Software Localization: What’s Under the Hood?

Category: Software Translation

In today’s business world, the “software” portion of software localization covers a huge range of possible platforms and applications. You might say where the software runs in the world is as important as what it will run on, which is why we begin with a clear understanding whether a project is for a web, desktop, client-server, firmware, or mobile environment.

So how far does software localization extend? Obviously the language translation element is dominant, but in interactive environments, language has far-reaching effects.

This includes developing a multilingual glossary, parsing and translating text in the application resource files, leveraging any existing translations into an updated source version, resizing controls, assigning hotkeys, executing builds, and testing builds on localized operating systems. And what about supporting materials? Help systems and user documentation are also key components to a successful launch.

Knowing what to do and the best ways to do it are two sides of the same coin, which is where our process comes into play. Real-world experience guides our approach.

We begin software localization projects with a thorough assessment of the application files. A best practice we employ in any localization process is the elimination of file transformations wherever possible. This practice improves turn-around time and minimizes effort and cost associated with your project. To ensure our process follows this philosophy, we support a wide range of native file types and the tools they’re associated with. (For the true software geeks out there, you can get a closer list at our most commonly used file types here.)

With file analysis and project preparation complete, we perform translation and editing, in-context review, and work through coordinated bug tracking and correction to ensure a perfectly-running localized application, ready for release. The quality assurance process in particular is where we depend on rigorous reviews to identify and correct functional, linguistic and cosmetic issues.

Everyday we bring companies to new language markets. No matter how complex your software localization project may be, we’re interested and ready to help you reach your goals anywhere in the world.

Photo Credit: Neil Kremer