Working with source PDFs is a fact of life for medical translators. A typical dossier, for instance, may contain thousands of pages that are uneditable, usually because the source documents were created a long time ago and faxed or simply converted to a graphic format. Where it get's "fun", though, is when a client sends multiple versions of a document, asking the translator to identify updates or reconcile the different versions.
Luckily, there are several good tools out there. At ForeignExchange, we use Docu-Proof, which is fast and robust. If you're looking for something free, DiffPDF is a terrific option.
DiffPDF offers two comparison modes – Text and Appearance. It highlights text and image differences between two selected PDF files. Here is a text comparison from AddictiveTips' review of DiffPDF:
Appearance mode is particularly useful. For example, if there is a size difference between images in the two compared PDF documents, DiffPDF will catch this and highlight it for the user's review. Here is another screenshot:
There are DiffPDF versions for Linux, Mac OS X and Windows. Head on over to the developer's site and check out DiffPDF!
[Hat tip to Lifehacker]
For more great tricks and tools, check out these articles:
- 7 localization tools - free or almost free
- Converting PDF tables to Excel
- Removing security from multiple PDF files
ForeignExchange Translations provides specialized medical translation services to drug and device companies.