Working With Anaphraseus In Openoffice

CAT is a term for Computer Aided Translation. It is software that constantly (when it is active) stores pairs of translated and original texts into its Translation Memory (TM). When a translator translates a document, the software suggests him or her all previously translated texts from its TM.

CAT is a term not used for machine translation, which is a different thing. CAT software usually works hand in hand with editors like MS Word or; it compares the text stored in TM with the document’s one and gives suggestions to the translator.

There are many commercial CAT tools on the market today like Trados, minimalist Wordfast or Metatexis. Wordfast, for example, is not a standalone software and requires MS Word (it works as a macro in it).

Anaphraseus: CAT With

Anaphraseus as the extension for installs directly from the OOo’s menu: Tools | Extension Manager, where you just click on the Get more extensions here… text. In the OOo extensions website, which appears in your default browser after clicking on the above text, you will find Anaphraseus.

You will get a file with an OXT extension (some older versions used a Zip format). After downloading it, click on the Add button in the OOo Extension Manager window and find the OXT file on your PC. When done, read the license and scroll down to accept it. After you click on the Accept button Anaphraseus will permanently move to your OOo Extension Manager.

Anaphraseus is not platform dependent but OOo dependent. It works in OpenOffice, no matter if you work with Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, OS/2, or even OpenBSD. This nice CAT extension is compatible with 2.1 and higher; StarOffice 8, Update 5 or higher, and it will give you the following possibilities:

* Term Recognition

* Fuzzy Search

* Unicode UTF-16 TMX Export/Import

* Plain text and Unicode UTF-16 TM

* User Glossary

After the installation you need to restart for the changes to take effect. You will then see a new panel with the Anaphraseus icons appearing in the OOo environment.

To make your first translation, create (or import) your 1) Translation Memory; 2) open a document with your desired source language; and 3) start translating it by clicking on the Alt+Down button on the Anaphraseus icon panel.

Translation Memory

The first step is to create (or possibly to import) your TM. To do this, click on the Anaphraseus Setup icon, select New, and then enter pertinent TMX codes, which you will need for cases you decide to export your TM later (see Little Glossary at the bottom). You will need a separate TM for every language combination – for example, if you translate from German to Polish, this combination – that is, this TM is not good for translation from Polish to German.

The software allows you to work with many Translation Memories. You can use them for any translation job; for example, bible-italian2eng.txt (from Italian to English) or bible-eng2italian.txt (from English to Italian) will be your TM’s for biblical translation projects (both Wordfast and Anaphraseus use TXT format in their TM’s).

A little CAT glossary


In Computer Aided Translation you use the Translation Memory eXchange (TMX) format (XML) because translators often need to migrate (export/import) their TM’s to a variety of CAT tools they use. It is a translator’s right to choose any CAT software and in case a group of translators works on a project, they can thus share their TM’s. Many CAT tools use their own (proprietary) Translation Memory formats and TMX helps translators and translating agencies share their TM’s easily. For example, you export your TM from a proprietary CAT application’s format (like Trados, etc.) to the TMX format and then you import this TMX format to Anaphraseus (or to any other CAT tool).

TMX is a type of database with various codes that identify languages (CS-01 for the Czech language, EN-US for US English, etc.).


If Anaphraseus asks you whether you want to use Unicode, you need to know that CAT software may have problems to display words with diacritical marks such as those used in East-European languages. By the term “displaying” I mean that once the source and target sentences get to TM, Anaphraseus will compare the source sentence in the document with the one in its TM and will show you the target sentence if it meets certain criteria. With the Unicode font it will display correctly all the fonts. If you do not work with Western-type languages, it is always a good idea to use Unicode.

Cleaning Up

The term “clean up the document” in CAT terminology means that you remove the original (source) text from the document, which keeps staying there for editing purposes. Both source and target segments are delimited with color markers such as {0> and you may not delete them from the document (of course, you can, but only by “cleaning up the document”). Authors of CAT tools know that translators need to compare the original text with the translated one even after the translation is finished. In addition to the fact that Anaphraseus (and many other CAT tools) saves pairs of sentences in its TM you will also have these pairs embedded in the document until you clean it.

If the document is not yet cleaned, you may always click on the Arrow Down button on the Anaphraseus toolbar, compare the source (original) text with the translated one, and continue editing it. When you are finished, choose CLEAN UP. The software will ask you if you want to update your Translation Memory. All color markers and source sentences will disappear from the document and you will only see your final work (the text you translated).


Anaphraseus does not have all the functions of commercial applications (such as Pandora’s box, etc.), but not all translators need comprehensive solutions every hour and every day. has thus become not only a complex and very useful tool for translators, but also a little star on your way to freedom.

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