MULTILINGUAL DESKTOP PUBLISHING, TYPESETTING, GRAPHIC DESIGN & OTHER SERVICES

 
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Our Services

We routinely deliver the following services:

Read on for details...

Multilingual DTP & Typesetting

  • Our skills
    • Languages: We can now handle DTP and typesetting jobs in any & all languages of the world.
       
    • Software: We have all major DTP software packages used in the printing and graphic design industry (including some special foreign versions of InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.) and we know how to use them.
       
    • Compatibility: We regularly work in both the Apple Mac and the Windows (PC) environments, so we can navigate easily from one platform to the other and resolve any compatibility issue. We have also recently started to experiment with Linux-based operating systems, such as Ubuntu, and we are open to consider working on DTP applications running on these platforms.
       
    • Experience: We have accumulated many years of experience in producing foreign versions of product catalogues, technical manuals, marketing brochures, etc. in multiple languages, and we have many tricks up our sleeves to handle the occasional problem or unexpected situation.
       
    • Typography (fonts): We have a large collection of special fonts and foreign language fonts, and we can even create fonts or add a few special characters to an existing font for a particular project, or convert Mac fonts to Windows or vice versa, etc., so we can always replace missing fonts with similar-looking ones if needed.
       
  • Typical production
    • Extracting text for translation and preparing files for translators: (see section "Localisation Engineering..." below).
    • Technical documentation: We regularly produce translated versions of medium and large technical manuals or user guides in English, French and other languages, which typically include technical diagrams containing text that needs replacement, screen images that need to be recaptured, logos and other items that need to be amended. This type of work is usually done in InDesign or FrameMaker, sometimes in Quark XPress or Microsoft Word, and usually involves images to be processed in Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop and a translation workflow based on the use of SDL Trados Studio or another compatible Computer-Assisted Translation software.
       
    • Product catalogues: We often produce foreign versions of product catalogues with hundreds of photos and a multitude of small text blocks in InDesign or occasionally in Quark XPress.
       
    • Corporate and marketing brochures: We regularly produce foreign versions of such brochures, often in Arabic or Chinese, or European languages.
       
    • Food packaging, posters, labels, logos, etc.: We routinely produce foreign versions of such items, carefully meeting the specifications and matching the spirit of the original composition in the target language.
       
    • Flash animations: We also produce foreign language versions of Flash animations for websites and multimedia educational materials.

Graphic Design

  • Newsletters: We routinely design monthly newsletters for some of our clients, turning their raw text and selected photos into fully laid out newsletters, while conforming to a predefined visual identity or other design guidelines. Then, we often produce a few foreign versions of these newsletters, after the text has been translated by our client or some external translators.
     
  • Administrative reports: We are often ordered to produce large reports including many tables, charts and graphics, in InDesign or occasionally in Microsoft Word or Open Office, using raw text and Excel charts from the client.

Localisation Engineering & Special Services for Translation Agencies

  • Extracting text for translation and preparing files for translators

    Translation agencies are often requested to translate materials sent to them in file formats that translators cannot readily process. Sometimes, converting a PDF file into a Microsoft Word file is all it takes, but quite often, the result is not ideal, or leads to other problems later on. Or the client may have specifically requested that the translation be input in the original artwork files and will not accept a translation provided separately in Microsoft Word.

    Translator seldom have the DTP software applications required to open the original artwork files (InDesign, Quark XPress, FrameMaker, Illustrator, Photoshop, Visio, etc.) (and even if they did, they may not be able or willing to do a proper DTP job for a competitive price within a short turnaround time). Basically, they usually need to work in a software environment that they are familiar with, and in which they can access all their translation tools easily, rather than in a DTP application not particularly well suited to translation work: in short, they prefer to work either in Microsoft Word, or in a CAT (Computer-Aided Translation) application such as Trados Studio, MemoQ, Wordfast Pro, Déjà Vu, etc.

    This means that the source-language text usually needs to be extracted from the original artwork files before translators can work efficiently. Then, once translation is complete, the translated (target-language) text needs to be transferred back into the artwork files, in replacement of the original source text, and readjusted to fit.

    It is important to know that in the last few years, a number of software solutions have been created to avoid the tedious copy-pasting (or "flowing") of many pages of translated text into artwork files, which used to be an inevitable part of the traditional DTP workflow. The improved workflow consists in extracting the text for translation automatically using special software so as to produced tagged work files, i.e. basically text files containing page formatting data that allow the software to recognise where each piece of translation should go on each page, so that the translation can later be automatically imported into the artwork files without much manual labour. This can be a great time-saver, as the only DTP labour remaining thereafter is the adjustment of target-language text to fit the available space on each page, and the processing of illustrations containing text (which can rarely be processed automatically). Such tagged work files can be translated either in Microsoft Word or in a CAT (Computer-Aided Translation) application (such as Trados Studio) if the translator has one.

    Not only does this workflow save a lot of work at DTP stage, but it also prevents errors and shortens turnaround times. Incidentally, it also allows for more accurate word counts and better "fuzzy match" discounts (i.e. better leveraging of similitudes and repetitions of existing translations) if the translator is using a CAT tool.

    We have extensive experience in this field, so we can quickly and confidently prepare tagged work files for translators in any language who use Microsoft Word or a Computer-Aided Translation software such as Trados Studio, MemoQ, Wordfast Pro, Déjà Vu, etc., from artwork files in various formats such as InDesign, Quark XPress, FrameMaker, Photoshop, Microsoft Visio, etc.

  • Arranging cost-effective solutions to handle file format compatibility issues or foreign characters font issues.

    We commonly find that some clients operate on outdated technological solutions, often suggested or imposed years ago by their commercial printers, and are unaware that more modern and more cost-effective approaches are available today to handle the original technical issues.

    For example, some clients insist that Arabic or Chinese text should always be delivered in vector-outlined EPS files — not knowing precisely why, and generally assuming that it simply must be so — when there are nowadays cheaper and faster ways to handle problems formerly associated with these languages and fonts. In fact, while such clients are usually afraid that their printer might object to new solutions or new file formats, printers are usually quite happy with these solutions.
  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR): We can convert printed text or “scanned” PDFs (i.e. PDF in which the text can't be selected) into editable text in Microsoft Word, in many languages.
  • Counting words or characters in special file formats including "protected" PDF files, Quark XPress files, InDesign files, HTML files, etc., and even from printed paper documents after OCR. We know how to produce reliable word counts that can be used as a basis for translation quotations.
  • Expert knowledge of Microsoft Word: We know all of the advanced features of Word, including automatic indexes, cross-references, watermarks and background graphics, text boxes, macros, special functions only available for some less common languages (such as complex script options only available for Arabic or some Asian languages), issues with files converted from PDFs and text boxes, counting words within text boxes, etc. We have years of experience in handling large and complex Word files, and we can suggest cost-effective and reliable approaches to complex word processing projects.
     

Any question? Call us or send us a message now (see our Contact Us page for details).

 

 
   
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