Tag: localization unconference

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Localization Unconference: The First 10 Years

Language Industry News and Events

Localization Unconference (#LocUnconf) is 10 years old tomorrow!

The first Localization Unconference was hosted March 14, 2008 in Silicon Valley at Saleforce’s San Mateo location.

The original and first localization unconference logo from 2008

The original and first localization unconference logo from 2008

Unconference Strong

I am delighted to say that the event is still going strong and is now worldwide; organized by and attended by people interested in localization and related areas of our industry who want to meet and make connections by discussing hot topics or things that normally don’t get on the regular conference circuit agenda.

I can see from the Localization Unconference website now, for example, that there are already events planned for Toronto and Berlin in 2018. There have been many other events all over the world since 2008.

And, of course, the event is now part and parcel of the regular Localization World agenda. All thanks to an awesome team of passionate organizers driving it forward.

Guinness: Inspiration for the Unconference

I was inspired initially to reach out to others from a localization-related unconference section of Mashup Camp when it was held in Dublin’s Guinness Brewery in 2007. I blogged about my thoughts on MultiLingual’s blog (or Blogos as it was known then) and put the idea out there. The original blog is still there!

I’m indebted especially to Shawna Wolverton of Salesforce who also saw this opportunity to innovate a little bit in the localization meetup space and drove these sparks of ideas forward into the first event. That was a success but the event also later spread worldwide, mostly organized by locally-based, different volunteers.

Incidentally, I still have the 2007 Apple MacBook Pro 2.2 GHz 15-inch Core 2 Duo that I used at Mashup Camp (and shown in the blog post) and at the first Localization Unconference. Go different badges but they wear them just the same, as Aztec Camera would say.

Apple MacBook Pro from Mashup Camp and Localization Unconference still working!

My 2007 Apple MacBook Pro from Mashup Camp and Localization Unconference is still working! Those laptop stickers are upgraded regularly!

I also still have the original lunch voucher from the Salesforce-hosted event. I guess I didn’t eat at the event (I brought donuts from Chuck’s in Belmont, San Mateo if I recall correctly) with all the excitement.

Original Localization Unconference Lunch Voucher from Salesforce

Original Localization Unconference lunch voucher from Salesforce

I wonder is that voucher is still good for one lunch?

Whatever. The Localization Unconference is good for a lot more than one!

The next 10 years

So, here’s to more Localization Unconferences. And here’s to the power of the localization community, its volunteers, participants and the idea of self-enablement.

Stay tuned to the Localization Unconference website for more information and to MultiLingual Insights for reports on happenings, past and present.

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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#PinkTheValley: Localization Unconference Silicon Valley 2014

Language Industry News and Events

Keen followers of mine on Twitter (@localization) will know that I have been tweeting about the start of the Giro d’Italia in Ireland in May 2014. I’ve been using hashtag #pinkthecity. Well, now it’s time to #pinkthevalley

#pinkthecity hashtag seen on Dublin City Council street cleaning vehicle, advertising the start of the Giro in Ireland.

#pinkthecity hashtag seen on Dublin City Council street cleaning vehicle, advertising the start of the Giro in Ireland.

Yes, the Localization Unconference 2014 in Silicon Valley will also be in May. Friday9-MAY-2014 to be exact.

An equally glamorous and in-demand event for the seriously fit localization professional as the Giro is for cycling pros, fans, and wannabes, pink is the color of the #locunconf too. Not that there’s a dress code or anything…

It’s being held in the Salesforce offices in San Mateo, California.You can find out more on the Localization Unconference website.

See you there!

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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Localization Unconference – Canadian Edition

Language Industry News and Events, Localization Culture, Translation Technology

Oleksandr Pysaryuk (@alexpysaryuk) shares the insights on the organization, takeaways, and people from the Localization Unconference in Toronto. And what might be next…

On a chilly Ontario morning of January 23, Achievers office in Liberty Village in Toronto welcomed 43 localization enthusiasts to the first ever Localization Unconference in Canada.

Those other ICE (In Context Exact) Matches: Tweet about Strings Freezing

Those other ICE (In Context Exact) Matches

The rules were no prepared presentations, no selling and “there is no spoon”. We brought ideas and brainstormed, voted and discussed the usual suspects (machine translation, crowdsourcing, translation quality, localization and Agile), as well as new arrivals (developer tools for localization, distributed translation memories, identity theft in translation industry).

