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Dr. Tom's Independent Software Reviews

presents:

PractiCount and Invoice
Business Edition 2.4


Introduction:

Practiline Software is a privately held software development company. The company is one of the leaders in text counting, quoting and billing solutions for the language processing industry. The Company's mainstream product - PractiCount and Invoice - is currently licensed in more than 40 countries. Practiline's clientele includes small and medium-sized companies and individual users worldwide. The company is continually working to improve its existing products and services and introduce new ones to satisfy the needs of its customers.

Fig. 1: PractiCount File Selection: In a first step, selection of various file types and locations for the word count is very fast, easy and efficient
Please click on the image for a closer look!

Features:

PractiCount and Invoice is a word and line counting as well as invoicing program, equally suited for freelance translators, translation and localization agencies, medical and legal transcriptionists and transcription agencies, writers, project managers and other language professionals. It allows you to base your quotations and invoices on the document text count (word count, line count, gross line count, character count, page count or other text count types) as well as on time (hours/minutes). PractiCount handles a wide variety of file formats, including Microsoft (MS) Word, Excel, PowerPoint, as well as WordPerfect, HTML; XML and SGML, PHP and ASP and PDF files. An automatic unzip function allows the direct selection of zipped source files. Both, line and page counts are customizable and can be conducted in within multiple files, folders and sub folders. The application is also able to count text usually missed by MS Word - such as text boxes, headers, footers, annotations (comments), footnotes and endnotes as well as embedded (inserted) and linked objects. In addition, Tags and script elements in HTML can also be counted. You can include the result for any count into customizable detailed reports and print or export them to MS Word or Excel and produce elaborate invoices using a convenient customer database. Finally, a currency converter and calculator assists you in creating customized invoices.
The Business Edition offers all features of the Standard Edition plus Network support (counting of files on other computers within the local network), shell integration into the Windows Explorer (context (right-click) menu and the ability to import the count log into your report window enabling you to view count history by month, client and other features.

 

Editions & Prices:

Standard Edition: helps you to manage a small translation business - one user/1-PC - no networking.- US$  59.95. Volume pricing available

Business Edition: helps you to manage a small-to medium translation business. share your databases across several workstations. Standard pack includes 5 user licenses. Wider range of reporting (financial and operational) possibilities. - US$  99.95. Volume pricing available.

Fig. 2: PractiCount Report Window: Clear overview on files and quotation parameters. Convenient shortcuts transfer data to Microsoft Word or Excel and to the Invoice creation process
You may click on the image for a closer look!


Usage & Evaluation

PractiCount and Invoice is a fast, clear and effective tool for the analysis of text containing file types and the generation of invoices based on various word counts. It also features the support of often ignored special text elements such as footnotes, Alt-Tags and script content. Another nice feature is the easy import of contact data previously entered into another application. However, the current import editor allowing drag & drop of columns is a little cumbersome if data consisting of many columns are imported and intensive rearrangement is necessary. Here, a simple two window arrangement where you have to level corresponding columns in the same line by moving lines up/down or drag & drop would be much easier.
Unfortunately, there are no tutorials or wizards to shorten the learning curve getting used to this powerful application. Language professionals would also like to have the option to compute different word rates according to various word matching (fuzzy, full) and/or to include Trados or other TM support. Although PractiCount does not provide such functionality directly, there is a free stand-alone utility by the same company called Match Calculator where you can enter the statistics from any TM and calculate the billing amount according to the discount structure (% for repetitions, matches etc.). I suggested implementation of this tool into PractiCount.
Currently, user options / settings are distributed over various dialogs - they should be concentrated within 1 panel. Client and the own company information only allows to include either the company name or a personal name - both would be more appropriate. Further minor points are the lack of bank account information fields for multiple banks including international SWIFT (BIC) and European IBAN account information. Finally, the current currency converter which links to a web site, should retrieve daily rates from the internet right from within PractiCount.

Fig. 3: PractiCount Invoice Creation: Before you send the invoice to your customer, you can easily adjust the fields of the invoice form
You may click on the image for a closer look

In conclusion PractiCount and Invoice in concert with the Freeware tool Match Calculator is a great little helper for invoicing at an incredible reasonable rate.


System Requirements:
Hardware: Pentium 166 (or compatible), 32 MB RAM, 2 MB Hard Disk space.
Software: Windows 98, 2000, XP; MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) 97, 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003; MS Word required for counting WordPerfect files, Adobe Acrobat 5.05 - 6.0 or free Acrobat Reader 5.1 (free Acrobat Reader 6.0 is currently not supported) required for text count in PDF.

Company Information:
Pacific Business Centre, Practiline Software, P.O. Box 34069 #381, Seattle, WA 98124-1069, USA; Fax: +1 206-984-3919; E-mail: info@practiline.com; URL: http://practiline.com/

Alternatives:

  • Espresso: http://www.aquarius.net/ Business Management Tool for translators and translation agencies.
  • LTC-Organiser: http://www.langtech.co.uk/ Unique and innovative business process management and workflow control software system.
  • LTRAC: http://www.ltrac.com/ Group communication and collaboration tool designed for language translation agencies and large corporations
 

© 2003 by Dr. Thomas Wassmer, e-mail: tom at softreviews.org

 
 
  Translation & Localization
 

Project Management

 

Introduction

 

Espresso

  LTC-Organizer
 

LTRAC

PractiCount

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