SDL Passolo Day – Software Localization in Focus!
Last week we hosted the SDL Localization Day, where we looked at the issues of delivering software on a global scale. It was made up of six sessions including, as is so often missed with these events, a customer case study from Roche Diagnostics.
For the format of the day, we ran a series of webinars “nose to tail”, meaning that you could drop in and out as needed. It seemed that most people stayed for all sessions, but as everything was virtual, we didn’t really know if you’d stepped away from your desk for comfort or tea breaks!
You may be Agile, but are you globally Agile?
I opened up Passolo Day by looking at the results of a pre-event poll sent to delegates. It was really interesting to see that 40% of the attendees plan to start selling into new geographic markets within the next 12 months. That’s great news and supports our belief that growth in new international markets is one way organizations are trying to offset a possible economic slowdown in their core markets.
From there I discussed the impact that Agile development has on software localization. It was interesting to see that 90% of attendees said that they start localizing their software before code freeze, with half the attendees already taking a more agile approach with frequent localization updates during development. There are trade-offs to consider when doing more frequent localization drops, but SDL Passolo Collaboration Edition is designed to help optimize this process. Bottom line, it’s good to see how localization in an Agile environment is bringing development and localization teams closer together.
SDL Passolo Collaboration Edition
Next up was Achim Herrmann discussing SDL Passolo Collaboration Edition in more detail. More frequent drops of software to be localized often means more work. SDL Passolo Collaboration Edition delivers bundles of files via an FTP server, removing the need for a dedicated application or database server. This brings down the cost of hardware and eases communications across organizational boundaries, and tools are provided to allow the Project Manager to keep track of where translation is taking place. The localization project can be updated at any time, without waiting for existing translation tasks to complete.
Visual Localization in Action!
It was wonderful to hear Henk Boxman of Boxma IT and Jens Lippman of Lippmann and Linzer GmbH talk about their work at Roche Diagnostics. Jens outlined the challenges that Roche has in providing global solutions across hardware and software, and the services related to both.
Roche approached this challenge by developing a common platform for all their applications. This separates the business logic from the presentation logic – a good approach to Internationalization (i18n), i.e. building software that can be easily localized. We then saw a demonstration of how the Roche software can be visually localized by translators. As strings are translated, they are visible in the user interface of the software. Roche also makes extensive use of pseudo translation, which allows engineers to test the effects of a translation on the user interface. This not only helps engineers accommodate different character sets and longer strings, but also highlights the areas of the product where the presentation logic has not been appropriately separated.
SimShip of Sinking Ship?
Moving on Florian Sachse discussed the challenges and opportunities associated with simultaneous shipment (sim ship) of product into multiple locales. The session took a balanced view of the advantages and disadvantages of this approach. Florian also discussed best practices, such as carefully defining your Tier 1 languages that you localize into during your beta phase, your Tier 2 languages that you support on release and your Tier 3 languages that follow later on. This is exactly where SDL Passolo can help organizations to build software that can be localized quickly and can enter new markets at a much lower cost.
Florian concluded by highlighting why Agile is such a good way of developing software, and particularly localized software, using the adage “fail early”. Developing and localizing in this way enables engineers and localization teams to work together, finding issues before they become expensive to fix.
Next up, Achim Hermann returned to tell us more about the connections that SDL Passolo has with the wide and varied products in the SDL technology stable, such as SDL Trados Studio, SDL MultiTerm, SDL TM Server and SDL Translation Management System. SDL Passolo is incredibly easy to connect to other SDL applications at all levels of the localization supply chain.
Tips and Tricks
To complete the day Florian returned for some hands on tips and tricks for using SDL Passolo. He used the Localization of .Net applications as an example, showing clever features such as “Flip Layout” which is useful when translating for bi-directional languages.
To find out more, you can watch the whole event again, download SDL Passolo or catch up with Achim at Localization World, Santa Clara USA on 10-12 October, and with both Florian and Achim at Tekom in Wiesbaden Germany, on 18-20 October.