The recording from our December 13th webinar, “How Sun takes Brands and Solutions to the Global Marketplace” is now available here.
Many thanks to Kristen Harris, .Sun Content Management Engineering Manager, for an excellent discussion of Sun Microsystems’ Starlight Platform for content and translation management. The companion case study is available here.
Our informal poll during the webinar on the most significant business drivers for providing localized content to customers yielded some interesting results:
Brand management and presence in emerging markets (examples given were India and China) were primary drivers for the audience. It’s not surprising to see emerging markets in the number 2 position since the U.S. market is essentially saturated for many industries. It’s also validating to note brand management in the number 1 position. Much of our webinar discussion focused the value of content within the global customer experience. Clearly, that’s not a “foreign concept” for companies focused on improving multinational revenue profiles. The significance of consistent and contextual content was front and center for this audience, as it should be.
A quick reminder to mark your calendar, and to submit your speaking proposals before the upcoming deadlines:
Gilbane San Francisco – http://gilbanesf.com/
April 10-12, 2007, Palace Hotel
Call for Papers Deadline: January 3rd, 2007
Gilbane Washington DC – http://gilbanedc.com/
June 5-7, 2007, Reagan Building
Call for Papers Deadline: January 15th, 2007
Join The Gilbane Group, SDL International and Interwoven to learn how Sun Microsystems used a global information management solution to deliver product information, support services, and java.com information in many languages to deliver an enhanced customer experience.
Date: 13th December, 2006
Time: 8:30 Pacific, 11:30 Eastern, 16:30 GMT, 17:30 Central Europe
Duration: 1 hour
With so much of our news focused on the Boston conference the last couple of weeks, you might have missed the publication of a new case study and a new white paper. Both are by Senior Analyst Leonor Ciarlone, and as usual, both are free. The case study is “The Global Customer Experience: Sun Microsystems’ Vision for the Participation Age”, and is the topic of today’s webinar. The white paper is “Eliminating the Fear Factor: Creating a Culture of Compliance“, and a recording of the webinar covering this is available here.
It has been interesting to note that even inside the US, more and more languages start appearing in various services. Spanish is the obvious example, but at the Gilbane Boston conference we heard that e.g. a New England healthcare provider needs to think about providing information in Vietnamese and in Russian. The old saying “You can always buy in your own language, but you must sell in your customer’s language” still holds true.
Although English has become the universal second language, people still feel more comfortable dealing in their own native language. Maybe the next generation will be different (although I guess that has always been the expectation of the previous generation) and will communicate mainly with smileys – but I believe that languages will not go away.
One could assume that in the European Union with its plethora of official languages there would be a lot of language tools available. Well, there is e.g. Eurodicautom, a multilingual and searchable term bank which includes about 5.5 million entries in 48 subject fields. It continues to be available, but it is currently not updated, as it is being moved into a new database – and the latest news about it are from 2003. So one can only hope that the migration will be completed soon and the updating can continue, as new words appear in languages continuously. Just think about “truthiness”, which was chosen as Merriam-Webster’s word of the year in 2006.
There are several other multilingual general and industry-specific dictionaries available in the web, such as the European multilingual environmental glossary at
http://glossary.eea.europa.eu/EEAGlossary/. Another example is the Microsoft multilingual terminology at http://www.microsoft.com/globaldev/tools/MILSGlossary.mspx. Googling e.g. with “multilingual glossaries” or “multilingual dictionaries” brings a lot of hits to various resources.
The thing is, multilingual content management and multilingual searches start from good multilingual terminology. There will be a lot of work needed in that area, both in general and in industry- or even in company-specific dictionaries. I will follow up on this topic later.