26 July 2016

Who needs to go from .doc or .docx to .idml?

Following my earlier posts on workflows involving the delivery of translations as .doc or .docx files with a view to producing end products laid out using InDesign, some readers have asked me to explain the sorts of projects I refer to.

First, it's true that many translation projects involving InDesign come from clients who want the translator to produce an end product in the target language from a source document already laid out using InDesign. For the corresponding workflow, see Workflow for .idml to .idml.

Today's question is, however, Who needs to go from .doc or .docx to .idml?
Well, there are translation customers in France and elsewhere who publish some documents in one or more target languages but not in the source language.
Indeed, when you think about it, this situation is potentially applicable to any organisation marketing or promoting products or services in foreign-language markets differently from the way these things are done on its home market.

More specifically, some of my clients draft technical journalism articles in French that are tailored specifically to promote French products and services in English to international target audiences using arguments, writing styles and publication formats that are different from those used in France. In the case of end documents laid out using InDesign, the source articles are drafted over a period of several weeks, translated and laid out progressively as the articles are made available, then published as an online and/or printed magazine as the last step of a long process.

The French-mother-tongue technical journalists draft their articles using Microsoft Word; the translators draft their translations using Word; and the page layout team does the layout using InDesign. The completed magazine is published in English, but not in French.

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After completing a BSc in physics and maths in Australia and extended travels in Africa I found a job in Paris that left me with considerab...