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XTM Translation tool
Thread poster: DebCecc

DebCecc
English to Dutch
+ ...
Feb 23, 2011

Hi

Has anyone experience translating with XTM? I have two main clients, one of which has been using XTM for a while and now the other one has switched to the tool as well, after using SDL for years. Frankly, I am very worried, as translating on XTM takes up so much of my time. There seem to be 2 different versions, and frankly the version that my client has started to use recently is worse than the other one. Elsewhere on Proz.com people have discussed the issue with the 10 segments per page, and I too have heard that this will change to 500 segments. Although that will probably be an improvement, there are still so many issues with it that I seriously consider looking for new clients. The tool has practically been forced on me and I am not too happy about that either. Is there anyone who knows more about the tool, who has been using it for quite a while and can provide some reassurance? Thanks.


 

Gulay Baran  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 02:00
Member (2007)
English to Turkish
+ ...
experience with XTM for 2 months Feb 24, 2011

Hi,

I've started to work with XTM since the beginning of January. In general, the tool is not a difficult one to work with. I had a training for about an hour prior to the start of my project and it has been sufficient for understanding the working of the program completely.

I've worked with the previous version so far and can tell that it really makes you slower in comparison with Trados unfortunately. Actually the TM that was provided to translators in our project is quite enough for making you faster but on the other hand, XTM tool is working very slowly. You accept the suggestions made by the TM and try to move forward as fast as possible but the program limits your progression. I think that the most problematic issue on XTM is its display of 10 segments per page. You may have difficulty related to translation speed particularly in the beginning until you adapt to the tool.

Another weakness of the tool is that you have to wait for the translator to finish his/her own segments in order to start your editing/reviewing job. For example, we're completing daily tasks for a few weeks and have to deliver our work at a definite time each day. Therefore I have to wait for the translator to finish his segments and then I can start my work and sometimes try to finish my editing in 2-3 hours instead of 8 hours. So if there is a team consisting of translator, editor and reviewer, everyone in the team should have a close commmunication with each other while using this tool.

Payment is another important issue on working with XTM. If you are a translator, you can have your payment by wordcount as normal but on the condition that you work as an editor for them, they may want you to charge hourly and this may be a problem because of XTM tool's slowness:) Therefore I can suggest you to talk about the payment procedures at the very beginning.

I'll be working on the new version which is 5.5 on the following days and they claim that it'll solve some main problems of the previous version in an efficient way.


 

EKNXTM
Local time: 00:00
Explanation of XTM workflow Feb 24, 2011

Hello and thanks for the comments.

@Gulay - in response to "Another weakness of the tool...."

From experience I am assuming that the reason why you could not access the segments before the first translator was finished is because your client selected a workflow which had fixed steps or you were set as a Reviewer (final stage) which requires that all translation is completed before final review. It is possible in XTM to have full concurrent and simultaneous translation and correction. The project manager can select this, and then the translators / correctors can work simultaneously. If your client selects this option, then this is not a weakness, but was a choice by the client for that job, they must have had their reasons. Perhaps, they will change it in the future if you tell them it would be better for you.

If you would like to see how the workflows are put together, from a project managers view, you can take a quick look at the free trial www.xtm-intl.com/trial or contact me on enedas@xtm-intl.com and I can show you over a web meeting.

@DebCecc

Thanks for your comments and I am sorry that your first experiences were not great, thankfully most translators have a good experience with XTM. I hope we can make your experience better!

As I do not know which company your client is I can only be general and say that all our customers make the choice to use XTM only after a lengthy and very detailed selection process. There are very real benefits to using XTM.

I am glad to confirm that in the new version, coming out early March there are many new features and as my developer has corrected me, it is in-fact up to 250 segments on a page (500 was planned but our customers and translators said 250 was enoughicon_smile.gif

I would be delighted to talk to anyone who has other issues to see how we can help. XTM International is an open and friendly small business, we take what are users say very seriously, so please keep the comments coming. Please feel free to contact me for clarification on any XTM related topics.

