Now and then I get a request to translate a PDF file.
It is usually not so straightforward. A PDF file has been made
specifically to read and to print, not to edit.
That does not mean, however, that a PDF file cannot be translated. The information below is
invaluable to save me as a translator but also you and your business a lot of work.
If you have a PDF file you want to have translated, there are two
possibilities: either you also have the source file (the file used to
create the PDF), or you do not.
You do have a source file
If the source file of the PDF file is
a Word file, then please send me the Word file. I can then work
directly within it and return a translated Word file to you.
Perhaps the PDF file is made based on a package such as
FrameMaker or InDesign and you may believe rightly so that I do not have
these packages. However, I can deal with FrameMaker or InDesign files
Though, your DTP specialist may have to make a very small change to
get me a translatable file. Five minutes of work for your employee
hours saved in the long run.
Example of a scanned PDF file
When I return the translated file, you can load it directly into your
package and at most, all you need to straighten out some of the layout. Since I
have an excellent knowledge of my own software, I can save you hours and
that you would otherwise have to spend at copying and pasting
translated text from Word to the software you are using.
You do not have a source file
Sometimes you do not have a source file, because the origin of the file
is unclear or because you are dealing with scanned pages. The
question remains: to what extent would you like to keep the layout of
the original file?
If the layout is not important, I will translate the PDF file
manually in Word, with very little layout.
However, if the layout is important, then I can come up with a
This will, of course, entail extra costs (how much depends on
the complexity of the layout), but it saves you all of the layout work
In short, even though a PDF file is rather inaccessible, I can deal
with it and I can save you a lot of time
. Do not hesitate to ask for my advice
Back to the article overview.