Article: Handling PDF Documents
Thread poster: Staff Staff
Local time: 18:59
Jul 29, 2005

This topic is for discussion of the translation article "Handling PDF Documents".


English to Chinese
Agree and Disagree Jun 16, 2006

Agree: Yes, we have to forget to edit PDF, particularly for translation by CAT tools.
Disagree: Our 5 years' experience in tranlsating PDFs by Trados have paved a clear way to deliver expected results, its visual quality is as the same as the orginal ones, the file from single sheet of marketing brochure to 3000 pages machine documentation, either for web publishing or for pressing, not yet fail to process so far today.
Yes, PDF is hard to work with, and also yes is workable for translation from points of resulting reliablity and cost.


English to Czech
linux has an excellent pdf editor ( Sep 17, 2006

We have been working on a pdf editor and the result can be found at

With this tool you can make anything with pdf files. There is a balance between the more you know the pdf specification the more you can edit pdffiles. But the graphical environment provides sufficient features for every day pdf editing.


David Jacques  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:59
Member (2011)
German to English
PDF conversion impossibility Nov 9, 2014

This is an insoluble problem - the formatting in the conversion is always poor and often entire pages vanish. The agency / client then complains. I know of a translator who now refuses to accept files in any format other than WinWord.
The trouble is that agencies never warn you. One in the UK openly admits they cannot perfectly replicate a pdf in any conversion - but require freelancers working for them to do so!
The agencies I love are the ones that send me such files on a Friday evening and then go home. Delivery Monday 9 a.m. I've just finished one and discovered it's missing two entire pages - in the file the agency sent me dragged and dropped into Abby Fine Reader and claimed to be a complete Word file. Since the original was a scanned fax in pdf format the result's a mess. All my fault, of course.
A pity we cannot all get together and refuse pdf files altogether.
One can hope, of course, that SDL or Kilgray or someone will come up with a CAT programme able to deal with this format. Don't hold your breath.


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Article: Handling PDF Documents

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