Monday, July 05, 2021

Guest Post: The Studio Academy - Mastering File Types in Trados Studio

by Michael Widemann

Even though I have been using Trados products for nearly 20 years now, I only started digging deeper with the release of Studio in 2009. And this for a good reason.

As a project manager responsible for delivering multilingual translation projects to my clients, I am confronted with ever more different file formats, many of which are specific to only one client. This is especially true for XML. But there is so much more: Different versions of Microsoft Office documents, FrameMaker, InDesign, csv and text files, JSON or YAML. Every file type is based on a completely different concept and each new version comes with new features that make established processes redundant.

What I needed was a completely different approach to how I use Studio. The defaults were not good enough anymore.

Then, in 2009, I also started working as a Trados trainer where I had the chance to work with freelance translators, project managers at agencies and localization specialist in small and large companies all over the world. And what I soon began to realize is that – even though everybody has their own workflows – most of them work with Studio’s default settings. They install it and go for it.

And it works. Even if you have never worked with such a tool, the fundamental concepts are easy to understand: translation memory, concordance, terminology integration. Saves time and money. Great. Plus 51 file types right out of the box. Studio handles them all.

After all, this is Studio’s concept: Whether you know how InDesign works, what an XML file is made up of or have mastered the intricacies of JSON files – Studio makes it possible for you translate them. No questions asked. No job you need to turn down because you do not have the required software. Studio – even in its standard installation – extracts the text it deems translation-worthy and presents it to you in a uniform working environment.

Yet there seems to be a problem...

All these options might be overwhelming. How can you possibly decide on whether to extract content from Master Pages in InDesign documents, decide on the right Parser settings or if it is necessary to insert a UTF-8-BOM, for example, when you have no idea what this is all about? And what's the deal with regular expressions and segmentation rules?

This is the problem I aim to solve with “The Studio Academy”: The complete guide to mastering file types in SDL Trados Studio:

- Detailed explanations on all available file type options, based on real-world examples.

- Everything you need to know about the concept behind file types in order to make the right decisions.

- Bonus information on embedded content, regular expressions, segmentation rules, XPath, ....

These modules are for you if...

- You don’t want a piece of software to make decisions for you. You want to be in control.

- You want to customize Studio to extract only the text you actually need. Not more, and certainly not less.

- You want to create your own file types to have the best solution for unknown file formats.

- You want to be able to handle files that do not follow any standard (e.g., HTML files copied to Excel) by using embedded content, regular expressions and customized segmentation rules like a pro.

Where and when to customize file type settings

About the author:

Michael Widemann is a project manager at a translation agency and an approved Trados trainer with 20 years’ experience in the industry. He also works as a translator and has published several books, mainly about music, some of them with Cosoc Grand Palace Publishing (his own publishing company). He is responsible for the German version of the Xbench manual, loves finding new ways to improve his workflow and hosts the podcast “Keine Zeit”, a weekly talk show about productivity, communication, motivation, goals, life and whatever else can go wrong.

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