IBM MT Open Source Dubbed OpenTM2

by Translation Guy on July 16, 2010
0 comments

Translation: IBM has announced the creation of an open-source project around its Translation Manager/2 (TM/2) software and named it OpenTM2. The project’s aim is to promote open standards like Translation Memory eXchange (TMX) in the translation and localization industry, and to develop an open source translation platform based on such standards. To achieve this, IBM is cooperating with the Localisation Industry Standards Association (LISA), which oversees TMX spec development.

A reference implementation of a fully open translation environment is available to integrate the OpenTM2 CAT system with the free Joomla CMS and the equally free GlobalSight translation management system by Welocalize. OpenTM2 for Windows is released and available to download free of charge.

Don DePalma in Global Watchtower said that translator preferences include translation memories unattached to competitors’ apron strings, so this one may have legs, especially with Cisco, LISA, Welocalize and others behind it.

“With consistency in tooling and exchange standards in an open environment, translators are no longer limited to the choice of expensive proprietary software with very limited interoperability with other commercial tooling.” Translation: “If you think Trados sucks and costs too much, we can stop the burn!” OpenTM2 aims to manage translation for quality and scalability as a comprehensive localization tool with easy API integration.

Featuring soup-to-nuts for the whole translation workflow!
1.     Project management
2.     Translation-work tracking and reports
3.     Reuse of existing translation
4.     Translation memory
5.     Terminology management

The objective is to develop translation asset-related open standards, such as TMX, so B2B exchange of language assets can occur on an open platform.

That means bigger databases. And bigger is better when it comes to databases. When the singularity arrives, they’ll just be that one big database in the sky. Skynet for Translators. “Hasta la vista, Baby.”

The little terminology silos we construct for each client are tumbling down like so many sandcastle Towers of Babel as the tide of the new comprehensive translation ecology scuttles and oozes up the beach.

Jaap van der Meer talked to the guys with the biggest translation sandboxes in an interview published in TAUS a few months ago.

Rory Cowan, CEO and President of Lionbridge, talks about Logoport and their decision to move forward with a new platform. “The strategic value of Logoport may be less in the short-term savings on licenses and implementation costs and more so in the new perspective of sharing of linguistic data. Who said that localization is proprietary and that the choice of one translation or another for a menu option on your computer screen would change your mind and buy the other system? Just imagine, if we could throw everything in one big bucket and organize our linguistic resources―translation memories and terminology―by industry domains rather than by the limited company confines. Wouldn’t everybody benefit?”  Everybody?

Mark Lancaster, CEO of SDL and proud owner of Trados, likes holding all the marbles. “No matter where the customer is coming from, he will benefit from our strong technology advantage. Sometimes they will buy the software licenses to do their own thing. Sometimes they will ask us to build a solution and operate it for them. And quite often they will simply buy the translated words from us. In all these scenarios the technology benefits both us and the customer.”

But where’s the benefit for translation guy? Next sandbox, please?

0 Comments

  1. Suzy says:

    It was surprising that no one is flaming IBM yet. They’re not so friendly to opensource either, in fact before Microsoft was “IT super power” it was IBM and now its Apple. Funny that we get all heated up when we hear Microsoft, but forget that Microsoft is not the only company that is not showing its source.

  2. Franky says:

    To give credit to IBM, they made eclipse fully open sourced. They fund a lot of Linux and java-based opensource projects. More particularly they funded CouchDB, which was developed by Damien Katz, ex-IBM employee who worked on Lotus Notes team which is a similar document based DB.

  3. Idka says:

    Well, they’re all pissed that Indonesia is giving major priority to Linux and FOSS (no matter what the publicity statements say). I’m sure that IBM has put in a bid, but it’s not likely the’ll be accepted either. Actualy, this has been brewing for some time.

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