents.

Although I am using Wordfast most of the time (no problems so far), I have been considering working with Trados since so many outsourcers seem to require it these days. Haven't made a decision yet, though.

So, to get back to Fiona, for more information on Parallels, check out these websites:
http://www.parallels.com/
http://www.parallels.com/en/products/desktop/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallels_Desktop_for_Mac
http://www.macworld.com/article/58953/2007/07/parallels3.html

All the best and have a good weekend!

Claudia


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Laura Lucardini  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:18
English to Italian
Mac & Parallels Aug 29, 2008

Hi Fiona,
I have been successfully using Trados on Parallels Desktop for a couple of years now, and can recommend it. As to moving to a Mac... do it, and you won't regret it!

Ciao,
Laura


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xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:18
German to English
+ ...
Macintosh, CAT tools and technical (medical) texts Aug 29, 2008

Amy Duncan wrote:

The first one, which is a free open source program, was OmegaT. I didn't get too far with this one because it doesn't accept .doc files (I have Microsoft Office for Mac installed on my machine). There's probably some way around that


There is indeed: convert your .doc files .odt in NeoOffice, translate, then convert back.

Marc


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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 00:18
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Too much trouble Aug 29, 2008

Marc P wrote:

Amy Duncan wrote:

The first one, which is a free open source program, was OmegaT. I didn't get too far with this one because it doesn't accept .doc files (I have Microsoft Office for Mac installed on my machine). There's probably some way around that


There is indeed: convert your .doc files .odt in NeoOffice, translate, then convert back.

Marc


I stopped using NeoOffice because parts of my documents kept disappearing. I found it to be too unstable.


Amy


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Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:18
Member
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks everyone Aug 30, 2008

for your input, it is very much appreciated. I'm certainly thinking hard about getting a Mac, and Parallels sounds like the way to go should I decide to use Trados.

Many thanks again.


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