Creating Translation-Oriented Documents

Creating Translation-Oriented Documents

   

Here are some tips for preparing source documents optimally for translation even during their initial creation. A well-prepared and cleanly-formatted source document can save a lot of time and money during translation with a translation memory system (TM system) since the recognition capabilities of the TM system only make sense if the segments to be translated are actually identical or similar.

To improve the layout and the readability of the text, the author inserts a manual page break at a specific location. However, during translation texts usually grow or shrink in length depending on the language combination.

Kristina Stone, Across.net Translating Specialist

Whenever possible, avoid using PDF files as the source document format for translation. Always try to provide the original file format that served as the basis for the creation of the PDF files since PDF files cannot currently be edited in Across; instead, they have to be transformed into another format (usually Word) before translation. The transformed documents must generally be edited again before translation since the converted text usually contains too many formatting errors to be able to translate it sensibly with a TM system. This editing is always associated with additional time and costs and delays the start of the translation.

Very often manual page breaks are inserted for formatting purposes, e.g. because a headline falls at the bottom of a page. To improve the layout and the readability of the text, the author inserts a manual page break at a specific location. However, during translation texts usually grow or shrink in length depending on the language combination, so it is very unlikely that the manual page breaks from the source text should be placed in the same location as in the target text. Usually the manual page breaks are not “translated” but are skipped during translation and they are inserted into the final version of the text after the translation is finished and the text is converted back into its original document format.

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