MemSource Cloud

Hannah Berthelot
MultiLingual March 2013
Product Reviews

Not quite two years old, MemSource Cloud is already developing into a complete and user-friendly online translation environment. The developers were originally attached to a Charles University research project that resulted in a server and code editor plug-ins destined to solve the problem of inconsistency when translating text strings. Based in Prague, MemSource is proving to be a useful resource for project managers and linguists alike. . .


. . .The desktop editor is just as simple to use as the browser environment. In order for it to be fully operational, you must remember to log in and establish a connection with your server, thus also creating a link between the TMs and term bases assigned to the project being translated. This way, unlike working in an entirely browser-based environment, translation can continue despite an unsure connection to the internet. This, coupled with the fact that this editor can be downloaded for free, makes MemSource ideal for working with linguists in regions where internet may be spotty. It is a bit of a shame that in an industry putting increasing focus on interoperability the editor cannot process nor produce bilingual files in any format other than MXLIFF (MemSource’s own internal bilingual format), though you can download a bilingual .docx that conveniently marks repetitions for you. 

Early this year MemSource will release its new browser-based editor (Figure 4). It is a kind of pared-down version of the already rather simple desktop editor (Figure 5), perfect for the straightforward translation project that does not require the multitude of bells and whistles that many other, stand-alone computer-assisted translation tools offer. There are very few buttons cluttering the screen; one can find standard options such as “Split and Join,” “Copy Source to Target” and “Insert Tag.” There is also a nice filtering option that essentially serves as a search that leaves only relevant segments visible. I do question the utility of the taskbar at the top that seems mostly to contain options available in the very visually self-explanatory buttons, especially since in the MemSource system less is often more. It is rather nice, however, that this same taskbar contains a link (under “Help”) to the User Manual, MemSource’s extensive yet eminently approachable Wiki. Both editors, browser and desktop, offer minimal quality assurance (QA) tools, perhaps due to the double-edged sword of the pared-down, user-friendly interface. . .