Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Software localisation as a first job
Thread poster: Katrine McMillan
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
Jun 7, 2008

Hello !

Recently, I have been contacted by an agency specialising in software localisation. Actually, they want some information concerning my experience and my work rate in this field. I have no experience at all in software localisation. All I know is that you have to bear in mind the local differences between the source language and the target language (for example, currency, time...) to render them in the proper way and that you have strings to translate and that therefore codes are characters are to be respected: IS THAT RIGHT ??

My questions are the following:

Even if I have no experience in software localisation, is it all the same possible to start right away?? Do I need an intensive training before or can I learn little by little and accept some little jobs in localisation for a start? Can I have an agreement with this agency as a novice at localisation?

I know that there are several interesting localisation software tools. Is it up the agency to choose them or must I buy one/some myself?

Supposing I was eventually offered a small job in software localisation, how much should I charge per hour? (or per character??) What work rate can I/they expect? (all I can tell you is that I have Trados 7.0). What main softwares/tools do I need? What must I bear in mind when asking this agency about the working conditions?

Thank you for giving me some advice !

Katrine


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:35
English to Dutch
+ ...
Book Jun 7, 2008

There's a book you ought to read:
A Practical Guide to Localisation, by Bert Esselink.

It will answer most of your questions and give you a good idea of what you need to know.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:35
English to German
+ ...
A tip Jun 7, 2008

Different operation systems use a different jargon (Mac, Windows, Linux..)

Try to stay concise and avoid exceeding the existing length of the text, especially with buttons. If the agency is good they will provide you with the number of characters allowed. Try to get screenshots of the existing software. CAT-tools are handy when it comes to consistency, however they don't make a translation better in quality. Personally, I prefer to write directly in the desired format. This way I have total control and everything will fall into place automatically.

You picked a tough one for your first job.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
No experience Jun 7, 2008

If you have no experience at all in software localization it is unlikely that they will choose you. And in the unlikely event they did, it would be unprofessional to attempt something you do not know how to do.

Study up on it first and then try.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
You must be right Jun 7, 2008

Henry Hinds wrote:

If you have no experience at all in software localization it is unlikely that they will choose you. And in the unlikely event they did, it would be unprofessional to attempt something you do not know how to do.

Study up on it first and then try.


All in all, I think you are right. That's why I am going to study the book that Margreet talked about (thank you!) first ...Of course I intended to be honest with my customer, I was just wondering how tough it was and if I could do some small jobs in that field first...


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
Thank-you Jun 7, 2008

[quote]Nicole Schnell wrote:

Different operation systems use a different jargon (Mac, Windows, Linux..)

Try to stay concise and avoid exceeding the existing length of the text, especially with buttons. If the agency is good they will provide you with the number of characters allowed. Try to get screenshots of the existing software. CAT-tools are handy when it comes to consistency, however they don't make a translation better in quality. Personally, I prefer to write directly in the desired format. This way I have total control and everything will fall into place automatically.

Thank-you very much for these useful informations! You have been very helpful.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
Good idea Jun 7, 2008

Margreet Logmans wrote:

There's a book you ought to read:
A Practical Guide to Localisation, by Bert Esselink.

It will answer most of your questions and give you a good idea of what you need to know.


In fact I have already heard about this book, so I am decided to buy it this time! Thank-you.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 19:35
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Have a look here Jun 7, 2008

Hi Katrin!

Margreet Logmans wrote:

There's a book you ought to read:
A Practical Guide to Localisation, by Bert Esselink.

It will answer most of your questions and give you a good idea of what you need to know.


You might want to have a look here:

http://books.google.com.ar/books?id=JwGUS1Bt36YC&dq=practical%20guide%20to%20localisation&pg=PP1&ots=1knB482hFC&sig=MHfIYKkprwqI7_x269Jz3_VOwTA&hl=es&prev=http://www.google.com.ar/search?hl=es&q=Practical+Guide+to+Localisation&btnG=Buscar+con+Google&sa=X&oi=print&ct=title&cad=one-book-with-thumbnail#PPA65,M1

Regards,
Marina


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Tobia P
English to Italian
other localization resources Jun 8, 2008

You might find this course material from Kent State University quite useful:

You might also want to check the following Microsoft resources. Whether you like them or not, they have set some standards that those working in localization might need to be aware of:


