Language services is a largely unsung industry – many people have never heard of it. Yet it’s a $34.8 billion industry, according to Common Sense Advisory, and growing. In a recent special feature, “Success in any Language,” Fortune Magazine provides an in-depth look at language service providers and their critical translation and interpretation services working in the background of today’s global economy.
Fortune starts out by highlighting the need for engaging consumers in their own language. Considering that nine percent of consumers in the U.S. don’t speak English and that consumers outside the U.S. overwhelmingly prefer their local language, there’s strong motivation for businesses to utilize translation and localization services. Beyond boosting credibility, relevance, and brand integrity, communicating to consumers can increase revenue; Fortune 500 companies with foreign-language websites were 50% more likely to report increased revenue when they increased their translation budgets. Continue reading »
Every two years the Olympics occur and the world is exposed to different cultures, traditions, and languages. As athletes from all nations compete on a global stage, a sense of unity occurs for both individual achievements and countries as a whole.
At each Olympic games, different countries languages, and dialects are represented. This brings up an interesting concept of language dialects contrasting. Athletes representing the countries of Spain and Mexico will be able to converse in their native tongue, but may not understand key words or phrases of the Spanish dialect they speak. Continue reading »
We live in a knowledge economy where a skilled workforce and educated audience are key components to enterprise-wide success. As corporate training and development needs grow globally, how is the industry evolving learning strategies and practices? Continue reading »
The pressure to translate both your company and product information has grown exponentially over the past few decades. With more and more content channels available, your global customers expect to interact with and learn about your business in their native tongue.
But professional human translation can be time consuming and expensive. Fortunately, automated translation can help companies and business stakeholders translate more of their content, at lower cost. Two unique types of automated translation are available to help companies tackle the translation challenge. Continue reading »
In today’s global business environment, consumers anticipate that companies will interact with them in their native language for everything from customer support to product information. If your business is looking to translate material into different languages, you must consider the amount of content that’s needed to meet consumer expectations and then multiply that by the number of languages you plan on providing. Your budget and timeframe will dictate how much content you’ll be able to translate. Luckily, automated translation is designed to make translation projects more reasonable when it comes to cost and turnaround time. There are several different types of automated translation, with machine translation (MT) being one of them. MT is the use of computer software and applications to translate text from one language to another. Usually, MT is used by language service providers (LSPs) as just one component of a whole translation process. To ensure the highest quality translation, the MT engine is customized by expert linguists who then post-edit the raw machine output to achieve the desired results. Continue reading »
Lately, augmented reality is stirring up quite a buzz in the world of technology, with the excitement growing around Google Glass and other technologies that are expected to change the way we live. Despite all the hype, it seems as though many people are still unsure about what exactly augmented reality is and how it works. Continue reading »
The role of localization engineering and whether it is necessary is often misunderstood when it comes to translation and localization projects. Many are under the impression that localization engineering is unnecessary in the context of a software localization project. In addition, a common question is, “My product has already been engineered, so why do I also need localization engineering?” and it’s understandable to ask this. For others, the term “localization engineering” conjures expectations based on standard software engineering. With this blog, I want to paint a clear picture of what exactly localization engineering is and how it is used, for those who may be unsure of its purpose and role, and to help you receive the maximum benefit from it. Continue reading »
When we look at a document, what do we see? Text – and it comes in a variety of forms, such as letters, numbers, punctuation marks, and other symbols. A computer, on the other hand, does not see text when it looks at a document because it’s not human and can’t actually read. Instead, it sees the text as a series of ones and zeros called binary data. As a result, the characters that comprise text must be represented as numbers so that computers can handle them. Encoding is the process of converting text into a coded format, which consists of numbers, so that a computer is able to read and understand it. More complex languages with a greater number of characters require more numbers to denote them. In the industry, the term for these numbers is “code points.” Determining which languages are more complicated depends on the number of “bytes” that it takes to represent its full alphabet. A byte is simply a unit used to measure quantities of computer information, and it’s equal to eight bits. Now that you know some of the basics, let’s take a look at which languages are easy to encode and which ones are a bit trickier. Continue reading »
Can you hear me now? This phrase may sound familiar to many since it was the infamous tagline from a former Verizon Wireless campaign. Although the wireless retailer used the expression to showcase its superior cell phone reception, it has a much greater significance in the context of global business. Speech is crucial to the way businesses operate on a daily basis, and it’s a major part of our society and culture. Human voice recordings are heard everywhere, from online training modules and advertisements, to websites and message machines. As a result, international organizations must consider translating any and all spoken words when marketing and selling their products and services globally. This includes audio advertisements, products that involve speaking or spoken words, and vocal services, like over the phone customer service. Continue reading »
In today’s fast-paced, high-tech business environment, translation project deadlines are shrinking. Companies expect more ROI from their global investments with a faster turnaround time than ever before. These growing demands have given rise to an increasing use of machines in the translation process. The language services industry has seen rapid growth of machine translation, and it is gaining exposure as a key translation tool. Machine translation (MT) is the use of computer software to translate a source language into another language. MT “engines” are the steering technology behind some of the website and browser conveniences we’re becoming accustomed to (think Google Translate, Bing Translator, Chrome’s Translate option bar, etc.). Improvements in the technology’s output quality have aided in its resurgence, for both general purposes and use by Language Service Providers (LSPs) who use it as a component in the translation process. So, let’s take a look at the different flavors of MT that exist today. Continue reading »