The intricacies of display in SDL Trados Studio

Resizing windows in SDL Trados Studio 2009 / 2011As promised in my post on Zoom, font and display issues, here is a follow-up on more advanced display features in Studio 2011, 2014 and 2015. When you install Studio for the first time and open a file to translate in the Editor window, you’ll have all the default display settings in place. It looks a bit cluttered, but luckily there are lots of ways to customise it to suit you.

(Black font applies to Studio 2011; green font applies to Studio 2014 and 2015.)

Move/hide windows

Move: If you want to move a window, click on its drop-down menu and select “Floating”. To move it to the right of the screen, drag and drop it onto the right hand placeholder.

Drop onto placeholder

You can resize all the windows by dragging their margins, the same way you move the borders in a table in Word.

You can also drag an entire window onto a second monitor. This is useful if you want to see a real-time preview in full size, or if you have a lot of terms to display in Term Recognition.

Hide: If you don’t use a window very often, you can Auto Hide it. Click the window to make it active. Click the pin icon and the window will disappear. Hover over the tab and it will reappear, with the pin displaying horizontally.

Don’t forget that with Studio 2011 SP2 and Studio 2014 you can also make a window active by scrolling through the windows using Ctrl+Tab.

Troubleshooting three potential problems

  1. Over-enthusiastic customisation. You can reset the default layout if your customisation gets out of hand. Simply go to View and click “Reset Window Layout” (View tab>Reset Window Layout.)
  2. Lost “Find and Replace” window. This can be a problem when you switch from dual monitors to a single one. The Find and Replace window sometimes gets left behind on the second monitor. Click Ctrl+F to call it up and then use the Windows key on your keyboard plus the arrow keys to bring it back.
  3. Reopen a closed window. If you close an individual window and later decide you want it back again, go to View (View tab) and click the window name.

Customise the Editor Window

Within the Editor itself you can show/hide the different columns. Obviously you’ll want to see the source and target segments. The segment number column is also useful for selecting one or more segments and bringing up the context menu (merge/lock/copy to target/change segment status). I hide the document structure column to reduce the clutter by going to Tools>Options>Editor (File tab>Options>Editor) and disabling “Show document structure” under “Side-by-side Editor”.

Clearing the decks on a small monitor. Lots of translators work with multiple monitors, but if it’s just you and your laptop, it’s worth remembering that you can use F11 to toggle full screen mode on and off. Also, you can hide the Navigation Pane on the left hand side to give yourself more room in the Editor window. In Studio 2014 and 2015 you can hide/show the ribbon by toggling Ctrl+F1.

Whitespaces. It’s important to display whitespaces when you’re translating so that you can see the difference between a normal space and a non-breaking space, and to look out for double spaces left around tags, or at the end of a segment. Also, if you want to add a soft return in a segment using Shift+Enter, you’ll see it if you have whitespace characters enabled. The shortcut for whitespaces is Ctrl+Shift+8, as in Word.

Translation and Review toolbar in Studio 2011

“View” tab on the ribbon in Studio 2014

WYSIWYG. Studio offers a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) option (“Toggle formatting tag display” in the Studio 2014 screenshot above). It’s very important to see the exact location of tags when you’re translating, so I would only recommend using WYSIWYG if you combine it with “Show all formatting and tags” in Tools>Options> Editor (File tab>Options>Editor).

Tag display mode. You can choose how you want tags to be displayed: No Tag Text, Partial Tag Text, Full Tag Text or Tag ID. “Full tag text” (highlighted in the image above) tells you all about each tag, but tends to clutter up the segments, so I prefer the Tag ID and simply hover over the tag when I need to see all the details.

Auto-Scroll. Finally, there’s also an option to scroll through target and source segments separately. Default behaviour is “Auto-scroll Source Document” (you’ll find it listed under “View” in Studio 2011 [View tab]). When you disable Auto-scroll, an individual scroll bar will appear beside the source column. It can be toggled on and off. The option below it, “Scroll source to target section” realigns the segments. I’m not sure how useful the Auto-scroll feature is, because misaligned segments lose all their meaning and utility. As a search function, I prefer to use the powerful display filter boxes to bring together certain terms rather than scrolling through source and target separately. But I’d be interested to hear from anyone who can explain how they find it useful.

So, in a nutshell, these are some of the options for customising the interface in SDL Trados Studio. Have you got any other suggestions?

Image attribution: life_through_a_viewfinder
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11 Responses to The intricacies of display in SDL Trados Studio

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  6. Anna says:

    Thanks a lot!! I simply did NOT see the placeholders.
    So when my layout got messed up somehow, I did not know how to move and fix the Translation Results window back to top right above the source/target tranlation columns of the Editor.
    Luckily I found your article quickly and once I became aware of the hand placeholders, it was a matter of seconds. Thanks again!

  7. Tony Rudd says:

    Thanks for your useful and interesting article (like your previous articles)
    I am not sure how my problem relates to these font issues. The Studio 2011 editor seems to implicitly use the font associated with a Word document which is then represented WYSIWYG (usually correctly but sometimes incorrectly). Is there some way to explicitly see what the font attributes are (and change, if necessary?

    • To explicitly see the font attributes, you need to set tag display to “Full tag text” as explained above. You can’t change the font itself in Studio, but it should faithfully reproduce the source font.

  8. Jean-Marc says:

    Thank you so much for that one: Lost “Find and Replace” window. I was lost indeed…

  9. Hi everyone,

    Comments on this post are now closed. If you need help with Studio issues, I recommend the Studio User group on Yahoo Groups or the SDL Trados support forum on ProZ.

    If you’d like my advice about solving specific Studio issues or personal guidance as you start out with Studio, please click the contact tab above to arrange a consultancy session.


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