Frequently Asked Questions

Quick reference to popular and frequently asked questions.

Slate Desktop™ is developed and tested with Python version 3.8.x. Versions 3.8.0 and newer are.

The Python Foundation has published this announcement:

DEPRECATION: Python 2.7 will reach the end of its life on January 1st, 2020. Please upgrade your Python as Python 2.7 won’t be maintained after that date. A future version of pip will drop support for Python 2.7.

Versions of before Slate Desktop™ update 1.7.0 installed Python 3.7. We found a serious incompatibility between this version and one of the additional libraries that we need. Therefore, all future development with Slate Desktop™ will be Python 3.8 and above and we ask all customers to update to Python 3.8. Installers after 1.7.0 takes care of this in most cases.

The Slate Desktop™ installs Python with its installation if it was not found on the PC, but it does not uninstall Python.

We strongly urge customers to follow the instructions in this article to uninstall Python 2.7, Uninstall and Deactivate (https://www.slate.rocks/portfolio/uninstall-and-deactivate/). Then, when Slate Desktop™ re-installs, it will not detect Python and install the newest version.

Follow these steps to install Slate maintenance updates and fixes:

  • Click your personal download link and download the newest installer.
  • Unblock the downloaded file if necessary (right-click/properties/unblock).
  • Close the Slate Desktop™ application and all of your CAT tool applications.
  • Run the downloaded installer. It will:
    • detect your current installation
    • prompt you to confirm your license & configuration details
    • re-authenticate your saved license key, email address and product
    • uninstall the outdated Slate program and CAT plugins from your system
    • re-install the updated Slate Desktop™ program
    • activate the license count
  • Start Slate Desktop™. All translation memories and engines are ready for you to use.

Read the full User’s Manual lesson here: Install, Activate and Update

Hardware System Requirements

  • Intel Core i5 (i7 recommended) or AMD Athlon 64 CPU (4-core x86-64, 2.4 GHz. more cores and faster are better)
  • 8 GB of RAM (16 GB better, 4 GB possible as a toys)
  • 2 GB of free hard drive space for base application
  • 20 GB minimum free space during install. 100 GB (and more) on a high-performance drive is strongly recommended.

Training Corpus – Translation memories to convert to corpus or publicly available corpus.

Personalized engines

  • 70,000 to 150,000 sentence segments
  • One full-time translator’s work for 3 to 4 years

Customized engines

  • 200,000 to 500,000 sentence segments
  • Supports a team of translators

Specialization

Using translation memories with only specialized segments yields better custom machine translation. Specializations such as financial & regulatory reports, clinical trials & pharmaceuticals, technical manuals, legal contracts, etc. yield more consistent and accurate translations.

There’s no upper limit on the number of segments, but too many segments may degrade the engine for specific, specialized use.

Languages – Supports all languages and all new languages added with maintenance updates. Your translation memories and Slate Desktop™ create engines that translate between any combination of the 48 possible language pairs. That’s 2,256 language pair combinations.

48 languages in alphabetical order (English) for 2,256 possible language pairs

  • Arabic * (ar)
  • Assamese (as)
  • Bulgarian (bg)
  • Catalan (ca)
  • Chinese * (zh)
  • Croatian (hr)
  • Czech (cs)
  • Danish (da)
  • Dutch (nl)
  • English (en)
  • Estonian (et)
  • Finnish (fi)
  • French (fr)
  • Gaelic (ga)
  • German (de)
  • Greek (el)
  • Gujarati (gu)
  • Hebrew * (he)
  • Hindi * (hi)
  • Hungarian (hu)
  • Icelandic (is)
  • Indonesian (id)
  • Interlingua (ia)
  • Italian (it)
  • Japanese (ja)
  • Kannada (kn)
  • Korean (ko)
  • Latvian (lv)
  • Lithuanian (lt)
  • Malayalam (ml)
  • Manipuri (ni, mni)
  • Marathi (mr)
  • Norwegian (no)
  • Oriya (or)
  • Persian * (fa)
  • Polish (pl)
  • Portuguese (pt)
  • Romanian (ro)
  • Russian (ru)
  • Serbian (sr)
  • Slovak (sk)
  • Slovenian (sl)
  • Spanish (es)
  • Swedish (sv)
  • Tamil (ta)
  • Telugu (te)
  • Turkish (tr)
  • Ukrainian (uk)

48 languages ordered by 2-letter ISO 639-1 code for 2,256 possible language pairs.

  • ar (Arabic*)
  • as (Assamese)
  • bg (Bulgarian)
  • ca (Catalan)
  • cs (Czech)
  • da (Danish)
  • de (German)
  • el (Greek)
  • en (English)
  • es (Spanish)
  • et (Estonian)
  • fa (Persian*)
  • fi (Finnish)
  • fr (French)
  • ga (Gaelic)
  • gu (Gujarati)
  • he (Hebrew*)
  • hi (Hindi*)
  • hr (Croatian)
  • hu (Hungarian)
  • ia (Interlingua)
  • id (Indonesian)
  • is (Icelandic)
  • it (Italian)
  • ja (Japanese)
  • kn (Kannada)
  • ko (Korean)
  • lt (Lithuanian)
  • lv (Latvian)
  • ml (Malayalam)
  • mr (Marathi)
  • ni (mni, Manipuri)
  • nl (Dutch)
  • no (Norwegian)
  • or (Oriya)
  • pl (Polish)
  • pt (Portuguese)
  • ro (Romanian)
  • ru (Russian)
  • sk (Slovak)
  • sl (Slovenian)
  • sr (Serbian)
  • sv (Swedish)
  • ta (Tamil)
  • te (Telugu)
  • tr (Turkish)
  • uk (Ukrainian)
  • zh (Chinese*)

An engine built with your personal machine translation memories works better for you because it learned how to translate using your knowledge and style. That’s why you’re comfortable using it. Even it’s errors use your vocabulary with some of your style and overall, there’s less for you to correct.

