Why Localization/Internationalization is different from Translation?
Plenty of people and businesses have felt the difference between the two ever since online businesses try to be known worldwide. Better understanding on this topic has a big impact not only to gain a specific target number of users or clients, but also on having new users felt their importance by knowing their specific needs when it comes to their languages.
Many have discovered that FREE online translation services (like Google Translate, Babelfish, etc.) are not totally reliable since it’s machine generated, and that translation work are considered still meant for human beings. Online translation could be reliable though only when looking for some synonyms or antonyms, especially when you’re trying to figure-it-out a context of an specific word for a specific sentence; or, when you’re trying to generate non-English characters. It’s helpful but translators should know the limitations when using these.
Many have mistakenly thought that getting the something translated is just as simple as knowing your second language. They are wrong, though.
As you know language evolve depending on the country or people who are using it. There are ways other countries say or write it versus the way the native country use it. For example, let’s say we use one of most admired languages in the world, French. More or less 29 countries use it as their official language, exceptionally France (where it all begun) and Canada (Quebec region) are among the basis of translation.
According to some articles and most translators I’ve spoken with, there’s a notable difference in grammar usage that caught the attention of France during the 1990’s, particularly when dealing with words in feminine form. Add to that difference between the informal and formal. Like when we say the word “now”, France say it as maintenant but in Quebec they say it as astheure.
That’s where localization comes in.
Localization and Internationalization target the proper usage of a certain language of a certain target audience. It was not just simple translation, but an intensive one, because the translators need to neutralize the language depending on the country it targets.
How to search a translator?
If you are wondering how to choose translators, it’s easy.
In my personal opinion, I’d always prefer someone who studies the different usage of the language; otherwise, I would choose someone native but has an excellent background in grammar and vocabulary. You can set their expectations about your target audience and how would like them to translate it.
Make sure you hire at least not lower than 2 translators with equal expertise, so they can proofread, discuss and edit each other’s works.