by Mirco Carlini
We've all heard about CATs, they're everywhere in this day and age. It is common knowledge that these powerful tools can help ensuring that your translation process is as smooth and stress-free as possible. Now, the world of CATs is wide and varied, there are many types of them, each with its own characteristics and behavior. Let's dive in and have a quick breakdown of how CATs can be invaluable friends and allies in your translation process and see what the main CATs are and what are their main points of strength.
This is one of many (there really are countless of them) CATs that are available on the market. As you can see, its fluffiness is medium/high. So how may I benefit from this CAT (or any other, for that matter)? By gently cuddling and stroking this CAT your stress levels will steadily decrease, and having it around might make you feel happier and maybe that deadline that's inching closer and closer won't look so dreadful with a CAT around. The majority of CATs also have a very useful function built in. It's sort of an alert sound that will ensure that you get up and walk for a bit. Some of you may know of the Pomodoro Technique. It's something like that, but cuter. Don't forget to actually "feed" your CAT by giving it food that is sold in specialty stores, otherwise its alarm will keep blaring. A CAT is truly a precious companion for a translator, because apart from these useful functions, it will generally keep you company. It really is like a friend!
SIAMESE CAT: This is one of the most famous CATs.
Be careful, though. It has very specific uses, and is therefore very expensive. It's not very versatile, but what it does, it does excellently. It's one of the most "intelligent" CATs, because it learns very easily (that's why it's quite suitable to NMT, Neural Machine Translation). It's the CAT of choice of many industry professionals. It is said that it helps produce very elegant and dignified translations. Its QA tools are very thorough and powerful. It's one of the CATs with the most varied alerts, so you can always know what needs your attention at a glance.
MAINE COON CAT: Go big or go home! This is one of the biggest CATs (make sure you have some free space on your disk - pardon, desk) and therefore its applications are very wide (it can do a lot of stuff) but not too deep (it can't do anything exceedingly well). If you need a "jack of all trades, master of none", this is the one to get. Its relaxation factor is sky-high thanks to its incredible fur. It will really relax you!
CAT: This is the swiss army knife of CATs. As you can see, it's just called CAT, because it's actually open-source and is not owned by any of the big industry leaders such as TABBY, SIAMESE and MAINE COON. Therefore, its biggest advantage is, of course, that it's free (most of the time). You can recruit one at one of the many "shelters" of your city/town. It's very resistant and can be taken everywhere with you (It's based on Cloud technology). It's very versatile, suitable for a great number of tasks. It does a lot, and it does it well, without complaining. This is the one to get, if you ask me.
These are the most common types of CATs, but you really cannot go wrong with any CAT. It will bring joy and comfort to any translation process. What CAT do you have? Let us know in the comments!
Mirco Carlini – Translator & Post-editor, Unstoppable reader and videogame lover, he loves peaceful hikes in the mountains as well as relaxing and swimming in the sea.
"A different language is a different vision of life." Federico Fellini