Thanks for posting and keep it coming.

All the best,
Elliot
enedas@xtm-intl.com


 

Gulay Baran  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 02:00
Member (2007)
English to Turkish
+ ...
acceleration due to a server upgrade Feb 24, 2011

EKNXTM wrote:

@Gulay - in response to "Another weakness of the tool...."

From experience I am assuming that the reason why you could not access the segments before the first translator was finished is because your client selected a workflow which had fixed steps or you were set as a Reviewer (final stage) which requires that all translation is completed before final review. It is possible in XTM to have full concurrent and simultaneous translation and correction. The project manager can select this, and then the translators / correctors can work simultaneously. If your client selects this option, then this is not a weakness, but was a choice by the client for that job, they must have had their reasons. Perhaps, they will change it in the future if you tell them it would be better for you.



Elliot, thank you very much for your explanation on this issue. Actually, there are 3 linguists that are responsible for translation, editing and reviewing tasks in each language at this project. I'm the second person working as an editor. But you should be right about the selection of work process made by the project manager. They told us that we would have a limited time for the Turkish version so we should work very closely with our teammates and inform each other about our own individual progress to be able to finish our daily tasks.

The good news is that we're experiencing a significant boost in performance and stability on XTM today. Our project manager has said that they made a server upgrade. Again there are 10 segments per page for now but everything is faster in terms of segment closing/opening and page changes:)

Kind regards,

Gulay


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 01:00
French to German
+ ...
What brought me to XTM Cloud Feb 25, 2011

Hello all,
what brought me to XTM Cloud is mainly the fact that I strongly advocate the extended use of LISA formats against proprietary formats for processing translations. So far, and to the best of my current knowledge, only 2 computer-based CAT tools use these formats natively, together with XLIFF.

Another main reason is that XTM Cloud is really a cloud-based software, as opposed to some other tools which require the download of a "client" application. As far as I can tell, such applications come exclusively in one version and will therefore run only under Windows. So - what about Mac and Linux users?

The third main reason is that XTM Cloud supports most - if not all - of the formats used nowadays across the translation industry. I like my current computer-based CAT, but really cannot afford to wait for its next upgrade simply because it cannot process a file in format X in its current version.

As per the "segments per page" issue, I would suggest to XTM to implement a feature allowing the translator/editor to select the number of segments they want to see at any given moment. I personally can live with 5 segments above and 5 segments below the one I am translating.


 

Linh Nguyen  Identity Verified
Vietnam
Local time: 06:00
Member (2007)
English to Vietnamese
+ ...
Still many things to do!!! Feb 27, 2011

I have just started with XTM system one month ago and till now this new system has some problems:
- Slow speed (waste takes more time).
- QA check for each page (waste more time again)
- Unicode font support only, other font type not yet supported (such as Vni for Vietnamese). I noticed that some Vietnamese corruptions occurred.
- Annoying verification process while working on different computers (same user). I could not log in on my mobile for checking new job information (should be inform in notification email).
- Find and replace: working for one page only (takes more time for big translation jobs with many pages).
- Payment system: waitingicon_smile.gif
- Predefined Shortkey Set for SDLX, Wordfast, Trados users: maybe a good suggestion.
- Could not work offline. This is quite important for some countries with poor Internet connection (such as Vietnam)
- Translator could not import/export their own TMs?
- How could translator check the client's wordcount?
- The processing speed depends on server so it could not utilize computer power, maybe a free downloadable client program is better? (same as Across)


At present, in my opinion, this XTM system is suitable for small job under 1k words only. Maybe it's a technology of future but till now, It will be a real pain working slowly online in XTM while some dedicated CAT tools can do better with affordable price.

Best regards,
Linh Nguyen.

