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There are some difficulties a translator meets when translating any parametrically coupled drawing elements

Not long ago, our customer who ordinary make requests for translating AutoCAD drawings asked our agency to translate the documents to be, at first sight, similar to those of the above ones. But later some real problems have occurred.


The matter is that all drawing text elements are parametrically coupled as variables and it is not possible to revise them directly by changing lettering.

Certainly, a technical translator is able to change any lettering deleting source language elements and substituting them for the Russian equivalent ones but the relation between originally issued drawing units would be disturbed.

Actually, any drawing translated and transformed in such a manner will fail to agree with a source document both in terms of its structure and internal links. Perhaps, a client would not be concerned about it and such problem cannot be fully understood by him/her at the phase of drawing translation. As a matter of fact, those who will use a translated drawing may depend on the previously created parametric system and links between formerly translated and current documents. As a rule, any specialist operating within the scope of a particular project has to be repeatedly linked to every individual drawing translation but the elements translated at various phases will be disrupted, thus making translated drawings unusable other than for reviewing.

Need to say, that it is rather easy to change parameter values in drawings as they are entirely accessible for editing and any skilled technical translator can successfully cope with such a job but here we have faced the challenge of another nature. With the same parameter integrated in a drawing, it cannot be referred to the original one. That is to say, before making any changes in a variable value it is necessary to clear out whether such variable is able to inherit any criteria or values from other variables. And should such inheritance links be absent in an individual drawing or in a drawing group, its value maybe changed.

We think that it is no matter for a drawing editor other than for translators who have to process a prepared drawing but not a dummy containing all necessary variables and values applicable in scope of a project. Quite an amount time is taken for finding any source variables, thereby making translation of drawings meaningless.

Translation of parametrically coupled drawing elements, drawing

We have suggested the client using the following method applicable for translating into Russian: to translate text details of a drawing and fill them in tables, thus making engineers individually develop their drawings and substitute source lettering for target ones – i.e. to change specific parameter values. This makes it possible to keep particular drawing structure and its links. No parameter will be changed but their values (attributes) will be substituted for Russian version.

If you can propose any alternative method and you are ready to share it with us, please leave your comment to this post.


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