2011-12-27

Best practice interoperability for outsourcers with memoQ

Given the growing popularity of Kilgray's memoQ as a staging platform for translation management in projects involving end customers and translators working with a variety of tools, it is increasingly important for translators using other tools to understand the best types of memoQ "bilingual" files to work with for their tools and the best procedures to apply. Here is a summary with links and advice relevant to various common tools and the reasons to adopt a particular approach where possible:
  • Trados Workbench macros in Microsoft Word - While the bilingual DOC format of memoQ seems natural for this tool, it is often a very bad idea. Experience has shown that these are very prone to "break" when segmentation is changed or the content is copied into another file which does not contain the properties information needed for memoQ to recognize and re-import the bilingual DOC, updating the file to translate. Thus it is recommended to use the bilingual RTF tables, preferably with the mqInternal style set for the tags when the RTF file is generated in memoQ. The color difference makes it easier to check the tags when proofreading. The file should be cleaned before returning it to the outsourcer, so the target column contains only the translation.
  • Trados TagEditor - The cleanest, most robust method involves using the source cells from a memoQ bilingual RTF file created with the mqInternal style specified for the tags. This source content is copied into a DOC or DOCX file, the dark red tag text hidden, and the prepared file is then translated in TagEditor. When the cleaned target file is saved, its content is pasted into the target column of the original memoQ bilingual RTF. If a comments column is provided in the RTF file, notes about terms to check or other matters can be added, and these will be available to the outsourcer after re-importing the bilingual file to memoQ. The procedure is described in detail in the lower part of the article here.
  • SDL Trados Studio (2009 & 2011) - Because using the memoQ RTF tables enables certain formatting, such as bold, italic or underlined text, to be seen in SDL Trados Studio, this is recommended over the use of XLIFF files for exchange. This also avoids the current bug in SDL Trados Studio which makes it difficult to import XLIFF files if the sublanguages are not specified. A robust procedure offering tag protection is described here.
  • WordFast Pro - The procedure to work with memoQ content and protect the tags is essentially the same as the recommendation for TagEditor, except that WordFast Pro can work directly with RTF files, so it is not necessary to move the content to a Microsoft Word file. The method is described here.
  • Wordfast Classic -While the bilingual DOC format of memoQ is "inviting" for this tool just like with the Trados TWB macros in Microsoft Word, experience has shown that translators are very prone to "break" the DOC files by changing segmentation or copying the content into another file which does not contain the properties information needed for memoQ to recognize and re-import the bilingual DOC, updating the file to translate. Thus, as with the Trados Workbench approach, it is recommended to use the bilingual RTF tables, preferably with the mqInternal style set for the tags when the RTF file is generated in memoQ. The color difference makes it easier to check the tags when proofreading. The file should be cleaned before returning it to the outsourcer, so the target column contains only the translation.
  • OmegaT - Although OmegaT handles XLIFF nicely in general, there are possibly problems with the current build of memoQ. Here there is a recommended procedure for working with the bilingual RTF tables by copying the source content into an ODT (Open Office) or DOCX file; after translation, the cells are copied into the target column of the bilingual RTF and any comments necessary are added (if the column for them is provided). The article also contains tips on the terminology data format for OmegaT to facilitate the export of terminology from memoQ.
This article will be updated as other workflows are tested and verified or as other methods are developed which offer better working conditions or better results.

No comments:

Post a Comment