A warm welcome to this relaunched NativeChecker site. As each year comes to a close, most people inevitably reflect on the 12 months having passed, the good, bad (and the ugly) and how to make the following year more successful from a personal and professional perspective. “Onwards and upwards” is a popular refrain.
After enduring a very challenging 2014, I would like to echo those sentiments – even in the middle of 2015 – and put them into action with my new online home.
My all-time favourite saying, courtesy of Helen Keller, is supremely relevant here:
“No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.”
As an optimist, I look around and enjoy my life and what I have, especially in the professional sphere. At the same time, I am clearly aware of the need to focus on and improve areas where I have less “natural talent.” But do we keep toiling away at them, despite everything, or turn to other professionals or software for help?
My talent for words, for example, is sadly not matched by a similar gift for numbers or art. I enjoy using and mastering MS Word but merely “tolerate” Excel and Photoshop.
For this reason I tend to outsource administrative and graphic design work to allow me to focus on what I do best, or use software to facilitate tasks such as invoicing, counting characters, converting formats and so on.
Think of them as my ‘imaginary friends’! Let me introduce three of the best I have come across in recent years:
- – Practicount –while no word counting software is perfect, this product has paid for itself many times over, in terms of quickly and simply automating a thankless task and covering many formats.
- – BCL easyConverter –PDFs were designed to remain in a non-editable format but that doesn’t stop clients wanting them translated and with the same look and feel. If the original PDF is convertible, this is likely to give you the best results in Word.
- – ABBYY FineReader – Award-winning OCR software and it shows. When the original JPG or PDF is scanned but a Word end document is needed – this product will produce results from passable to pristine better than almost any other.
As a translator with almost 20 years’ experience, I also see the value in Translation Memory software. My own clear conclusion, after sampling a range of available packages, is that I find MemoQ the most effective and intuitive solution.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this little tour of my group of trusted friends! And why not introduce yours? Here’s to a successful rest of year!
Here’s to a positive 2015!