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Dec 19, 2009

MemoQ Fest 2010

Earlier this year, Kilgray held the first MemoQ Fest in Budapest after a year of rapid development and progress with the company's flagship application that brought it from the status of an interesting but somewhat impractical newcomer to the TEnT scene to a serious contender for a championship title. Before attending the event last April, I had tested MemoQ off and on for about a year, but I had not been satisfied that it would work for me. Then along came version 3.5 shortly before the conference, and an introduction to it as well as success stories from corporate, agency and freelance users finally pushed me to use the latest version for serious work, not just tests. And for the last seven months I have done just that.

On the whole I am very satisfied with MemoQ as readers of this blog have probably noted. There are some behaviors of the editor module which drive me nuts, and I am not very happy with the program's performance tuning when I use large databases, and I miss certain basic features that I have taken for granted with Déjà Vu X, but MemoQ has brought many unique capabilities to my business which were lacking in the tools I used otherwise (mostly DVX, Trados and Star Transit). The filters for various formats often proved better than SDL Trados or DVX, the ability to import unsegmented content from TTX files (or even do a TTX without segmentation), reasonably stable bilingual Trados exports (though perhaps in need of a few rules, like blocking or converting hard returns within segments), seriously cool server capabilities, relatively fast, trouble-free data import and export, TM-driven segmentation and more. Oh yes, and my favorite, if trivial feature: the ability to customize and save keyboard configurations, so the ergonomics of my MemoQ installation are much like my DVX. No disorientation like I used to experience all the time when switching between DVX and Trados.

MemoQ Fest 2009 opened up more than just technical possibilities for me. It gave me several days of opportunity for private discussions with ordinary users, who shared personal stories of the excellent support they had received from the Kilgray team long before I ever heard of those guys. And of course we all had a lot of fun. Hard not to in a city as beautiful as Budapest when you get to spend the days around nice people with good attitudes and ideas.

So when I got the e-mail from Sandor Papp of Kilgray announcing the call for papers and registration for MemoQ Fest 2010, the decision to attend was pretty much a no-brainer. Especially given the impending release of MemoQ version 4. A rather awful personal schedule in the last few weeks has prevented me from attending the various overview webinars so far, but I know enough about the plans for version 4 to know that it will only improve my opinion of this software and the team behind it. The development and release schedule has in fact slipped a bit compared to announcements earlier this year. But not by much, really, and not without significant advance notice and good justifications. (At the same time various competitors have either released crap on schedule that should have been kept in development for another 6 months or passed a promised release deadline and said nothing at all.)

I'm looking forward to a few fun days with the Kilgray team and its fan base... uh, I mean customers... and the opportunity to learn a lot more about how to get the most out of my personal software investment as well as how clients of mine might benefit from developments in MemoQ Server technology. Since it's a particular interest of mine, I'm also considering a brief talk on tool interoperability for those who must in one way or another integrate MemoQ with other tools such as Trados, Star Transit or DVX in a project. With that in mind, I'll probably publish snippets of relevant information here or on my Facebook page (depending on which format proves more practical for organizing) as preparation. Stuff like the old instruction sets I wrote for editing Trados bilingual files with DVX, etc. If there are any particular things on your wish lists in this regard, let me know.

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