As you take your business global, “translation” and “localization” are two terms you may hear used interchangeably, but there are distinct and important differences. Let’s take a brief look at how they differ.
Translation is the process of changing a source version (usually English) of software, documentation, multimedia, or web material into a target-language version (any language) by simply changing the words from one language to another. Unfortunately, it is rarely a word-for-word swap. Continue reading »
I had some interesting discussions with a group of subject matter experts who are part of an e-learning design team. We were defining essential content for an e-learning course, and trying to identify engaging design strategies at the same time, so they could provide enough content to support those strategies. One of the big topics we discussed was interactivity. Most of the ideas generated involved videos and animations.
Now, I have nothing against multimedia, Continue reading »
In the early nineties, as CAT (computer-assisted translation) tools started to really take off, so was born the translation pivot file: an intermediary format that bridges translatable material from its native environment into the world of structured translation. The development of the pivot format facilitated Continue reading »
I recently attended Localization World, the premiere Translation/Localization Industry conference. I’ve been on the advisory committee for many years and I was impressed with the caliber of the presenters and the quality of the content.
There was a tremendous turnout with almost one-third from the client side, including industry leaders from Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, Cisco, CA, Harley Davidson, and iStockphoto to name a few Continue reading »
Today is a big day! Thousands of hours, hundreds of resources and millions of dollars in investment finally get their coming out day. Beyond the initial “WOW” factor of SaaS, Clouds and Real time assets, I think potential users will quickly see that theTranslation Workspace is also a fundamentally different way to work that will directly increase productivity and efficiency for the entire global supply chain.
Email and even workflow automated email is just not efficient for resolving quality issues or carrying out review tasks. We have all found that having a super cool $1m system that can automatically send my quality rejection back to my linguist does little to create greater in-market user adoption or even reduce my total attracted cost of translation. Quality and language development are collaborative Continue reading »
Often with internationalization one needs to systematically localize text literal strings found in SQL code for a database. This might represent SQL scripts to initialize a database with initial text field values or perhaps perform some systematic maintenance operations on the database to update one set of text values to a different set of text values, or possible it corresponds to error message text returned from stored procedures or user defined functions in the database that will surface to an end-user. In any case, there are a great number of ways to deal with localized database strings. Typically this involves somewhat ad hocmechanisms that are specific to the exact schema of the database at hand – using some combination of the following elements: Continue reading »
Language is continually evolving. For example, the word “hardware” has been around for many years but the meaning of the word has changed over time. “Hardware” used to refer to things like tools, nails, and pipe fittings, but it now also refers to computers and peripherals. By the same token, one word can have multiple meanings (e.g. “drive”) and multiple words can have the same meaning (e.g. “screen, monitor, display”).
It’s critical to clearly define these terms when translating content into other languages. That’s why one of the first questions your language service provider (LSP) will ask you is, “Do you have a glossary?” Continue reading »
Every time you shop, you evaluate quality. You check the expiration date, look at the brand name, the place of origin, etc.
The same applies when you buy Translation and Localization services. You evaluate the quality of the translation service provider (or “LSP,” which stands for Language Service Provider in this industry) using specific criteria, and then you measure the end project against specific goals:
•Accuracy: Faulty translation; omission; overtranslation.
•Compliance: Unacceptable terminology or usage according to your corporate standards.
•Linguistic: Violation of language norms; incorrect or inappropriate style; unacceptable punctuation, syntax, or usage according to dictionaries and other established standards; lack of fluency. Continue reading »
With the gradual proliferation of Unicode, the issue of different character encodings is fortunately becoming less-and-less of a headache, but we’re not quite there yet. Pre-Unicode encodings are occasionally still a factor for projects, and it can be challenging and sometimes confusing to identify what encoding you’re looking at, or to perform transcoding without causing character corruption.
It may come as a surprise to you that right now you’re probably looking at a capable and free encoding-diagnostics and transcoding tool – your web browser.
The Transcoding Challenge
Let’s take a typical situation Continue reading »
Spanish is the official language in 21 countries, with a large percentage of speakers in four other ones. Today, about 400 million people speak Spanish as a native language, making it one of the three most spoken languages in the world, and the third internet market by number of users. Spanish is also becoming more and more popular as a second or third language in several countries due to interest towards the many Spanish speaking nations; this is especially strong in Brazil and the United States.
In spite of being the language for countries in four continents, basic spelling and syntax are virtually identical for all Spanish speakers, and the main differences lie in pronunciation, terminology and grammar. But – as for English – educated speakers can understand each other regardless of their national origin: I, European Spanish native, can read Chilean newspapers, watch Mexican soap operas or chat with my Colombian colleague in Framingham without any major problem. Continue reading »