Localization UnConference topics

Localization UnConference topics

Localization Unconference topics reflect the energy and enthusiasm for inquiry in the industry

Some takeaways:

Translators need context, just a different kind.
Some translators don’t like to read long instructions but prefer to just translate, with screenshots. However you also need to provide detailed description of functionality and purpose, use cases, style guides, and be there for support. Enhance it all by giving translators your game to play or software to use while they localize it.

Developers like to be world-class.
Developers love and cherish their code. If you tell them that following i18n practices will only make their code world class, they salute i18n.

Learn to speak developer language.
Engineers talk system performance and security. Prove how exporting translatable text into XLIFF will strain the system less than CSV export, and your developers love you forever.

Measure translation quality differently.
Ask you customer directly how they feel about language quality. Or ask you sales team in the target region to evaluate quality, or even to localize your content. They will start feeling like they own the quality.

Your localization and your Agile are unique to you.
Reverberations of Agile are true for everyone: how to identify changes, when to start translating, how to manage small projects, how to deal with changing terminology, how to manage testing when things iterate, how to price small projects, do you need a localization stakeholder at every sprint meeting. You do? But what if your company has dozens of products with hundreds of features? Know your unique context: what the product development cycle is and how releases are planned in your organization, and then figure where localization fits best.

The unconference is keeping it pink and multilingual! I hear there might be the first unconference at the next OTTIAQ event in Montreal, in French. And one at Translation Forum Russia 2014, in Russian.

Special thanks to Teresa Marshall (@pschesi) for supporting the Localization Unconference in Canada and consulting the organizers.

Get to know the Localization Unconference Toronto faces here: https://www.dropbox.com/sc/f6zmbo6yixbufp9/nn0O7N-Qo3

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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Localization Unconference Silicon Valley 2013: Video is the New Document for L10n

Language Industry News and Events

Attended the Localization Unconference last week at the Salesforce offices in San Mateo, California. What a blast! About 120 attendees in all, a wide range of topics, and much style and flair in evidence made it a great day. I’ve been absent from the Silicon Valley event for a while, and it was a thrill to be back in person, meeting new people and seeing some older, more familiar faces too. No selling, no PowerPoint, and some very thorough and fair facilitation kept the energy and participation rocking throughout the day.

Much organization, style and glamour brought the Localization Unconference to life at the Salesforce offices. Thank you.

Much organization, style, and glamour brought the Localization Unconference to life at the Salesforce offices. Thank you. (Teresa Marshall of Salesforce and Scott Schwalbach of VistaTEC pictured).

Event feedback was positive and indeed, many attendees expressed the view that, based on all the love shared,  maybe all localization conferences should be run this way.

A screenshot of the main whiteboard with the topics up for discussion gives you an idea of what’s on Localization Unconference goers’ minds these days:

Localization Unconference topics: Video localization was up there.

Localization Unconference topics: Video localization was up there. So hot it was there twice.

Key takeaways for me from the day were:

  • Video localization is really up a hot topic. Lack of L10n-enabled tools is an issue, and it appears localizing these formats can be a very expensive business, especially when marketing material is involved (thankfully people nobody said “transcreation”). This stuff ain’t cheap to localize, and the process can be painful, but then so is localizing millions or words of unread documentation. At least the video format has traction with real users in today’s YouTubed learning world. Plus, community video plays its role too. “Video is the new document for localization” became almost a new industry meme on the day. Indeed.
  • There was a willingness to discuss the more eh, political dimensions of L10n, such as how the function gets disconnected from the rest of the business and how the function itself doesn’t always communicate well within itself across organization. Political dynamics, office politics, leadership, communications breakdown, “not invented here” syndrome, it was all going on. Perhaps it was me, but I detected an edgier view of our world, one that is a welcome counterbalance to the usual PowerPoint deck-driven PR puffery.
Worst cases? Disconnects? Surviving localization? What is this new realism that is upon us?

Worst cases? Disconnects? Surviving localization? What is this new realism that is upon us? Are we getting old?

