Due to a series of fortunate events, I started cooperating with the Localazy team. And now, from the perspective of a translator, localization specialist, and software trainer, I will try to show you - fellow translators - the features of and philosophies behind Localazy software.
We will start with the basic introduction to the user interface and features for translators working in Localazy.
🎈 Introduction 🔗
Specialized software for translators - and Localazy is specialized, as it has been created with translating user interfaces of applications in mind - can be a pain to use. The main reason is usually the interface filled with dozens of unintuitive options and features that work in obscure ways. Yes, Passollo, I am looking at you now. 🙄
On the other hand, there are some well-designed specialized applications that perfectly serve their purpose; here, Xbench.net comes to mind. 😉 The most prominent players in the CAT tool market, such as Trados or memoQ, are great all-purpose tools. Still, they will never be suitable specialized applications for translating movie subtitles or performing such advanced QA checks as QA Distiller.
There is still a lot of opportunities in the translation industry for other developers to provide specialized translation software, and Localazy will take over a part of them, in my opinion.
🚩 What is Localazy? 🔗
One of its most significant advantages is simplicity. Like most online CAT tools - you just set up a simple translator profile and log in to the system. The project, fully prepared by the client, waits there to be taken care of.
With Localazy you do not need to:
- create translation memories,
- configure matching penalties,
- import DTD.
These tasks are already done by the client and Localazy before you come in and start translating. You might know this scenario - it has a lot of advantages (you don’t worry about any technical issues) and a lot of disadvantages (you have almost no options to fix, tweak, add any translation resources), but in most cases, this is comfortable for the translator, as you save a lot of time.
🧭 Basic navigation 🔗
Now, let’s see what Localazy presents when you log in to the system.
I actively take part in 3 projects. And to start working, you just click on the project name and select your target language on the next screen. You can start typing it in the search languages field (1), just as I did it in this screenshot, and then hit the ideogram icon (2).
Below, there are the two UI sections of Localazy you will spend the most time in - the list of phrases (Localazy calls strings “phrases”) and translation editor.
The list of phrases contains the usual two columns of source and target segments (1), as well as some context provided by the client in the Key column (2). You can filter the columns with some filtering options, but now this feature only supports alphanumeric characters and not regular expressions. Dropdown menu (4) allows filtering of the phrases by their statuses, which are pretty self-explanatory and useful. On the bottom, there is another dropdown to change the number of phrases (10-100) displayed.
Nothing fancy here, but this makes the screen easy to read and uncluttered - this is crucial, as you can:
- start working almost instantly,
- not waste time on dozens of menus and options looking for this one “Open project” or “Start working” button,
- and there are no UI elements that distract you.
When you click any phrase, the editor is displayed.
Area (1) contains the source and target phrase fields and some context to the left - with file name and ID of the phrase (2). Suppose the client decides to add more context in their Notes section (not visible here - it is available while creating a localization kit). In that case, the additional context and descriptions for phrases will also be visible here. Context is king/queen/god; you name it - the more context available for the translator, the better the final quality of the translation.
(3) are standard buttons to confirm (Save
Ctrl + ENTER ) and skip (Cancel
Ctrl + ,) a translated segment.
📚 Suggestions save time 🔗
SUGGESTIONS (4) tab is composed of max. 7 hits from ShareTM + InTM and one hit per each machine translation engine supported. This is quite an interesting set of features, I must admit. The hits displayed here come from two types of translation memories + automated translation engines.
ShareTM is a sort of a global TM shared by all clients using Localazy as their localization platform. So you can get human-translated matches from translations in other clients’ projects.
InTM is your own translation memory. The localized phrases saved here are private, and only you can use them.
Machine Translation - all automated engines that deliver better/worse translations. For obvious reasons, these hits are listed as last in the list of SUGGESTIONS. You can also buy an add-on to gain access to suggestions from additional MT engines.
👁️🗨️ Similar phrases in the project 🔗
The SIMILAR tab is composed of matches from the currently translated project.
You can insert these hits to Your translation pane with
Shift + number, just as in every other civilized CAT tool. 👍
🗃️ See translations in other languages 🔗
Next is the LANGUAGES tab, which is so helpful!
I love working on projects with “transparency” of translations because I can look at translations to other languages. And with the use of any external machine translation or my knowledge of other languages (other than English and Polish), I can check how other translators localized the source segment. Sometimes this feature saved me from terrible mistakes.
I use it always before asking the devs for clarifications. And sometimes, Russian (I know some Russian as well) translations that I noticed by chance were so strikingly different from mine that they made me question my understanding of the source and saved me from serious issues. 🤔
The bottom line is - I managed to avoid many localization errors because I was able to look at translations to other languages. This is a fantastic feature that is so rarely available in CAT tools.
💭 Asking the developer for context 🔗
And the last tab is my beloved feature - semi-automated queries. 🥰
Fantastic. It saves so much time when you do not have to switch to Excel or log in to an online tool to add a query. Moreover, in Localazy, you do not have to type in the same queries over and over again. You can just click a “Could you please clarify…” button, and this text is inserted automatically. Then you only need to type in the rest of your question. The way this COMMENTS feature is designed can save a lot of time, repetitive work, and frustration.
When translating a demanding or poorly written source text, translators sometimes tend not to ask the developers questions, even if they are unsure about the meaning or need clarification. This happens when they need to ask, and type in A LOT of queries.
After adding several comments, translators just stop doing this because “enough is enough,” “this takes so much time,” and the frustration along with some impostor syndrome “I should understand everything, and not ask so many questions! The devs will think I am not fit for the job” kick in. 😤
Here, the semi-automation of this tedious task saves a lot of time and allows for a higher quality of the final localization. Moreover, with this feature, translators can inform the devs that perhaps their source texts are not of the highest quality and should be rewritten - a win-win scenario for both parties and a great feature.
😎 In conclusion 🔗
And this is basically it when it comes to the translator’s role in Localazy. The features mentioned above and some mechanics allow you to deliver translated phrases and indicate them as ready-for-review. You do not need to finalize a project, export files, or send any packages.
In my opinion, being straightforward in visual communication with the user, having a limited set of features for translators, and presenting an uncluttered UI are the most distinct elements of Localazy. Moreover, thanks to this, Localazy sets the entry threshold on a very low level and is friendly for newcomers, which is quite unusual for any CAT tool.