MAGAZINE

#207 – September

Faiza Sultan

Everyone has challenges to overcome while pursuing their career. It’s rare that anything worth pursuing comes easily. But Faiza Sultan may be a bit more familiar with facing hardship than most.

Arriving in America as a refugee with almost nothing to her name, she quickly established herself as a hardworking and reliable linguist, which set the foundation for a career of impressive achievements. Through it all, she never lost touch with her roots or the love of literature and art that attracted her to language in the first place.

We go over it all in our conversation with Faiza, so let’s get right to it.

POSTEDITING

L

anguage is among the easiest of human innovations to take for granted. It’s such an everyday part of our lives that we rarely take the time to consider what life would be like without it. At its core, language is a tool — a tool with a spiritual and artistic power, yes, but a tool nonetheless. And like any tool, it can be used for self-empowerment.

This month’s profile on Faiza Sultan is a great example of that power. Arriving in the United States as a refugee with only $20 to her name, her talents as a linguist took her from one opportunity to another, paving the way for her to open her own business and work with some of the biggest companies in the world.

We hope MultiLingual magazine readers will find her story inspiring. And we hope you’ll find the rest of the magazine just as helpful and entertaining. This month, our columns cover the range from life-sciences translation to workforce readiness for the future, plus another reflection on the power of language by Tim Brookes. We also have how-to guides covering the use of reviews for quality assurance in game localization and a deep dive into the nature and origins of place names, just to name a few inclusions.

Have anything to say or an article you wish to contribute? Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, and as always, have a great month. 

PROFILE

Faiza Sultan. Pursuing the American dream

Interview by Cameron Rasmusson

Everyone has challenges to overcome while pursuing their career. It’s rare that anything worth pursuing comes easily. But Faiza Sultan may be a bit more familiar with facing hardship than most.
Arriving in America as a refugee with almost nothing to her name, she quickly established herself as a hardworking and reliable linguist, which set the foundation for a career of impressive achievements. Through it all, she never lost touch with her roots or the love of literature and art that attracted her to language in the first place.
We go over it all in our conversation with Faiza, so let’s get right to it.

Andrea Ballista. Voicing the unvoiced

By Cameron Rasmusson

Audio is one of the most essential ingredients to a truly immersive digital experience. From music to sound design to voice-acting performances, audio brings us into the center of the story and promotes empathy with characters and their plights. But the road toward the robust digital-audio tools we enjoy today had its share of twists and turns.
Andrea Ballista has been a part of that evolution from the early days of the technology. And today, he’s still on the forefront, this time in the exciting field of AI-generated audio. He spoke to us recently about his career and some of the exciting technologies in development.

TECH

Language Technology in the Year 2022. Big products, great ideas, but still a lack of common standards

By Arthur Wetzel

The Nimdzi Language Technology Atlas 2022 comprehensively assesses the language-technology landscape, as it does every year. It is a comprehensive, free resource — which you can find attached with this issue — that maps hundreds of language-technology solutions worldwide. This Atlas compiles exhaustive information that Nimdzi uses to guide its clientele through complex technology selection, deployment, and migration processes. For most people in the industry, this Atlas is essential.

LIST

Top 5: Localization Catbassadors

By Óscar Curros

When a couple of friends asked me if I’d like to adopt Tomcat, I hesitated. At the same time, I couldn’t resist the jungle’s call. I was all alone at Interkultural, tired of playing the boss role in front of the mirror. Solo-preneurship had not been fun for quite a while. I needed an assistant to train and tell what to do.
I was naïve enough to believe I could do that to a feline.
How could I resist his spell when he came by my chair, touched me with his paw, and looked me in the eyes? The cute little tiger had a hypnotic look that instantly consumed my attention.

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HOW TO

How to Analyze Game Localization Quality Using Reviews

By Dmitry Antonov and Tatyana Veryasova

It’s pretty obvious that localization affects player reviews. A bad translation can lead to bad reviews, and great work can, of course, win high praise from gamers. In turn, all of this feedback can be really useful. Reviews are important information sources to assess and improve the quality for any game localization professional.

FEATURE

What’s in a name? Everything and nothing, all at once

By Andrew Warner

After countless nights spent in high school scrolling through obscure Wikipedia pages on topics like the “Phonological history of Spanish coronal fricatives” and working my way through problem sets from the International Linguistics Olympiad, I enrolled in a historical linguistics class while studying at UCLA. In large part, this was to satisfy the requirements for my bachelor’s degree, but it was also one of the first times where the trivial knowledge I’d acquired digging my way down these linguistic rabbit holes actually proved to be useful.

COLUMNS

INUKTITUT Inuit

The Missing Language Syllabus

By Tim Brookes

Judging by the good folks I’ve met at LocWorld conferences (Montreal, Barcelona, Seattle, San Jose), people working in the language industry come from a linguistics background or a computing background. There’s also the rare twofer breed who have both skillsets, but they are so far beyond my comprehension I just salute them and make for the buffet.
This degree of intimidation might be explained by the fact that, despite being in charge of a tiny but ambitious nonprof-it working in the language world, I have absolutely no train-ing in linguistics or computing, and do most of my work with a set of chisels. People come by my stand and ask in bewilder-ment, “Is that…wood?”

INUKTITUT Inuit

Are you future ready?

By Sophie Solomon

Are you familiar with this proverb: “God, grant me the serenity to accept things I cannot change, the courage to change things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
I don’t know about you, but it sure feels that the last three years were meant to assert the truth of this proverb. Whether or not you have an aversion to change and unpredictability, or you go where the wind blows, the lack of control and uncertainty over these past few years has been trying for all. So much so, that mental health continues to make the headlines. Many corporations not only talk openly about it, but they also provide mental health-specific benefits to their workforce. No wonder that in its latest research, Gartner named wellbeing a key metric in the future of work. It doesn’t matter how well-equipped we may have thought we were; nothing could have predicted the past three years.

INUKTITUT Inuit

Secrets to Success in Life Sciences Localization; Training, tools, and subject matter expertise

By Mark Shriner

Welcome back to The Lab where take a look at what’s cooking in life sciences localization.
Due to the rapid growth of the medical device, pharmaceutical, and healthcare industries, there’s been an explosion of content output from these industries — and that content often requires localization. Many language service providers (lsps), project managers, and linguists view life sciences localization as an attractive market. That said, there are some unique challenges for high-quality and competitive life sciences translation services.

ANALYSIS

The Golden Rule of Global Financial Communication. Language really matters.

By Christophe Djaouani, Alexandra Jarvis, and Jean-François Poulnais

We joke about the preponderance of jargon in the financial services industry, and I dare say a glance through the rest of this publication will provide a few examples, often abbreviated into snappy acronyms. Yet each term, description, and acronym carries meaning that may be codified in law or in accepted local usage. In financial services, as in any other highly regulated sector, language really matters.

WHITE PAPER

Software Code Internationalization
Self-Healing with AI

In preparing products for global implementation, developers need to internationalize software code. Developers are not always fully versed in all potential internationalization issues, and thus, they are often overlooked. Static code analysis tools are popular in the industry to get the job done, but they have their own limitations.

BUYER’S GUIDE

BUYER’S GUIDE