formatting in Wordfast
Thread poster: karen henry

karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:40
French to English
Jul 5, 2012

I've just started using Wordfast Classic and the first few documents were fine, but the last one that I translated in Wordfast had a table in it and this seemed to cause a problem -- there were extra pages in the middle of the table (the table was several pages long) with just one line of the table and no text, and the last two sentences in a text above the table came our as separate sentences, each one on a different line, as opposed to being included in the main text. One of the sentences was also shifted forwards (not lined up to the margin).

My questions are: does this happen often or perhaps I did something wrong? Should you always check documents once they've been cleaned up? Obviously this isn't a problem if the document is not very long but what about one that is very long? Does this mean it's better to proof read the document once it's cleaned up? So far, I've been doing this before clean-up so that I can double check with the source text.

I hope this is clear!? Thanks for any advice


 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
@Karen Jul 5, 2012

Hello Karen, perhaps it was a so-called 'rogue' doc, it was OCR'ed or had some other nuances, e.g. external reference, embedded objects or something. A few times I had a similar case with HTML tables saved as DOC, but cannot recall for sure. Also note that original and translated text length often may vary and if there was a relevant paragraph options then it will be reformatted.

As for your questions,
1) with regular documents it doesn't happed often
2) yes
3) yes, but I prefer doing it via PlusTools Align option and prefer a hardcopy
4) yes, at every stage

As a rule of thumb: if it even looks complicated then it will be rather complicated; if it seems simple then it doesn't mean a thing)


 

christela (X)
Some answers Jul 5, 2012

karen henry wrote:

My questions are: does this happen often or perhaps I did something wrong?

I can't remember having had problems with WF Classic in combination with tables in the eight years I use it.

Should you always check documents once they've been cleaned up?

Yes, always of course!!!
Just in case:
- you made an error (for instance, deleting a segment marker)
- the software didn't clean up entirely (sometimes this happens if there is a figure in it, then you have to clean up a second time)
- you forgot something (for instance, a heading or a footer, or a text box)
- target text is longer than the source text: always check titles, page cuts, widows and orphans, etc.
- a figure disappeared or is not in the right place, or is too big
=> best check is to have source and target displayed simultaneously on your screen.

Obviously this isn't a problem if the document is not very long but what about one that is very long?

No particular problems for long documents.
Does this mean it's better to proof read the document once it's cleaned up? So far, I've been doing this before clean-up so that I can double check with the source text.

Of course, you check two times, before and after cleaning up, and better yet, three times (print it out and check every word on a printed copy). But this is not particular to Wordfast, I do this for each translation.


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:40
Spanish to English
+ ...
What I do Jul 5, 2012

If issues like this crop up in WF Classic, I save the table in a separate doc as TXT (text only). This way you get only the text and no table boxes, which I can usually process no problem. Then I can usually run the original doc through Wordfast and just green light it all the way. Or else you can past in the table contents, but that takes more time.

Someone else will probably appear soon with a more suitable solution, but mine usually works for me.

[Edited at 2012-07-05 09:28 GMT]

PS: I don't think you've "done anything wrong". Tables and text boxes, inserted graphics and images, in fact most formatting aspects, can be a potential minefield. That's why I tell my clients anything that causes hitches like these is not my responsibility, but theirs, and they should try to take this into account.

[Edited at 2012-07-05 09:31 GMT]


 

Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:40
Finnish to French
Possible workaround Jul 5, 2012

neilmac wrote:
PS: I don't think you've "done anything wrong". Tables and text boxes, inserted graphics and images, in fact most formatting aspects, can be a potential minefield.

I agree: due to the way it works, Classic is at its best when dealing with relatively simple layouts. If the layout of a document is very complex (lots of tables, pictures, text boxes etc.), one way to "sanitize" it is to use Pro as a pre- and post-processing tool, as shown here:

http://wordfast.fi/blog/cat-tools/2012/03/04/translate-any-format-in-wordfast-classic-with-wordfast-pro-3/

It adds a bit of overhead at the beginning and at the end of the process, but makes the actual translation much smoother.


 

karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:40
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Wordfast Pro Jul 5, 2012

[quote]Dominique Pivard wrote:

one way to "sanitize" it is to use Pro as a pre- and post-processing tool, as shown here:

http://wordfast.fi/blog/cat-tools/2012/03/04/translate-any-format-in-wordfast-classic-with-wordfast-pro-3/


Thanks for your answer. Wouldn't it just be easier to translate in Wordfast Pro if you've got it? Does this mean the Pro version is better in that it can deal with more complicated files? This leads me onto another question that has crossed my mind: do some people use both versions to translate and is it a problem having both on the same computer?


 

Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:40
Finnish to French
You can use Pro directly! Jul 6, 2012

karen henry wrote:
Thanks for your answer. Wouldn't it just be easier to translate in Wordfast Pro if you've got it?

Yes, if you are as comfortable with Pro as with Classic, by all means use Pro to translate such a file. There is no law that says you MUST translate all Word documents in Classic!
karen henry wrote:
Does this mean the Pro version is better in that it can deal with more complicated files?

One advantage of Pro (and similar tools with a dedicated environment, like memoQ, SDL Trados Studio, Déjà Vu etc.) is that they insulate you against the pecularities of tricky documents: whether a sentence is in a table, in a text box, in a header or in a footnote, it looks just the same in Pro.
karen henry wrote:
This leads me onto another question that has crossed my mind: do some people use both versions to translate and is it a problem having both on the same computer?

Pro and Classic can be installed on the same computer without any problem, as they don't interfer with each other in any way. What you have to be careful about, however, is not to have both of them open with the same TM defined as active. Pro needs exclusive access to its TM's and it will be upset if another application (Word/Classic) is trying to access them at the same time. You will also have problems if you try to open a Pro TM in Olifant or in Notepad, while Pro is accessing it.


 

karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:40
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
@Dominique Jul 6, 2012

That's all very clear, thanks!

 


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