Package Insert 36
Interesting facts and figures for customers and partners of mt-g.
February 2016
Successful planning of DTP services
mt-g offers its customers more than translations. Many companies require documents in a variety of languages and specific layouts. They might be instructions for use, product catalogues, information brochures, flyers or posters, for example. mt-g can draw on over 15 years of experience in the fields of both medical translations and layout services and is able to offer its customers a full-service package under one roof. Find out below what information mt-g requires from you in order to be able to implement your DTP project in the best way possible.

General information about the translation

The source documents are initially translated before foreign-language desktop publishing (DTP) occurs. This requires all the basic information for a translation project:
  • Source and target language(s) with any sublanguage(s)
  • Volume for translation (including graphics, if applicable)
  • Format of the original documents
  • Specific field of expertise
  • Purpose of the translation (in-house use or publication)
  • Translation target group (experts, lay people, children, patients, etc.)
  • Review desired/not desired
  • Preferred CAT system and, if applicable, any terminology/translation memories or other guidelines/reference materials available for the translation

Specific information for layout services
To be able to create the desired layout for the best possible results post-translation, the mt-g project manager will need further information. This relates firstly to the project deadlines and their coordination, and secondly to all details of the delivery formats of the translation and the version put into the proper layout.
  • What is the desired translation deadline?
  • When is the layout version needed?
  • Are the final original files, including images, screen captures and, if applicable, localised screen captures of the target languages available?
  • Are print-ready documents desired? In what print format?
  • What is the final deadline for the printed documents? What printing process is planned?
  • Are updates to these documents planned in the long term?
  • Can the font size, font width or character spacing be reduced within reason and/or graphics moved around during the foreign-language DTP process? Do images and/or screen captures need to be revised or substituted?
  • Do the original files contain directories or indices?
  • What fonts should be used for the layout?
  • Does the customer hold the font licences?
  • In what format should mt-g deliver the translation?
  • What is the desired format of the layout version?
  • Who will be checking the layout?
  • Who is the customer’s contact person who will be approving the printing?

The formats which mt-g offers as a matter of course include InDesign, FrameMaker, PageMaker, Illustrator, QuickSilver and QuarkXPress. The project manager should also be informed which version of the relevant program was used to produce the original documents and what the underlying operating system is (Windows or iOS). Please talk to our project managers if a different format is desired.

In addition, clients should also tell us whether and to what extent the layout of the foreign-language documents may differ from the original. Different languages have different run lengths, which means that translation text lengths can vary greatly. If, for example, a German text is translated into English, the translation will be about 5% shorter than the original. By contrast, if the same text is translated into Greek, the translation will be about 40% longer. This will, of course, be noticeable in the layout and needs to be taken into consideration in the planning of DTP projects.

Changes to the run lengths of translations from English
Information for a successful project outcome
All those involved – customers, project managers, translators, reviewers and graphic designers – share a common goal of the most successful outcome possible to a DTP project. To achieve this, it is relevant for mt-g to know what will happen at the client's after the project.
  • Will the translations be checked by the client?
  • When will the client's corrections be made?
  • Will mt-g be notified of the corrections?
  • Are reviews by in-country representatives planned?
  • What formats do the in-country representatives require?
  • When and in what form do in-country reviews take place?
  • Will in-country corrections be passed on to mt-g?
  • Do corrections by in-country representatives need to be reviewed by mt-g's medical translators?

It is particularly important for our project managers to know what will be happening at your company following the translation and the DTP process if your layout documents are intended for publication. Generally speaking, documents for publication should undergo a further content and format check. If these checks are carried out by you in-house, we can provide an additional service involving the making of the necessary linguistic corrections to your translation memory allowing these to be incorporated into subsequent projects.
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