Early this year, I had the absolute delight and pleasure to guest lecture at Stanford University for students enrolled in “Translation Matters” with Cintia Santana. Cintia works as a Senior Lecturer in the Division of Literatures, Cultures and Languages at Stanford University.
With an academic background in the 19th and 20th Century Spanish literature, particularly in the cultural relationships between Spain and the United States, her research interests include transatlantic and translation studies along with representations of immigration in contemporary Spanish literature.
We reviewed various aspects of the Localization industry and what role Translation plays in this industry and its effects on the global marketplace. We reviewed the types of clients that might require such services, what mechanisms are used by companies to determine the quality of their translation as well as the potential issues that sometime arise during the localization process. Students were encouraged to ask questions and inquired regarding terminology that might be culturally inappropriate to translate and who ultimately owns this decision. We looked at various misnomers that sometime come up in an effort to either save money or take shortcuts by companies such as using one dialect for another (FRC for FRF, PT for BOP, etc.). We discussed how translation, although the most important step in the overall localization process, is just one step, preceded and followed by numerous other production steps to guarantee that the quality is never compromised.
Quality Management was one of the main points, or more specifically, Linguistic Review Services, which make up a percentage of VistaTEC revenue. This typically goes hand in hand with translation but takes it one step further. What if you would like to determine how good your quality really is? Who do you go to? Who has a background in linguistics for a specific language, understands the grammar rules like an English college professor?
This is why VistaTEC have a professional team working through it. Most of our clients consider Linguistic Review Services to have a second set of eyes, improve overall their quality, quantify results, reduce linguistic rework which allows us to determine language issues and resolve them upstream, and the most important is because cost and time required is minimal.
We discussed the importance of ISO accreditation and how this is used as a baseline for quality standards within an organization. A few students were very interested in the quality and feasibility of using Machine Translation as part of the overall localization process. We briefly discussed where this technology is at this time but how far it has yet to come. Lastly, we touched on the commodity side of the localization industry and how price and overall cost can sometimes drive the decisions taken by some of our clients.
Jeff is the Director of Sales for VistaTEC in the west coast of the Unites States. He has held many roles throughout his 10+ years in the localization industry. Jeff has presented at multiple Localization World conference events and was involved during the pioneering stages of XLIFF implementation at the client level. He holds a BBA in international business from Schiller International University and is fluent in English, French, with a working knowledge of German. Jeff is heavily involved in nonprofit work for various San Diego-based organizations such as the YMCA and the San Diego Crew Classic.