In blog Part 1, we discussed the exciting new possibilities that come with combining Studio 2021 with our new companion SDL Trados Live cloud offerings. In this blog, however, I want to concentrate on the more ‘traditional’ use scenarios as we have made many enhancements – all with a view to making working more flexible and staying faithful to our tag line for Studio 2021: “Choose Flexibility. Choose Trados.” Let’s dive right in as there is a lot to cover!
If there is one frequent ask that many users have had for us since back in Studio 2009, it is the ability to go beyond the somewhat strict formats that we support for common linguistic formats like numbers, measurements or dates. We call these items “placeables” as you are able to “place” them in the target segment using the QuickPlace feature in Studio, but often their format needs to change in this process. A very common example is placing an English (US) number into a German target sentence. Here, the number format typically needs to change from dots to commas for decimal separators – i.e. from 234.56 in English to 234,56 in German.
While we have always supported such ‘default’ formats out of the box, the reality is that real-life documents can have almost ‘any random format’ for such placeables. This is where, previously, Studio was behaving quite strictly and insisted that such number formats were not following the ‘proper’ settings for the source or target language and so you could not customize them. With Studio 2021, this is a thing of the past and you can now change all these formats as you please.
Even if you have challenges such as (non-breaking or normal) spaces for thousand separators, e.g, “Again I did not win the €1 000 000 lottery last weekend”, you will be able to specify these in your translation memory settings and they will then be recognized in your projects (including in the QA checker) so that you will not see any “false positives” for such formats.
As part of this change, we have also addressed other long-standing requirements. One of these is to be able to translate so-called ‘long’ date formats to their ‘short’ equivalents in the target. Previously, Studio would insist you stay in the long or short format, depending on what is in the source sentence. This has now been changed and you can freely pick any long or short format from any of the built-in lists – or from your own custom date or time formats as you can customize those as well.
Based on your excellent feedback over the years, we kept refining what we call the “Advanced Display Filter”. Some of you might have noticed some of these improvements in the “Community Advanced Display Filter” app. Well, we have now taken this app, refined it further, and will include it out-of-the-box in Studio 2021 under the name of “Advanced Display Filter 2.0”! It contains so many new possibilities - one particularly interesting one that I personally used the other day is the ability to filter all occurrences of a repetition. Simply select the repeated segment, click a button and look at all its repetitions in the document. This can highlight any potential inconsistencies much faster than before and is just one of the many examples that make you more… did I say flexible? :)
If there is one aspect that I am huge fan of in Studio, it is the SDL AppStore - not just the capability itself, but also the team and big development community behind it. That community, as well as Paul Filkin and the internal app store team, all strive tirelessly with many of you to come up with all kinds of interesting extensions and capabilities (200+ at the time of writing!) for Studio to make you more… “flexible”… and productive.
If there was any drawback so far, it is that not all of you were aware of the app store, missing out on the many capabilities it can offer. Also, the experience of finding, downloading, installing and updating apps was not optimal so far. You had to go out of Studio, open your browser, go to the app store, find an app, download and install it outside of Studio… Well – all these steps are now available at a click of a button right inside Studio itself! Simply go to Add-Ons -> SDL AppStore and see a list of your currently installed apps, along with a smart update feature that lets you see any apps that can be updated at this point in time.
You stay in control – you decide when to update as it can be risky to change a running system during a project. Also, there’s a second tab that lets you access the app store itself, list and search for all apps and install them with one click. It’s a whole new app store experience that should help ‘democratize’ the apps for everyone.
As part of integrating the app store, we also integrated the “Community Inside” app that you can access from the Help ribbon now. Find all Studio communities, discover answers and ask your own question at the click of the mouse button. Neat!
It’s really tricky for me to cover the scope of Studio 2021 - even in two separate blogs, but yes, there is more. For instance, we updated the default layout in SDL MultiTerm 2021 to make it much more powerful than in earlier releases and increase its usability at the same time.
We are also updating the file types, including launching a new file type for the YAML format. What’s more, we are looking at frequent actions in Studio – such as accessing the translation memory view or accessing project settings with many TMs – and want to see if we can increase the performance and speed of such actions. We will inform you of these more granular enhancements as we get closer to the release, so stay tuned. I hope you, like me, are looking forward to more flexibility and higher productivity by using Studio 2021!