One of our core values at Smartling is “good today, perfect tomorrow.” We apply that to every aspect of our work here—including improving our own work.
Language isn’t static. In 2006, it took 14 languages to reach the majority of the global online audience. Now, it takes 30 or more. Languages themselves change, too—just last year, Merriam-Webster added 500+ words to the English dictionary. Technology, slang, and pop culture create new words and change the meaning of old ones. Different languages borrow from one another, like French (ballet) or Danish (hygge) terms molding into English ones.
As languages change, so too do translation and localization best practices. To stay up-to-date on the industry, here are our team’s favorite blogs:
Our Favorite Blogs on Translation and Localization
Translation is so much more than changing from native language to target language, or plugging in a few phrases in Google Translate, or asking a multilingual employee and hoping for the best.
It’s a complicated industry—and there’s always something new to learn, whether you’re translating Polish or Portuguese.
For the latest updates on all things localization, you won’t go wrong with these resources:
Slator publishes news, analysis, and features about the translation industry from clients, vendors, and academia. They also publish more in-depth research reports, including their flagship report, the Slator Language Service Provider LSPI, which ranks the world’s translation, localization, interpreting, and language technology companies.
While some of their more in-depth research reports cost money, we’ve found their free resources are well-written and provide grounding across the industry. This recent article about Netflix’s dub and subtitle process is just one example of in-depth reporting on the future of localization.
If we have a question about localization or want to know what’s going on across the technology space, Slator is where we turn to.
Blogger @Yolocalizo, aka Miguel Sepulveda, writes regularly about localization trends, how to approach website localization, and his experiences in his 20+ years in the industry. A global localization manager at King (the developers behind the uber-popular game Candy Crush Saga) knows a thing or two about building a program that emphasizes translation quality.
Many of our team members subscribe to his monthly updates, which continually deconstructs industry news and localization best practices in a way that’s easy to understand. He often includes colorful infographics and other designed materials, like this post on how localization is a key part of your user experience.
An avid reader, Miguel regularly reviews business books, giving our team plenty of recommendations to keep learning. If you’re curious about what he has to say, listen to him on our podcast, the Loc Show.
3. Born to Be Global
Nataly Kelly, VP of Localization at HubSpot, started blogging online at Born to Be Global back in 2016. Obsessed with technology from the early age of search engines, she now writes about the intersection of language and technology on her blog and publications like Harvard Business Review.
Born to Be Global is a great place to start if you want to dive into the details of how to build a localization program from the ground up, what bias looks like with localization, and what translation looks like for companies juggling twenty or more language pairs. She also includes recordings of webinars and other talks so you can watch and listen, too.
4. Hristina Racheva
Hristina Racheva, Head of Localization at Skyscanner, blogs regularly on social media (primarily LinkedIn) about her career learnings, how to land a job in localization, stakeholder management, and personal branding. After eight years in the industry, she recently launched career coaching services for anyone looking to land their dream job in translation or localization.
She also offers personalized 1:1 workshops on specific topics that can help you dive into specifics for your career path.
Several teammates are members of the Globalization and Localization Association (GALA), which connects language professionals worldwide. They offer resources, events, and career advice that cuts across industries—according to their website, 15% of members are universities, 15% are B2C companies, and 70% are language services and tech companies like Smartling—and helps set key best practices.
If you’re looking for a comprehensive database of information on different languages, language-based careers, or project management, becoming a GALA member is an excellent educational investment. Many of their articles are offered for free on their website.
Many of our translators based in the U.S. are members of the American Translators Association (ATA), which offers one of the industries’ most respected translation credentials and certifications. If you’re on the translation side of the house, receiving your ATA certification is a huge career milestone. Their resources are one of the best for growing your translation career.
If you’re just getting started with translation or have always wanted to become a translator, check out their online or in-person events. Their “for newcomers” section is particularly comprehensive.
A think tank specializing in localization and translation, TAUS is the place to go if you’re looking to sharpen your technical skills or learn more about working directly with AI, machine learning, or data as it relates to language processing. They offer data services like cleaning, anonymization, annotation, and clustering. They provide training on those subjects as well.
Our engineering team subscribes to their blog to stay up-to-date on internationalization and coding best practices, especially when it comes to machine translation and working with technology.
Okay, we couldn’t resist our blog on this list. We cover a wide range of localization and translation topics like: how to work with professional translation services; how to find high-quality freelancers; the most common challenges when translating languages like Arabic or Spanish from English; an overview of our translation tools and how best to use them, and so much more.
We also offer more in-depth resources, like downloadable eBooks or tools like our sample RFP to help you wherever you are in your localization journey.
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