Opinions on QA software
Thread poster: Dan Lucas

Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:28
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
Feb 24, 2015

I am exploring options for improving my quality checking procedures. I use SDL Studio 2014 and that it has reasonable QA features - though it also kicks up time-consuming and unexplained errors - but I would like something more.

I see the odd mention of Xbench.net and thought this might be worth looking at. It has a trial version, but I'm wondering if anybody here is already familiar with Xbench.net and has any first-hand opinions they would like to share, or indeed opinions on any alternatives.

Regards
Dan
PS please note that my language pair is Japanese to English


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claude-andrew  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 17:28
Member (2009)
English to French
+ ...
Tried but not purchased Feb 24, 2015

I found that Xbench (trial) produced considerably more false alarms than true inconsistencies. This was tried on a complex project involving dozens of files - it may not be typical. Anyway I decided not to buy this rather pricey software.

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Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:28
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Not too impressed then! Feb 24, 2015

claude-andrew wrote:
I found that Xbench (trial) produced considerably more false alarms than true inconsistencies.

A client sent back an Xbench analysis of my work once that showed similar false alarms. I thought some of the numerical QA looked useful, however.

Thanks for the comment
Dan


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 09:28
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
Xbench, QA and false positives Feb 24, 2015

All automatic QA tools will give you false positives. In most instances, it is a question of setting up your QA project properly. For example, in Xbench (and in most other QA tools, either internal or external) you can designate one or more glossaries as "key terminology" - that means that your translation will be compared to the key term glossary, and if a segment contains in the source a term that is in the glossary, but doesn't contain the corresponding term in the target, that segment will be flagged.

Since QA tools generally (or at least all those I know) are not able to check morphological variants, this is always going to generate a number of false positives.

In simple terms: if my glossary for Italian has

house = casa,

but my translation has the plural "houses" in the source (e.g. "there were many blue houses in the city"), my translation may be entirely correct ("c'erano molte case blu nella città"), but the QA tool will still flag the term as possibly incorrect, because it found "houses" in the source, but did not find "casa" in the target.

The key term glossary is still very useful; to limit the number of false positives the solution is to include in the key term glossary only essential terms, making sure the glossary is not too long (as a rule of thumb, no more than a couple hundred words). You still want to make sure that the correct terminology has been used, even if that means going through a reasonable number of false positives.

False positives in other types of tests (consistency, numeric, etc.) are always worth checking: Yes, my translation for "10 houses" as "dieci case" may be flagged as incorrect because there was a number in the source, but I spelled it out in the target, but the annoyance of the false positive is more than overcome by the fact that the same test is going to find the place in my translation where the number is actually missing, or incorrect.

As for Xbench in particular: there is still a free version available (version 2.9 downloadable from Xbench.net) it is not as complete as version 3.0, but still very useful.

For a complete introduction to Xbench, you may find my presentation Xbench for Terminology Management and Translation QA (http://www.aboutranslation.com/p/xbench-training.html) interesting as an introduction to the various functionality offered by the program.

[Edited at 2015-02-24 19:50 GMT]


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 17:28
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Moderator of this forum
Try Verifika Feb 24, 2015

http://e-verifika.com/

Highly recommendable software.


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Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:28
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Verifika as contender Feb 24, 2015

Thanks to Natalie and Riccardo for the input. Riccardo, I think that link may be broken? Verifika does seem to have a loyal core of followers.

Dan


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 09:28
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
Link Feb 24, 2015

Dan Lucas wrote:

Thanks to Natalie and Riccardo for the input. Riccardo, I think that link may be broken? Verifika does seem to have a loyal core of followers.

Dan


The correct address is this:

http://www.aboutranslation.com/p/xbench-training.html

It links to a page on my blog About Translation, and on that page there is a Power Point presentation which can be either seen online, or downloaded.


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pep
Local time: 17:28
English to Spanish
Demo videos and trial might help Feb 25, 2015

Dan Lucas wrote:

I see the odd mention of Xbench.net and thought this might be worth looking at. It has a trial version, but I'm wondering if anybody here is already familiar with Xbench.net and has any first-hand opinions they would like to share, or indeed opinions on any alternatives.



This video should give you an idea of how Xbench works with Studio 2014: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daWkATVCkvg

There are other videos about various Xbench functionalities at https://www.youtube.com/user/xbenchdotnet. In particular this playlist is a good way to get up to speed quickly with Xbench: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUVQmKnkffaq4mKYfU2ZMmyYB0VvleloB

You may also want to start a 30-day trial. The trial is for 30 days of use (not calendar days), so typically it lasts a few months if you try it out from time to time, when you have time or when a project happens to be a good fit for it.

Pep.


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Alexander Vareiko  Identity Verified
Belarus
Local time: 18:28
Member (2013)
English to Russian
+ ...
Try Verifika Feb 25, 2015

I've tried to use Xbench, but it have not impressed me. Especially after I discovered Verifika. Verifika benefits are friendly interface and settings allowing much more QA performance than in Xbench and Trados.

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BQuigley  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 17:28
Member (2008)
Dutch to English
I vote for Verifika Jul 26, 2016

Well worth trying... a new client ran my work through Verifika and sent me the report. It caught some errors that memoQ did not. That in itself was sufficient for me to test the trial version. I've only been using it for a few days and the workflow is much faster and more convenient than the clumsy way QA'ing is handled in memoQ. It has already saved me a lot of time and I'm getting quicker the more I use it. The workflow is simple and intuitive and you coast through the suggested fixes. Only slight nag is that if I add terms in memoQ, I have to re-import the term base into Verifika, but that's a small time cost compared to the overall time saved... and the improved QA. (Over the years, I've become a bit jaded about software, but when I encounter a new product like this that really helps us out, I spread the word. ((BTW, same goes for Translation Office 3000 for billing clients.)))

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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 17:28
Member (2016)
Missing categories? Jul 27, 2016

Which categories (apart from the numbers check) do you find most useful in your verifier software, whereas your CAT tool is missing them?

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BQuigley  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 17:28
Member (2008)
Dutch to English
useful QAs checks, support response Aug 10, 2016

So far, I really like the following:
1. catches number errors better.
2. sentence length, too short or too long.
3. matching parentheses.
4. same target as source.
5. you can protect locked segments, but still change them if in error.
6. checking terminology usage is much, much quicker.
7. same for spelling.

Side note... their license server was down over the weekend and I was not able to use Verifika. I sent the company a complaint, namely, we're 24/7 now and a down server should not prevent us from using the software. Response? They created a new version within two days to address the issue! Nice, very nice.


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CafeTran Training
Netherlands
Local time: 17:28
Member (2016)
Thanks! Aug 10, 2016

BQuigley wrote:

So far, I really like the following:
1. catches number errors better.


Could you please give some examples for this item (the other ones are clear to me ).


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IanDhu  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 17:28
Member (2005)
French to English
Xbench and PerfectIt Aug 10, 2016

I have installed a trial version of Xbench, which I agree with other contributors is cumbersome, ruling out upgrading. It should not be unleashed in the hands of clients as a touchstone of quality, but used rather laboriously to root out errors in CAT bilingual files.

For single-language editing in my native English, I have a relatively old edition of Perfectit:

http://www.intelligentediting.com/

Again, editorial discernment is needed. However, style sheets can be customised and loaded in the recent versions.

I hope to have contributed my two pennyworth of help.

With kind regards,

Adam Warren
(IanDhu - translator 41189)


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