Yes, I want my consultation

OmegaT 3.0 Review, Part 1: Tag-related Improvements

Are you already using OmegaT 3.0?

If not, you really should. The latest version of the translation program OmegaT includes a lot of exciting improvements. A major block of improvements is related to working with tags. Watch this video to see how powerful tag handling in OmegaT has just become.


The first group of changes relates to working with tags within a segment:

In this example, I have a sample file and a translation memory. The segments in the translation memory don’t have any tags while the new source text does include them. This means I need to insert them manually. And the new functions make it very easy to do.

  1. First of all, I can move between the tags with a single keystroke when I press Ctrl + left or right arrow. In this sense, tags are processed as words. This makes it easier to delete them or move through a string of tags.
  2. The Insert Source Tags command became Insert Missing Source Tags. As the name implies, it now only adds the tags that are currently missing in the segment. Previously, it just inserted all the tags as a single string even if some of those tags were present in the translation. For example, I have four tags in the source text, but none in the target. When I press Ctrl+Shift+T, I get all four missing tags. But if I already have two tags, the next time I press this shortcut, I get just the two missing tags. And if just one tag is missing, only that tag is inserted the next time I press this shortcut.
  3. Better yet, a new command makes this whole process even more effective. The Insert Next Missing Tag command inserts just the next missing tag. This option is available under the Edit menu and the right-click menu. With this command, I can go through the entire segment from left to right and insert each missing tag one after another. And I can assign a shortcut to it as well. For example, I assigned this function to Ctrl + Shift + down arrow.

The second group of changes relates to working with tags in general:

  1. When you hover a cursor over a tag, a tooltip displays showing you what this tag represents. The explanation may not be exactly straightforward as in this case, but it’s better than nothing.
  2. OmegaT now includes an option to validate tags before creating the target files. This option is located in the Tag Validation dialog and is called Do not allow creating translated documents with tag issues. For example, I deleted several tags in this segment and added one extra tag in the next one. When I try to save the translated documents, a tag validation window appears. It has been also improved. The incorrect tags are highlighted. For those missing, the program says Missing. For those added incorrectly, the program says Extraneous. I have to fix the issues before attempting to save the target files again. From here, I can navigate to the segment, correct the tags, and return to this window. Note that whenever you delete a tag on purpose, you’ll have to disable this checkbox temporarily in order to be able to create the translated documents.
  3. OmegaT can also check the tags when you close each segment. To do so, go to the Editing Behavior dialog and enable the Validate tags when leaving a segment checkbox. For instance, I have several missing tags in this segment. OmegaT gives me an error as soon as I close it. Since this option is pretty much similar to Do not allow creating translated documents with tag issues, you might want to disable it so that it doesn’t trigger a tag error each time you go through this segment. You don’t have to worry about tags at this point anyway since you’ll be checking them for the entire project when you create the translated documents.
  4. The Editing Behavior dialog also includes a new option called Allow tag editing. This option makes it possible to protect tags. If it’s enabled, OmegaT displays the old behavior when it was very easy to damage a tag by deleting a slash or another character in a tag. For example, I can delete a part of this tag. But if I disable this checkbox, this will no longer be an issue. No matter how hard I try, I can’t delete any part of a tag. I can only delete the entire tag.

The combination of the new functions is a great improvement. Working with tags is easier than ever. And the likelihood of tag errors is lower than ever. It’s a big step forward. Hats off to the OmegaT development team!

Have you already put the new functions to use? Please share your experience in the comments if you have! And stay tuned for the next video about OmegaT 3.0.


Add comment

About the Author

Roman Mironov
Roman Mironov
CEO & Founder

As the founder of Velior, Roman has had the privilege of being able to turn his passion for languages into a business. He has over 15 years of experience in the translation industry. Roman has helped dozens of clients increase sales by making their products appealing for speakers of other languages.