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Product typology

For the sake of manageability and clarity, this section will contain only a basic typology of translators' software tools. Appendix Translation Tools offers a list of commercial products which were available as of March 1994.

As computers evolve, new capabilities are becoming available, particularly with regard to interprogram communication (this is, among other things, making it easier to integrate specialized translation programs with existing software). The following classifications therefore represent a cursory snapshot of a rapidly moving target.

It is useful to note that most commercial systems currently available are essentially designed with a single user or a small group of users in mind. This causes problems when one thinks of applying them in larger translation services (see the annex on SdT). A critical issue is validation. For a translation memory, for example, one does not aim for indiscriminate updating of the database with every new translation produced. Support for validation, even if only in the form of a 'layered' translation memory structure, is not found.