Tobia

PS It look slike the BBcode adds a space to the URLs that point to a specific page, breaking them, so I'll paste them here:
http://appling.kent.edu/ResourcePages/Courseware/Localize/Default.htm
http://www.microsoft.com/globaldev/getwr/steps/localization/loc_summary.mspx


Direct link Reply with quote
 

John Jory  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:35
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Consider this one Jun 8, 2008

One of my customers asked me to use the following tool for translating an application. It works like dream

http://www.apptranslator.com/


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 00:35
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
I never thought about it Jun 8, 2008

I got different software localisation jobs up from start in my career as translator and I never thought there were special problems before I encountered them. The first job was done in a DOS-application the customer provided, no possibility to use any other tool.
The biggest practical problem is to make sure the software strings are the same in the software as in the user manual. If they give you first the software strings to translate, mostly in Excel, you have no idea what the software really does and what the best translation alternative is. If you translate first the manual, you often have to shorten the strings later when it comes to translating them in Excel.
A special problem concerns languages, that follow different rules, like Finnish. The customer mostly think sentences can be split at liberty and you just put a variable somewhere, when in fact the variable should obey the grammatical rules also. But this problem you don't have in FR-EN.
Regards
Heinrich


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 19:35
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My experience Jun 8, 2008

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

I got different software localisation jobs up from start in my career as translator and I never thought there were special problems before I encountered them...

... The biggest practical problem is to make sure the software strings are the same in the software as in the user manual. If they give you first the software strings to translate, mostly in Excel, you have no idea what the software really does and what the best translation alternative is. If you translate first the manual, you often have to shorten the strings later when it comes to translating them in Excel.

Regards
Heinrich


This is my experience too.
The best approach is to have the Excel file and the manual in the source language, but usually when the client sends the Excel file with the software strings the manual hasn´t been written yet.
You can always ask for clarification when the meaning of the string is not clear.
Some clients send a third column with an explanation of what that command does, this is of great help.
I know there are special tools where you translate the buttons and menus directly in the software, but I´ve never been asked to use them.

Good luck
Marina


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 23:35
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Learn, then offer Jun 8, 2008

Henry Hinds wrote:

If you have no experience at all in software localization it is unlikely that they will choose you. And in the unlikely event they did, it would be unprofessional to attempt something you do not know how to do.

Study up on it first and then try.


This is exactly my way of thinking. Honesty as the first priority.

But maybe they take you on board if you are honest enough to say that you don't have experience but would love to learn. Localisation is not that very hard once you have been working for some months. After all, I don't think they will ask you to do engineering work, which is trickier. I started as a localiser with no experience in localisation some... er... 14 years ago. Oh my, I'm so old!!


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
Very interesting Jun 9, 2008

Tobia P wrote:

You might find this course material from Kent State University quite useful:

You might also want to check the following Microsoft resources. Whether you like them or not, they have set some standards that those working in localization might need to be aware of:


Tobia

PS It look slike the BBcode adds a space to the URLs that point to a specific page, breaking them, so I'll paste them here:
http://appling.kent.edu/ResourcePages/Courseware/Localize/Default.htm
http://www.microsoft.com/globaldev/getwr/steps/localization/loc_summary.mspx


Thank-you, I've just had a look at all this and it is obviously very helpful. Software localisation seems an extremely interesting field. I am going to spend the necessary time to study this all.





Direct link Reply with quote
 
Katrine McMillan  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:35
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks so much Jun 9, 2008

John Jory wrote:

One of my customers asked me to use the following tool for translating an application. It works like dream

http://www.apptranslator.com/



I've just downloaded it and it it seems to be a pretty good localization tool !! It guess it will be very helpful for my self training.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Software localisation as a first job

Advanced search






Wordfast Pro
Translation Memory Software for Any Platform

Exclusive discount for ProZ.com users! Save over 13% when purchasing Wordfast Pro through ProZ.com. Wordfast is the world's #1 provider of platform-independent Translation Memory software. Consistently ranked the most user-friendly and highest value

More info »
WordFinder
The words you want Anywhere, Anytime

WordFinder is the market's fastest and easiest way of finding the right word, term, translation or synonym in one or more dictionaries. In our assortment you can choose among more than 120 dictionaries in 15 languages from leading publishers.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search