Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Translation tools


Poedit is cross-platform gettext catalogs (.po files) editor. It is built with wxWidgets toolkit and can run on any platform supported by it (although it was only tested on Unix with GTK+ and Windows). It aims to provide more convenient approach to editing catalogs than launching vi and editing the file by hand. Poedit is free and you can view screenshots for the various supported platforms as well as download a copy on their website.

Microsoft Translation Style Guides

The Microsoft Translation Style Guides lay down the rules that should be used when translating Microsoft products. However, they offer sound advice that can be applied to any other translation.


PASSOLO is one of the smallest professional software localization tools but it offers great functionality. Check out the new features in the latest version.


WebBudget locates, classifies and counts all translatable text in an HTML file, including all ALT, BUTTON, META, JAVA, and MSGBOX labels. It also counts entire projects (folders + subfolders), from disk or online.


ALCHEMY CATALYST originally by was developed Corel to provide a solution to problems and bottlenecks caused by a fragmented localization process. The tool provides a single, interactive environment that allows translators, engineers, and project managers to manage and track multi-faceted localization projects.

WorldLingo free online MT

WorldLingo's webservice can translate emails, websites and text


Systran is one of the most widely used machine translation tools. Several TM tools has support for Systran.


MemoQ is an advanced localization workspace. Please read on to learn about the basics of localization workspaces.
During localization you transform documents available in one language into documents available in another language, taking into account the cultural specificities of the target culture. These documents usually bear some resemblance to each other; if you are a manufacturer or a service provider, most of your key documents are related to your fields of activity. If you are a translating professional, you get similar documents from your customer or you get multiple documents about the same topic, e.g. legislation-related matters or user manuals. The localization workspace takes advantage of these similarities.


The Across Personal Edition is the standalone application developed by Across and offers full translation functionality, particularly for freelance translators. The application assists you in re-using contents, controlling processes, and ensuring a high quality level. Thus, it speeds up the delivery of high-quality foreign-language contents to your customers and significantly reduces your own translation workload.

You can download a free copy for freelance translators from Across Systems’ website.


MetaTexis a nice TM that runs in Microsoft Word, it is very competitively priced and has a lot of interesting functionality and is a well constructed tool. Another thing that should make people like MetaTexis is that it can easily replace Trados, it supports read import/export all Trados formats. Give MetaTexis a try, the price wont kill you and you will not regret it.
According to Hermann Bruns, MetaTexis Developer, CAT-Tool manufacturers usually try to target large companies ignoring the costs for translators.

TM Conversion

TM Conversion from the Department for Computational Linguistics at Cotman University. They offer to convert Wordfast TM to Trados TM format as well as CVS, but also glossaries in CSV format can be formatted to Trados TM, WordFast TM or TMX format. This service can speed up translation and ensuring direct implementation of the glossary terminology in the translations. Check it out...

Star Transit

Star Transit is one of those tools that just does what is supposed to without fancy talk and flashing lights. It is a very good Translation Memory Tool, so have a look at their new power-packed version. You can download the Star Transit PE Satelitte version along with a tutorial.


WordFast is the of the least expensive TM tools available, it is basically a TRADOS clone but it does it's job better than TRADOS and can even fix files TRADOS has corrupted. We have tested WordFast under Windows, OS X and Macintosh (classic and OS X, see picture below for classic) and it performs well and we have nothing but good things to say about this TM progam.


SDLX is a translation tool with translation memory (like) functionality and a user-friendly interface. SDLx has been a rough ride in the past but I must admit that it is now both stable and pleasant to work with. SDLx is slightly better that common solutions like Trados TagEditor because you see the full sentence and not an insane segmentation of short sencences over several tokens/TUs caused by the formatting of the text. You can download a free version of SDLx lite from their website.


To be blunt avoid T-stream, it is written in Java and therefore it runs pretty sluggish by default and this is especially true for large projects. I know at least one translator who did not get paid for her work because this tool prevented her from working at the normal speed. On top of that, this "fantastic" tool has the most non-sensical Translation Quality Checking tool I have ever come across. It attempts to check if your work is in compliance with the approved glossary/terminology, but at the same time it is too inept to take the differences between singular and plural into consideration. The result is an "error" report a mile long with no real content - A REAL TIME-WASTER. Also, the TM functionality if we can call it so, is so inconsistent that you cannot rely on it to recognize even 100% matches. I am simply not impressed...


Fusion I have not tested yet but it look promising except from the fact that it is limited to languages using the latin alphabet.


DejaVu is a Spanish developed Translation Memory Tool. With this tool in your toolbox you will be able to handle the most common file formats as well as other TM formats. Not only can it work with Trados' file format, but is also superior when it comes to stability and features that give you a head start. DejaVu can assemble translations from the lexicon, terminology database and previously entered entries in the TM.
While some TM tools might be fine translation tools - DejaVu is Simply Excellent


TRADOS when someone mention the word Translation Memory, most people think of TRADOS. Even if they don't really know what it is. Lately TRADOS have developed quite a few new filters and free tools and the company has been taken over by SDL.


OmegaT is a free translation memory tool written in Java so it runs on Windows, Linux and Mac platforms. If the project is handled by a capable project manager translators can use this tool without any problems. However, in the real world you might have to solve the issues yourself. Nevertheless, it is a good program that does what it is supposed do very nicely. Now since my first use of OmegaT it has changed and improved a lot and it is now possible to choose between paragraph or sentence segmentation. Earlier versions suffered from by only offering paragraph segmentation. I think you should try OmegaT...

Project ]Open[

Project Open is a project management tool that offers a module translation project management. It is integrated with trados and uses word count information to calculate the workload of the individual translators.

1. Presales, price negotiations and reception of files
2. Project Setup and PM assignment
3. Anlysis of the project files using Trados
4. Project staffing and freelance invitation
5. The freelancers confirm their availability
6. The resource manager selects freelancers
7. Translation Workflow: Translators and editors download their files and upload results.
8. Project discussions, "queries" and incident resolution
9. The customer downloads the result files
10. Invoice generation and payment tracking

All-in-all a very comprehensive project management package. Check it out!

FineCount Freeware

An essential software package for translators and translation managers - providing a wide range of features and functionality needed for document analysis. FineCount can quickly provide detailed statistics for documents in many different formats (Microsoft Word, PDF, HTML, and many others) FineCount can also be used to prepare cost estimates and invoices for translation work. Moreover, FineCount allows the users to create their own report templates that can be reused with different documents. Here are some screenshots showing FineCount.

LTC Organiser

The LTC Organiser is a unique and innovative business process management and workflow control software system, which supports and facilitates multilingual projects. It was developed according to the requirements of The Language Technology Centre's comprehensive multilingual activities, and reflects years of experience in managing interpreting, language training, large scale multilingual translation and software localisation projects. This software is therefore of considerable use to Language Industry worldwide. It ensures transparency in organisations of any size and reduces management time and costs by up to 50%

Sun (localization)

Nice reference site with both glossaries, style guides and a wealth of other information. Sun did a good job putting this site together.

Machine Translation: An Introductory Guide

Machine Translation: An Introductory Guide is a good description of what to look for and what to take into consideration when using or think to apply MT.

ISO 639 Language Codes

A full list of ISO 639 Language Codes Source: www.lingualizer.net