Dirty Little Secrets for Translators


editing vs. proofreading vs. QA

This is an indicative list with all tasks that should be completed when you edit, proofread or QA a text.

Click on the table to zoom.

Proofreading table 40dots

Please feel free to send me your comments as I’m sure this table needs improvement.


How to remove a PDF password

This tool unlocks password-protected PDF files. But why would you want to unlock a password-protected PDF?

Because a locked PDF…

  • won’t let you count the total words
  • won’t let you convert it into a Word file
  • won’t let you use the typewriter to complete fields
Read more: http://www.pdfunlock.com

A spelling trick…

A nice trick that will help you save time and effort when spell checking a long text with lots of words unrecognized by Word. Let’s suppose that you have an 85-page medical text with unrecognized terms, such as etrolizumab and fresolimumab, repeated throughout the text. 

1) Locate the first instance of the term etrolizumab.
Normally Word won’t recognize it; instead it will display a red wavy line under the “unknown word.”
2) Make sure it has the correct spelling.
3) Right-click on it and select Ignore All.

This way, Word will ignore all correct instances of etrolizumab and it will only display a red wavy line under each misspelled instance of the term. Now, it should be easy for you to catch the misspelled etrolizumamb.


How to raise your monitor

Is your monitor high? Here are some tips that will help you work in a more comfortable and relaxed way.

Your monitor should always be in front of you and at the same height as your eyes.

ergo screen position

If you have a desktop, you can place your monitor on top of a phone book to raise it and save your back.


If you have a laptop, you can buy a keyboard and a laptop stand. This way, you’ll have a complete working station that will not add up to your hunchback problem.