Internationalization and multiple source bases

Subject: Internationalization and multiple source bases
From: avobert -at- twh -dot- nbg -dot- de (Alexander Von_obert)
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: 25 Jun 00 21:07:01 +0000


* Antwort auf eine Nachricht von ghaas -at- selectica -dot- com an All am 23.06.00

gg> Still, there is more consistent text than variant text across
gg> the four documents, so any edit made to one paragraph would need to be
gg> made to at least four.

gg> My solution will involve using
gg> - conditional text for the difference between the two versions,
gg> - FrameMaker variables for the name differences between C and
gg> COM varieties, and
gg> - text inserts for repeated paragraphs that occur multiple
gg> times within a doc.

gg> My concern is with respect to internationalization. Can translators
gg> into European and Asian languages handle such a pile?

You might need someone with quite some Framemaker know-how anyway. If you do
it in a strictly consistant way and hand over an exact description you could
find translators that can do it successfully. It should not be harder that to
translate resource files.

But don't forget all those other problems:

- The translators need terminology and the exact wording in the GUI.

- Many languages need quite some more letters than English to express
something - reserve enough white space (especially on the screens!).

- You might need to localize quite some more things: Lengths in cm instead of
feet and inches, weights in kg and not in pounds or stones, the decimal point
in different places for different currencies and many more things.

Greetings from Germany,

Alexander von Obert, Urbanstr. 2, 90480 Nuernberg, Germany
Free-lance technical writer (electronics, software)
Voice +49-911-403903, Fax -403904, BBS -403905 (FIDO 2:2490/1719)
avobert -at- techwriter -dot- de

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