AW: Internationalizing screen shots for customizable software

Subject: AW: Internationalizing screen shots for customizable software
From: "Ternes, Andreas" <A -dot- Ternes -at- sps-pressen -dot- de>
To: "'techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 1999 11:00:23 +0100

Rob Steiner wrote:
"Since the software will be customized/translated to the customer's
needs/language once it's delivered, we can not get access to the translated
software to get the translated screen shots.
So my big question is: How do we allow for multi-language screen shots in
our internationalized documentation when the software will be customized
when it's delivered to the customer?"

Hi Rob,
it looks as if your situation is similar to the one I am in.
The company I work for produces hydraulic presses for metal forming. The
visualization of the machine control contains about 50 different screens (in
German) which will be customized during installation of the presses. (The
visualization is in German because the programmers must work with it, and
they can't do it when the screens are translated first.)
After installation is finished they change the screens to the translated
What I do is to put the German screens into my preliminary operation manual
first (to give the operator a first look of the screens). The final version
of the OM then contains the translated screens.
This works in the field of special purpose machines, where every press is
different. If you are talking about software and instructions used by more
than one customer, it is different. But I don't know what products your
company sells. And I don't know if your manual is translated for each single
customer or for all customers in one country? If it is a single
documentation for each customer it might work to deliever the documents with
English screens first, and later change them in the documents. Most
customers worldwide will understand enough English to understand the screens
in their original version.
If you have more questions, don't hesitate to ask.

Greetings from Germany

Andreas Ternes
Technical Writer fon.: 02151/895-904
Siempelkamp Pressen Systeme fax.:02151/895-995
Mevissenstr.65 a -dot- ternes -at- sps-pressen -dot- de
D-47803 Krefeld

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