Trados Studio Workshop in San Francisco

I will be teaching an intermediate level Trados Studio workshop in San Francisco on September 20th. The main topics covered are translation memory and file management, Studio verification tools, and the use of the SDL OpenExchange applications. The number of OpenExchange apps keeps growing and it’s getting more and more difficult to stay up-to-date with all the new functions and features available through these apps. One of the main goals of this workshop is to help you to find those Studio apps that are the most useful for you and get them (and you) organized so that you can actually use them in your daily work.

In addition, several “performance-enhancing” Studio tips and tricks will be shown. Participants are also encouraged to submit in advance their own questions and requests for additional topics.

For registration and additional info, see the NCTA website. If you have any questions about the content of the workshop, feel free to contact me directly.

OpenExchange Apps for TM Management

I organized all my OpenExchange apps (and some other utilities) neatly the other day in the Welcome view of Studio using the Menu Maker app (see Figure 1 below). While doing so, I realized that I don’t actually remember what some of them do, so I thought I would organize them in my mind as well (which is a much more difficult task). Anyhow, I collected all the TM management-related apps into a table and drew a diagram that would show me at a glance what they do and how they are related to each other. I found that very helpful for myself so I thought to share it here as well…

Figure 1. SDL OpenExchange apps and other programs organized in the Welcome screen of Trados Studio 2014 using the Menu Maker app.

TM app graph

Figure 2. TM management-related apps and their main conversion functions. For details, see the table below.

Here are some additional details about the apps mentioned in the above diagram:

App name Conversion function Notes
SDL Translation Memory Management Utility SDLTM > TMW
  • Reverses language pairsRemoves duplicates
SDLTmConvert SDLTM > SDXLIFF / XML / TMX / CSV / monolingual source and target text files
  • Includes filtering options
  • Allows splitting output into several files
  • Allows hiding and setting  user and system info
  • Allows manipulation of tagged content
  • Free limited version, unlimited paid version (35 euros)
SDLXliff2Tmx SDLXLIFF > TMX / tab delimited TXT
  • Includes filtering options
  • Allows removal of formatting tags
SDLTmReverseLangs SDLTM <> SDLTM
  • Reverses languages
TM Merge Merges SDLTMs into one SDLTM
  • Also creates additional language pairs from the available languages in the input TMs
  • Cost: 48 euros

In addition to the TM conversion apps listed above, there are also several other TM management-related apps. I couldn’t come up with a pretty diagram for them, so I just list them here (all are free unless otherwise indicated):

TM Optimizer Optimizes Trados Workbench TMs for use with Trados Studio by removing excessive formatting tags from the TM thus increasing the TM leverage. Cost: £50-100.
SDLTmFindVars Identifies potential variables (untranslated text) in translation memories and allows the user to add them as variables to a Studio TM.
SDLTM Repair Fixes specific errors in damaged Studio TMs.
Variables Manager for SDL Trados Studio Allows fast editing, copying, importing and exporting variable lists in Studio TMs.
TMX Anonymizer Anonymizes TMX files by resetting the Creation User and Change User name fields.

These tables and graphs help me to keep track of the various apps and their functions. It’s good to know what kind of apps are available because you never know when you might need them.

Trados Studio 2014 – What to Expect?

The Ribbon, yes – that’s certainly the first thing all current Studio users notice, and I’m sure it’s not necessarily love at first sight for everyone. How many of us were (un)happy about the ribbon in MS Office 2007? However, it’s pretty safe to say that most of us prefer it now over the old menu structure. While the ribbon in Studio might irritate some current users for a while, it is particularly helpful for new users and others who are not aware of all the settings hidden in the old menu structure. The ribbon makes finding all these settings much easier. Take for example the editor font size. I’ve met many users who were unaware that you can change the font size. In order to do that in Studio 2011, you had to go to Tools > Options > Editor > Translation Results Window > Font Size. However, in Studio 2014 it’s easily visible and accessible directly in the View ribbon (Font Adaptation is the last group there) and you can see the effect immediately. And as far as the Options dialog box goes, it is now accessed via the File menu (or Alt+F+T) since there’s no Tools menu any more.

Unfortunately, you can’t customize the quick access toolbar yet and it has only a few functions available at this point. Hopefully, that will be possible with the next release because that’s one of the key benefits of the ribbon design.

I have been using the beta and release versions of Studio 2014 for about two months now. The ribbon hasn’t made a huge difference to me apart from having to relearn the location of some functions but I still think it’s a very useful improvement. However, the improvements and new features that I have found to be the most important and useful to me personally are the following:

  • much more accurate Concordance search results
  • new TM fields and field values are immediately available
  • QuickMerge (you can merge files easily any way you want during the project which simplifies the translation and QA process when translating a project with several files)
  • improved display filter (incl. additional filter criteria for repetitions)
  • autosave
  • speed improvements (though adding the first new term is always slow)
  • easier access to the various help resources (this is really good for new users)

In addition, there are several new OpenExchange apps, such as SDLXLIFF Toolkit, SDLXLIFFit!, Variables Manager, SDL Legit! and File type definition for memoQ XLIFF. However, probably the most useful is Menu maker for SDL Trados Studio 2014 – it allows you to organize and display all of your OpenExchange apps on the Welcome screen so that they are easily accessible from within Studio. I’ve always had a hard time remembering which apps I’ve already installed and how to access them. Now that problem is solved. For more information on setting up Menu maker, see this blog article by Emma Goldsmith (and while there, see also her other very informative articles about the new Studio features).

Trados Studio Workshops and Presentations

Oakland (California): I will be teaching a beginner level and an intermediate level Trados Studio 2011/2014 workshop at the CFI (California Federation of Interpreters) Conference in Oakland (CA) on October 13th. For details, see

San Antonio (Texas): I will also be giving two Trados Studio related presentations at the ATA Annual Conference in San Antonio on Friday November 8th: (LT-5) Dealing with Tags and (LT-7) Six Things to Make You a Better Trados Studio User. I’m hoping to see many of you at the conference!