Making Translation Simpler
Lots of conferences and networking in the translation industry this month with the TAUS User Conference, tcworld and LocWorld events among others. One small trend: the emergence of what might be called “translation analytics” – i.e. business intelligence about the people and processes involved in translation. The Luxembourg provider Wordbee released a new business analytics module for their Enterprise Translation Management System, and discussions among TAUS service vendors focussed partly on the need for more data on the translation process so as to optimise anything from technology to translator selection. This is only natural as analytics of all kinds become part of the Zeitgeist.
When it comes to operations, the trend is to simplify workflows to reduce process time in the production chain. TranslateKarate for example delivered a super-simple online workflow, TAUS has launched a stripped-down API to streamline translation content exchange after inheriting the mantle of standards watchdog earlier last year. Meanwhile the Irish start-up KantanMT launched a BetaIV version of its cloud engine as part of its continuous development agenda, in a bid to attract more customers before the paying service kicks in. And Kilgray received a Deloitte Award as one of the leading young tech companies in Hungary, rewarding its insistence on building a user ecosystem bottom-up together with its customers.
In a global language learning market worth $58.2B in 2011 (including individual and enterprise services), it is surprising how little serious innovation news swims into our focus. So it was good to hear that Irish start-up RendezVu received an EC seal of approval for its ExamSpeak application to help learners prepare for exams.
In another move, the online language learning busuu with over 25M users in 200 countries has won another round of funding and is moving to London to stay closer to their VC partners and HarperCollins publisher – and perhaps benefit from the positive tech-biz vibrations in the UK.
AABBY has meanwhile released a set of Lingvo Dictionaries for iOS which offer learning friendly information and pronunciation aids for smart phone users.
In a big data world, it’s also worth noting that the Swiss firm Education First has published its latest report that rates countries on their proficiency in speaking English. Although it is obvious why English is the language of choice for this exercise, it would be interesting to have data about proficiency in other languages. And to fine-tune the analysis below the level of countries (too many are almost neck and neck) to other useful demographics.