Monday, September 12, 2005

Shortcut forgotten

Today's movie demonstrates how the memory based translation is done in AppleTrans. You may find a different approach than what you get used to in the other tools. It also shows briefly how the "Auto translation" option of the Translation tool works.

In this demo, I used a keyboard shortcut (Control - D) in the corpus view quite often. This shortcut is not explained clearly in the manual, but it is very important item to remember. Mastering this shortcut makes your process much faster.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

FYI - here is a copy of an update I have sent to the MacLingua translators e-mail list.

Keep up the good work! As you will read below, I am imprerssed and pelased so far :-)

I promised to keep various people updated with progress on AppleTrans but have been far too busy actually translating with it to right long eulogies or criticisms.

Having now used the tool for projects of various sizes - from tiny jobs to thousands of words - and for projects involving multiple files as well as single files, I have to say that my initial impressions have only been reinforced.

AppleTrans is fast - light years ahead of WordFast for example and easily as fast as Deja Vu on the dark side. Access to multiple TMs (corpora) and Terminology/Glossaries really is instant. It is also extremely accurate - I have yet to suffer the sort of problems often encountered with WordFast forMAC, where you know the phrase, sentence or word is in there somewhere but it doesn't show up.

In particular, I am increasingly stunned by the speed of the CONCORDANCE searching, no matter how many TMs I have open and how big they are. Occasionally, the number of hits is overwhelmingly large (again hardly the fault of the developer) and literally goes off the edge of the screen, but it is INSTANTANEOUS! Again, without wishing to criticise the excellent WrodFast and its wonderful developer, the restrictions imposed by Microsoft in VBA mean that concordance searching in WF was always slow at best - often excruciatingly so. It is a whole different universe in AT.

The manual is not very clear for 'switchers' used to other TM programmes. Once you get used to a different way of working though and find things out by trial and error, it is actually quite useful for a second look. In particular it is worth recapping to work out all the KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS - without them AT is very mouse-dependent, which not everybody likes. The shortcuts also speed up an already fast process, which was a nice unexpected bonus.

I have also now had the opportunity to try AT out on a pretty heavily formatted file. Unfortunately, when I saved the Word file as .rtf, it failed to include the footnotes, which was a hassle but not exactly the AT developer's fault. The formatting did get messed about quite a bit and I had to 'resurrect' it in Word afterwards. However, compared with some of the extremely slow segmenting I have suffered in heavily formatted Word files in WordFast (not to mention all the hassles using its Terminology functions), I still found the whole process relatively fast. It is just a different way of working.

Last week, I tried out the Sharing Corpora (TMs) over my Airport Wireless Network. Two of us worked on different translations but accessing the same TMs and terminology. Neither of us noticed any perceptible loss of speed. I believe it is also possible to share over the Internet but I have not tried it yet.

Due to the amount of actual translating I have been doing recently, I have not had a great deal of time to contact the developer. However, each time I have posted on his blog or e-mail list responses to my questions and solutions to my problems have been rapid and useful. Check out the Blog at - the e-mail list is at

Needless to say, I have a few suggestions for improvements (see below) but I would recommend AT for general translating unless your work is extremely heavily formatted, has to be returned in proprietary TM formats or you are of an "ain't-broke-so-won't-fix-it" mindset :-)

Suggestions for improvements would include:

ICONS - they are a useful way of showing new users of applications how to do things.

More KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS - unless they are there already and I have just missed them, it would be good to have keyboard shortcuts for
1) switching from TM to Glossary to Text windows
2) for looking up, pasting from and adding to Glossaries
3) for concordance searching

A "Switchers Manual" to ease the learning curve for those used to other TM systems.

A section in the Manual about WORKFLOWS. I am pleased with the speed of the programme and the progress I have made in learning it but it would be good to see how others use it, so I can see whether I am getting the most out of it.

More FILTERS - for other file formats - e.g. Word, and a more intuitive filter for TRADOS files.

More visible STATS - I like to know how far through a file I am while I work on it.

Slàn leibh uile! Tam

9:31 PM  
Blogger hiruneko said...

Thanks for your report, Tam. I have certainly noted your suggestions.

12:58 AM  

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