[Edited at 2011-02-27 11:26 GMT]


Frank Jensen
 

EKNXTM
Local time: 00:00
Follow up Mar 1, 2011

@Linh - thanks for your message. Please see answers to your comments:

"- Slow speed (waste takes more time)."
This was due to the server, this has now been upgraded.
Also, now in the XTM workbench it is possible to choose how many segments you want to see which will speed things up a great deal, no more waiting for next page...icon_wink.gif

"- QA check for each page (waste more time again)"
This is a useful feature that our customers want and need.

"- Unicode font support only, other font type not yet supported (such as Vni for Vietnamese). I noticed that some Vietnamese corruptions occurred."
Unicode and single and double byte characters supported, can you recommend a a good font for Vietnamese? We can add one ASAP. We have simsun for Chinese, what is good for Vietnamese? Thanks,

"- Annoying verification process while working on different computers (same user)."
This is extremely important for security. All of our customer require this.

"I could not log in on my mobile for checking new job information (should be inform in notification email)."
There is no mobile app for XTM yet... it is not mobile optimized. But we are planning to build apps for Android, Windows and iPhone this year.


"- Find and replace: working for one page only (takes more time for big translation jobs with many pages)."
There is find and replace for whole document, on the left hand tool bar, there is the find and replace button. Also in new XTM 5.5 there is a TM search and replace.

"- Payment system: waiting"
For who? There is one for customers available in XTM Portal.

"- Predefined Shortkey Set for SDLX, Wordfast, Trados users: maybe a good suggestion."
Shortcuts can be customized to any preference, please click on the Settings icon and you can change it.

"- Could not work offline. This is quite important for some countries with poor Internet connection (such as Vietnam)"
XTM is a browser based translation tool for online translation.

-" Translator could not import/export their own TMs?"
This is only if you are using XTM with a LSP/Enterprise. If you have your own XTM Cloud, you can use your own TMs. See www.xtm-intl.com/trial to see, let me know if you want a demonstration.

"- How could translator check the client's wordcount?"
If you click on the METRICS icon on the left hand tool bar, it looks like a pie chart, this will give you word counts and more.

"- The processing speed depends on server so it could not utilize computer power, maybe a free downloadable client program is better? (same as Across)"

"At present, in my opinion, this XTM system is suitable for small job under 1k words only. Maybe it's a technology of future but till now, It will be a real pain working slowly online in XTM while some dedicated CAT tools can do better with affordable price."

For a different opinion please see a recent case study, 1 million words in a week... http://www.xtm-intl.com/files/content/xtm/caseStudies/Case%20Study%20Avantpage.pdf

Thanks for the comments, please keep them coming!
All the best,
Elliot


 

Anna Kowalsk (X)
Local time: 01:00
Polish to English
+ ...
Why do I use XTM May 20, 2011

Hi,

I'm a relative beginner in the translation industry and was looking for a CAT tool that would offer me the most for the least possible price (well, you know how it is when you start running up your own business..).

The other reason for choosing XTM was simply the possibility to work on-line, being able to use different PCs without the necessity to have the software with you at all times in case you had to instal it somewhere..

To cut a long story short, I can afford XTM (I'm paying only for the words I'm actually going to use), it's always there when I need it, it's user friendly - it took me just a couple of hours to master it, I've also set my own shortcuts (settings icon) and the number of segments per page (100 works the best for me). And if anything happens and I can't work it out on my own, I contact the support- they have never let me down so far. Plus, there's been a recent upgrade and version 5.5.1 is now available - seems to be faster...

I definitely recommend XTM (there's a fully functional free trial account available - it's always better to try before you say you don't like it).

Regards


 

netiskiv  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:00
English to French
+ ...
My experience with XTM is dreadful Jun 15, 2011

Hello All,
I use the XTM implementation made by an important translation agency.

I must say first that it is possible to display 50 segments at a time and this is my only positive comment.

From version to version, it goes slower and slower.

Only displaying the files to translate take about 1 minute.

The newest version brought a new area for lowering productivity: with files from 100 to 1500 segments, propagation now takes about 40 seconds. So you have sentence which matches, but, when you arrive to the segment, you have better fill in the translation yourself, otherwise you will have to wait about 40 seconds or more until the initial translation propagates. It takes such a lot of time, that I wait to work at night in the hope the server load will be less!