  • The unconference community has tired of machine translation as a topic. Perhaps everyone has implemented their automated solutions beautifully, and it’s all a done deal. Or maybe, it’s all been heard before. Or, maybe it’s still mind-numbingly boring stuff best left to managers at paid-up posh translation automation events. YMMV as to which theory best applies here. Anyway, it wasn’t up for discussion. Using Microsoft Excel in localization would be a more realistic and relevant topic, I heard.
  • Pink is definitely the color to wear at these events. Pretty much, pink shirts are becoming the #LocUnConf  wellies equivalent seen at outdoor rock events in Europe. And rightly so.

At the end of the event donations collected in lieu of paying for the super lunch provided were taken. The Salesforce Foundation matched the amount and so, some 1,000 USD should be winging its way to Translators Without Borders soon.

Many thanks to the team of Salesforce, VistaTec, and anyothers who made this  event happen. And so, on to Localization World, London, 2013. See you there. At another Localization Unconference.

Keep it in pink, people.

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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Localization Unconference Happening at Localization World Seattle 2012

Language in Business, Language in the News, Language Industry News and Events

More than a passing acquaintance with the provence of the Localization Unconference, so I’ll give it a shameless plug. Go to it:

Localization Unconference on 19-Oct-2012 at Localization World in Seattle

Localization Unconference at Localization World in Seattle, 19-October-2012

Localization Unconference at Localization World in Seattle, 19-October-2012

Even if only just to see the shirt.

 

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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Agile Development and Localization: Has the Industry Lost the Ball in the Scrum?

Personalization and Design

I participated in an excellent session called “Authoring in an Agile Environment”, presented by Julio Vasquez at the Content Management Strategies DITA North America Conference 2010.  Julio has an excellent white paper on the subject too, available from the SDI website.

This got me thinking about how the localization process might fit into the world of agile product development, with its sprints and scrums, shortened innovation cycles, user reviews, and so on.

Much of what I have read about this is a no-brainer, relying on internationalization 101 and the obvious localization principle about starting localization as soon as a string is created, rather than when it is finished or released, so the text can be continually leveraged as the code changes. Nothing any different there for localization with an agile process compared to any other development process, if you know what you’re about.

However, I am not clear on how terminology can be created and approved within short, iterative cycles and how this fits into the notion of the user story, central to agile development. Can anyone advise me on processes and best practices in this regard? If we’re in the business of shipping competitive products and developing according to agile principles then terminology cannot be frozen up front. Nor can we sit on products for months before they’re released so someone can test localized terminology or whatever.

I raised this terminology issue at the Localization Unconference in Dublin, Ireland recently (see the Multilingual issue for July/August 2010), and, frankly, got nowhere with it. Seems like the localization industry is yet behind the curve on keeping up with development practises and, again, localization industry change needs to be driven from without. Perhaps you can provide some answers?

I should say I am attending a Scrummaster Certification course in Dublin, Ireland, later this month. Maybe I will be able to throw more light on the subject after that. In the meantime, feel free to comment!

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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Localization Unconference Dublin

Language Industry News and Events

I haven’t forgotten the Localization UnConference that was held in Dublin, Ireland, last month. Honest!

I’ve been so busy with international travel (it’s a hard life) that I haven’t had a chance to mention it on Blogos. Suffice to say for now, until I get back to the subject, that it was a super event, with the best part of 50 people attending. Congrats to Tony, Mark, Antoin, Martin and Henry for getting this together and to Vistatec Ireland for the premises. Watch out for an article on the subject in a forthcoming issue of Multilingual too.

Here’s to the next one!

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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End of PowerPoint Karaoke: The First Localization and Internationalization UnConference

Language Industry News and Events

Yes, the first Localization and Internationalization UnConference is being held next month in Silicon Valley. Very Web 2.0.

Building on the Mashup Camp experience, Ultan O’Broin of Oracle and Shawna Wolverton of Salesforce are bringing a localization and internationalization UnConference to Silicon Valley on March 14, 2008.

It’s free, with lunch and facilities kindly provided by Salesforce, and an electronic voting system will allow everyone to suggest topics and vote on topics for discussion. Final decisions on topics will be on the day of the conference.

It’s being held at the Salesforce San Mateo campus.

If you think this sounds like something you’d like to join then sign-up details are here.

Watch out for more blog coverage…

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Ultan Ó Broin (@localization), is an independent UX consultant. With three decades of UX and L10n experience and outreach, he specializes in helping people ensure their global digital transformation makes sense culturally and also reflects how users behave locally.

Any views expressed are his own. Especially the ones you agree with.

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