I figured I would make this post in the hopes that there are other translators and interpreters who trawl through these forums.
I recently took advantage of the recent Black Friday / Cyber Monday sale to upgrade my copy of DEVONthink Pro to DEVONthink Pro Office because of the mail importing feature (which I have been using regularly) and the web server feature (which I plan to use due to having a Windows machine).
I am a freelance translator and interpreter by trade. Since I am not a full-timer who is part of a specific company, I have clients of various fields ranging from agriculture to finance, and more often than not, these are fields that have zero relevance with my formal education. This means that I have to become familiar with my client’s expertise very quickly in order to do my job effectively - after all, translation and interpretation is not merely taking the utterances of one language and changing them into another language.
Even before the upgrade, DEVONthink Pro has been extremely useful in helping me familiarizing myself with my clients’ material and relevant documents I come across on my own while researching. In fact, the two features that make DTP worth its price, and then some, are concordance and See Also.
Concordance is a godsend because when I interpret, I need to create what is called a “glossary.” As the name states, it’s a list of different terms and their counterparts in the other language. The purpose of this is to mentally offload technical terms and jargon used in my client’s industry so I can dedicate more brain cells to deciphering the speakers’ utterances. When I have a ton of documents and web links, I can use the concordance feature to see which terms come up frequently, saving a fair amount of time in compiling the glossary. On top of that, each term shows other relevant terms that seemingly appear frequently with them. I realize that since this is automated, there might be certain “blind spots” that people with more knowledge in the field might spot, but frankly, when I am starting with zero knowledge, it helps.
See Also is really helpful when I get a virtual briefcase’s worth of documents from the get go. Even if I do my due diligence with reading the documents, and even add relevant tags, it is inevitable that I forget about certain specifics. To me, See Also acts as a reminder of sorts to take a second look at a potentially relevant document, thereby enhancing my understanding.
I’m sure that there are additional features that will further enhance my workflow, but for now, these two really take the cake and make my research so much easier. In fact, DTPO has become so useful to my professional life that it’s going to take Devon Technologies going bankrupt and ceasing support before I give up using a Mac at this point in time.
If there are other users in identical or similar fields, I look forward to hearing any other useful tips or tricks that can help