But, your personalized translation engine does not work better for everyone. Other translators using your engine will feel differently about your engine’s translation. It’s natural for them to use different words in a different style. Likewise, if you were to use another translator’s personalized engine, you would likely feel less comfortable.

If you know how to use a file/open dialog in MS Word, then you know how to import your translation memories into Slate Desktop™. If you know how to use an MT connector in your CAT, like DeepL in Trados Studio, then you know how to use Slate Desktop™‘s MT connector.

The only question remaining is will your translation memories perform to your liking as a training corpus. I’m ready to help you, as my customer, explore the strange and new concepts in Slate Desktop™. Only you can answer the questions and you have 60 days to experience your engines and evaluate their impact on your work.

Money Back Guarantee – Buy Slate Desktop™, experience great technical support and learn how your translation memories perform as machine translation. If you’re not fully satisfied, uninstall Slate Desktop™ and request a refund within 30 days of your purchase. We will refund your full purchase price immediately – no questions asked.

Yes. Slate Desktop™ becomes another MT resource along side all the other resources in your computer-assisted translation tool. The glossaries, term bases and other MT plugins are all there and ready for you to use.

Yes. Before you can use Slate Desktop™, you must build an engine. To build an engine, you must have translation memories or training corpus but they don’t have to be your personal work. You can use any translation memories and there are many free public sources for training corpora, but if you don’t have a training corpus, you can’t use Slate Desktop™.

No. Think about it. Microsoft can not and does not guarantee that Word creates Pulitzer-winning novels. They guarantee functions like bold, styles and layout work.

Adobe can not and does not guarantee that Photoshop creates award-winning graphics. They guarantee that the circle tool draws a circle and the fill tool uses blue when you want.

The same is true with Slate Desktop™. We guarantee the tools give you a medium to work. The more you use these tools, the better you get at expressing your creativity through the medium.

About 90% of customers report Slate Desktop™ helps them realize their goals. You won’t know how it works for you until test it. During that time, I guarantee that you’ll experience a great product with the best customer support. I guarantee to refund your purchase if you simply ask and uninstall within 60 days, no conditions attached.

Slate Desktop™ uses the same machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies as online MT. So, what’s the difference? You “teach” Slate Desktop™ with your translation memories as the text book. It studies your translation units and learns your bilingual knowledge, vocabulary and translating style. Then, it creates translations with that knowledge and style.

Yes. Slate Desktop™ is really easy to use. The point-n-click application hides the powerful machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies. They run seamlessly on MS Windows and simplify custom machine translation for everyone.

You invested $269 in Slate Desktop™. Here are three ROI scenarios.

Let’s say you work with a computer-assisted translation tool and translation memories. Projects with 15,000 words take five days at $0.10 per word. You invoice your customer $1,500 on Friday.

You try Slate Desktop™ and learn it boosts your productivity 30%. Now, projects with 15,000 words take 3 days at the same $0.10 per word. You invoice your customer $1,500 on Wednesday.

You have two free days per week, week after week, month after month. You’re now earning at about $500 per day, Slate Desktop™ paid for itself in half of a day. It’s a pretty good return.

In another scenario, you work with a computer-assisted translation tool and translation memories. You post-edit using your customer’s online machine translation. Projects with 19,000 words takes 5 days at $0.08 per word for post-editing rates. You invoice your customer $1,520 on Friday.

You discover by adding Slate Desktop™, and you boost your productivity 20%. Now, projects with 19,000 words takes 4 days. You invoice your customer $1,520 on Thursday and start working a new project on Friday.

That gives you an extra free day in your week, week after week, month after month. Now earning about $350 per day, Slate Desktop™ pays for itself in one day.

This is a modest scenario. You work with a computer-assisted translation tool, translation memories and online machine translation. You pay $22 per million characters for your online machine translation subscription. Projects with 15,000 words take 4 days at $0.10 per word.

Your Slate Desktop™ tests show your productivity equals your current online machine translation. That’s parity. Projects with 15,000 words are complete in 4 days.

You bought Slate Desktop™‘s one-time license for $269. It costs nothing to use it. At parity, you can stop paying the recurring subscription fees to the online service. Your monthly expenses drop $50 or $60 per month. Slate Desktop™ pays for itself in five (5) months. That’s a pretty good worst-case scenario!

Slate Desktop™ runs on your PC. It works in the background and delivers machine-translated segments without sending your customer’s information to the Internet.

Slate Desktop™ is for one translator. Machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies are configured one translator, you. The online services configure their technologies for millions of users.

Slate Desktop™ does not instantly translate after you install it. You must first “teach” it how you want your translations by building a machine translation engine.

They’re easy. You configure your computer-assisted translation tool to use Slate Desktop™ just like it uses the online services.

They’re automatic. Your computer-assisted translation tool automatically shows you machine translated segments from Slate Desktop™ and the online services.

They’re advanced. Slate Desktop™ and the online services share mature machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies.

They deliver a “brand” of quality. Some translators prefer the “Google brand.” Others prefer the “DeepL brand.” Some prefer the “Slate Desktop™ brand.” You get the idea.

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