Published on March 7, 2014
Writing for a Global Audience March 2014 Larry Kunz firstname.lastname@example.org
About Me • More than 30 years in Tech Comm – – – – Software documentation Marketing Project management Consulting • Fellow, Society for Technical Communication (STC)
What We’ll Cover Today • Defining our terms • Writing for international audiences • Cultural considerations • Managing the project
Defining Our Terms Translation: Rewriting content in a different language Localization (L10N): (Re)designing a product for a specific international market Internationalization (I18N): Making a product suitable for localization in any market
How Translation Works • Machine translation – “Garbage In, Garbage Out” – Good content in, good translated content out • Translation Memory (TM) – Content must be identical • Human translation – Required to resolve ambiguity, inconsistency – As a writer, your task is to facilitate
Writing for an International Audience The writer must: • Use unambiguous sentence structure Before connecting the printer, on which you will create hard copies, begin the process by starting the setup program. Start the setup program. Then connect the printer. You will use the printer to create hard copies. • Find examples that are not culture-specific • Avoid using idioms
Writing for an International Audience (continued) The writer must: • Use consistent terms and phrases • Allow space for expansion • Include appropriate artwork The Global English Style Guide (John Kohl, SAS Press, 2008) http://www.globalenglishstyle.com/
Cultural Considerations • Artwork and graphics
Cultural Considerations • Learning styles • Country-specific factors • Typographical/layout preferences
Example: Website Design – China
Example: Website Design – USA
Other Considerations for the Writer • Rely on your editor • Respond promptly to questions from translators
Managing the Project 1. Be sure the plan includes time for I18N. 2. Focus on I18N from Day One. 3. Ensure that everyone has what they need.
Managing the Project The project manager must consider: • Scheduling • Budgeting • Defining the process • Communicating with writers and translators
Summary Writers: • Write for your audience – wherever they live • Consider different cultures • Work with editors and translators Project managers: • Plan carefully for I18N • Facilitate communication
Thank You Larry Kunz email@example.com
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