Feb 24, 2009

Finding your stopping point in the Trados jungle

In a recent online discussion, the question was asked how one could determine the point at which work stopped the night before when working in Trados. A number of suggestions were made. I rather cheekily suggested doing the work in DVX so the bookmarks feature or even the program's memory of the project's scroll status could be taken advantage of, another person suggested using the Workbench feature for changing the colors of translated text (only applicable if translating with the macros in Word) and most had some scheme in which they would type a bunch of nonsense characters, insert their dog's name or whatever. I'm always a little skeptical of adding nonsense text because I might overlook it if I'm tired. I know this should not happen, and it never has, but I'm paranoid.

The "winning suggestion" in my mind is to use the comments feature in both Word and TagEditor. These comments are easily found and removed later and do not disrupt the text. Kudos to Marie-Claude Falardeau, an English to French translator, for that suggestion, which I had overlooked in all the baseline noise until the ever-astute technowizard Ben Pischner pointed it out.


  1. Since I work in OmegaT most of the time, I use the Ctrl+U key combination to get to the next untranslated segment. If I stopped one segment before the one that OmegaT takes me to, I can easily move one segment backwards. But usually I mark segments that need further attention with '###', which allows me to use the search function later on and visit all the segments with that mark. Of course you have to develop some sort of habit to actually check for these kind of marks when you make use of them, but that is what I do, if not immediately then when I do my last check on the final document, and ### is absolutely striking, you just can't overlook it. It never happened to me.

  2. I usually remember where I've stopped, but if it is a particularly large document I will just hit "Translate to Fuzzy" until it stops where I stopped.

  3. I thought of that translate to fuzzy bit too, and I've probably even done it, but lately I've seen too many revision projects where I am doing major edits on some fool's 100% matches. Translate to fuzzy will just get me in trouble in those cases. I'm sooooo glad I don't have to deal with issues like that in a DV project.

  4. When I saw this title I thought "Freelance 7.0" was the sort of answer you were looking for...

    One of the few uses I still have for pens is jotting down the last page number on a scrap of paper.

  5. @Rod: You have pens that actually write on your desk? Lucky man. I've tried that, but when I go to sign a bill or scribble a note, they run dry of course. I should probably stick to crayon.

    Actually, from the perspective of your original understanding of the title, the proper answer is "Freelance 6.5". The point where Word files met TagEditor was like the opening of Pandora's Box.


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