In my agency, there were projects with erroneous word count. My worst experience was a hole of 16,000 words.

The dictionary in my target language is full of errors, and never learn the corrections a translator makes.

Functions such as find and replace are not properly implemented. Cannot go back, for instance. So I am obliged to loose the segment I have already reached to make a find and replace. Given the huge delay when going from one screen to the other one, it is an important loss of time.

Now, I am wondering, are all of these problems related to a bad development, or is it due to XTM policy that target the agency, not the translator, or is it due to the client's implementation?

To conclude, in my opinion, XTM is not made for translators and is very expensive for the translators.


Frank Jensen
 
RE: My experience with XTM is dreadful Jun 18, 2011

Hello Netiskiv,

I am sorry that you have had a bad experience with XTM. As the technical architect of the system I obviously take a very personal interest in any comments concerning any issues that you may have with the system.

Did you try and contact "support at xtm-intl.com" with your issues? The support team will be able to analyze any performance problems and provide you with a solution very quickly. Obviously something was wrong at the time with the responsiveness of the internet. Our support team can pinpoint the cause and help you. Please contact me as well directly and I will also endeavor to find out what could have been the cause of your problems. Failing that, could you please ask the agency in question to contact us.

We are very keen to hear from you regarding any improvements that you would like to see to the system.

Can you please expand on the word count issue. XTM uses the LISA GMX/V standards for word counts and we are not aware of any issues. Could you also provide some details concerning the French dictionary. We have many French translators using XTM and have had no complaints so far.

We have many very satisfied XTM users both freelance and agencies and XTM is responsible for the translation of hundreds of thousands of words every day into 40 - 50 languages.

From you profile you will be pleased to know that XTM is built totally on XML and Open Standards. XTM is an implementation of the OASIS OAXAL (Open Architecture for XML Authoring and Localization) and uses all of the available L10N industry Open Standards. Its design is completely modular and based on web services. In fact you can drive the whole of XTM via web services. And best of all it runs under Linux (as well as Windows).

Best Regards,

AZ


 

Jerzy Jeczalik  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 01:00
English to Polish
I am quite happy with XTM Jun 21, 2011

I have worked on a few XTM projects, things went pretty smoothly actually. Pretty good support for freelancers as well. The workbench was easy to use for me. Unlike most CAT tools it is very intuitive and just lets me get on with the job of translating. I wish all CAT tools were this easy to use! It automates most things for you. XTM takes care of all your memory - no problems with backups etc. All your memory and terminology is held for you.

 

Remy Blaettler
Local time: 01:00
German to English
+ ...
Surprised? Jun 22, 2011

I work for a Swiss LSP and we work with lots of freelance translators. Some which don't like Trados and some which don't use it. While we actually think that Trados has great features and has improved a lot in the last 2 years, it is still a hassle to work with our freelances.

So we were looking at XTM and figured it would solve most of our issues:
- Freelancers don't need to buy it
- Freelancers don't need to install and maintain it (major issue)
- No package creation - send - open - send back - reopen workflow
- Parallel workflows
- Central TM and Terminology

Now I'm a little suprised to find so many negative comments about it here. Any more poeple who like to work with it? Or what do freelancers prefer?


 

Nora Diaz  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 17:00
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My post from another related thread Jun 27, 2011

Dear Remy,

Please see below:


I saw this thread a few days ago but didn't feel qualified to give an opinion, as I was just getting started with XTM. However, as I come to the end of my first large project with XTM, and after signing in for a trial account to look at all the features, these are my impressions:

1. I have to start out by saying that I'm a Trados/Studio user and have been for many years, so in a way I expected certain things from XTM based on my experience with Trados, which I realize now may not be the best approach.

2. I have done two things over the past week with XTM: I've been working on an actual project set up by a client and I have been trying a small group account where I have complete freedom to set it up anyway I want. I have come to the conclusion that most of my frustrations with the actual project regarding TM and terminology management have to do with the way the project was set up by the client and not with the tool itself. Other than that, the workflow has been smooth, the manual is clear and I was able to some extent to create my own settings, such as shortcuts, to make things flow more smoothly. I didn't experience any of the slow flow some colleagues have been describing here.

3. This has been said before and I have to agree with it: the support at XTM is phenomenal. Several people have been in touch with me to answer my questions, no matter how insignificant, and today two very nice support people from XTM actually called me and we had an online meeting so that we could discuss some behavior I was seeing in the program. They agreed that it was unusual and said it would be fixed by tomorrow. I have never before experienced that level of service. And that was just for a trial account.

4. The one thing the support staff confirmed for me today is that XTM is still in the process of implementing term recognition in their cloud-based tool. So until that is implemented, that's definitely something that's missing in that for me is a major component for a good CAT tool-based workflow.

Having said that, I quickly found a very good workaround to this limitation I've actually started to use even with Trados and Studio: using a text expander as a substitute for a term recognition feature in XTM and as a supplement to Multiterm in Trados products.

You can see how that works in a blog entry I made here:

http://noradiaz.blogspot.com/2011/06/adding-text-expander-to-my-translation.html

I plan on adding some XTM screenshots, but it looks basically the same as with Studio, which you can see on the blog.

So, in conclusion, so far I'm happy with XTM, it's my first cloud-based translation experience and I think it definitely has a lot of potential, especially when it comes to projects that require collaboration.

For now, as I discussed with the sales person who contacted me, I feel that the pricing structure at the freelance level is a little off. I think the word limit is too low for a serious, full-time translator, and I feel anxious just thinking that I will use up my word allocation before the month is over and I will have to end up paying more to finish my work. Perhaps it is difficult for me to wrap my head around that because it's a completely new business model, and because even though it was expensive, with Trados I have complete control over my projects at all times and there are no world limits. In addition to that, I'm a little put off by having to pay for three months up front, and would like to see a per-project pricing option added instead.

However, if I were just starting out, this would definitely be a very attractive option for me as a freelancer.

But for any projects that require a team working together, I would definitely consider XTM, as it allows you to share a TM and a termbase in real time and on the cloud, which would save the team leader the cumbersome process of exchanging TMs and keeping them up to date, and distributing them back to team members.

I almost forgot, but there is one added bonus to using XTM: output formats. This was one of my very first questions before I started trying XTM. As much as I love using Studio, I don't use it for the bulk of my translations because my clients for the most part still require bilingual Word files. As most of you know, Studio doesn't offer the ability to output a bilingual Word file. Well, XTM does.

In trying to find a way to output bilingual Word files in tools other than Trados Workbench, I tried both Wordfast Anywhere and XTM. While both tools produced a bilingual Word file, the one from Wordfast didn't have the right look, while the one from XTM was indistinguishable from one produced by Trados. So that one feature, would be a significant deciding factor if I had to choose between Studio and XTM, because Studio may be laden with features that XTM doesn't yet have, but what good does that do me when I can't output the kind of file my clients require?


 

xALEXx
Local time: 01:00
Polish to German
Import XTM bilingual into Trados TM Jul 6, 2011

Hi, I am using XTM for almost a year now and I don't have porblems with it, although it is considerably slower in use than Trados, especially when the network has interruptions...

I have a question to some advanced users, who also update they Trados TM from a XTM bilingual. I can download a bilingual .xliff file, open it in the Trados Studio editor, save it as a sdl bilingual file but each time I try to import it into my TM i get 0 segments imported! Why is that? Is there any solution?

Cheers


 

EKNXTM
Local time: 00:00
XLIFF, TMX, Import, Export, Trados Jul 6, 2011

Hello Alex,

If you would like to export a TM please use the TM manager and choose TM Export. Or from the Project Editor page, in the Files area you can download the .tmx for the files.

If you contact me directly on enedas@xtm-intl.com we can go through it together.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks.
Elliot


 
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