On the last days of spring 2019, the annual conference organized by the creators of one of the major CAT tools on the market, memoQ, was held in Budapest, Hungary. It was the 11th memoQfest, a welcoming event featuring much technology expertise, extraordinary venues (such as the Museum of Ethnography and the National Museum of Hungary), and of course, the inspiring localization crowd.
Though memoQfest is not a free event and also has sponsors (this year they were Plunet, XTRF, Consoltec, Globalese, Milengo, EDIMART, and easyling), it serves as more of an advertising project than an additional source of income for memoQ. Which makes sense because of at least two reasons:
Marketing budget can be easily spent on expensive advertising activities, but it may be wiser to spend it on building a friendly community of devoted users – which is exactly what memoQ has done with its conference.
Conferences can be beneficial both for the users and the developers. When creating software, as memoQ does, one can get very different performance indicators: the results highly depend on the motivation of different team members.
But if a company has public releases such as the one announced at the conference, or yearly progress reports which they share with the world, things start to work faster and more efficiently. Because of non-shifting release dates and obligations, the whole team has little choice but to increase its motivation to quickly find and build solutions and fix bugs.
What did memoQ offer in addition to these achievements well worth witnessing on their own? They stuffed their three-day event with:
When attending a conference such as the one thrown by a specific software developer, we are not necessarily aiming to sell our products. We might as well be looking for partners to explore and eventually build different integrations, or to share knowledge and exchange life hacks. MemoQfest offered plenty of opportunities for this.
So what did almost 250 attendees from 34 countries discuss in the couloirs? Some of the highlights were:
What Nimdzi Insights did at 11th memoQfest in addition to attending sessions, having meaningful conversations, and enjoying the Hungarian hospitality was sharing our own piece of technology – a comparison tool of terminology management systems. It is freely available at https://nimdzi.com/tbs.
It may seem a bit strange at first – why come to the memoQ event and speak about other tools? We can think of at least the following reasons:
The interest in this subject was also evidenced by the good amount of attendees at Nimdzi’s session, even though it took place early in the morning after the spectacular Gala dinner the previous evening. In a 20-minute talk, Nimdzi’s very own Yulia Akhulkova dived into the topic of effective reuse of terminology systems, the TaaS (Terminology as a Service) idea, and tried to show different demands and approaches of users and developers to the same terminology-related problems.
In fact, the current terminology integration landscape is really diverse:
|Integration with CAT tools||Integration with QA (Quality Assurance tools)||Integration with authoring tools|
|QTerm or MultiTerm integrate with CAT tools; in some cases (XTM Cloud) terminology functionality is built into the tool. Thus, linguists automatically get the answers to their terminology-based questions. This usually helps to prevent re-work and shortens total localization turnaround time, but it won’t be enough if you are working with several tools.||If connected with QA tools, terms can be checked automatically at all times when an LSP carries out quality control before delivery. But not many terminology systems can boast real integration with independent QA tools. They only provide export (XLS, TBX) which can be incorporated into a QA tool for a terminology check.||The connection of third-party components enables access to a wide range of terminology hits. The terminology component in Congree delivers definitions and usage information on specialized terms. But most of the systems have only several integrations, which narrows the choice.|
So, there is not only a gap between the challenges of content owners and localizers, but also in the way authoring tools, CAT tools, and QA systems address them (don’t get us started on how they name them). And the fact that there are some useful features waiting to be implemented into existing systems means that there is still hope for a better and easier way to manage terminology.
While technology is crucial to success, it is, in fact, not the goal in and of itself (unless you’re the developer, in which case building a perfect technology is probably exactly your final destination). As discussed in a research from Forrester, the majority of enterprises believe that it is content that drives their brand. So the need for content is growing.
The translation industry is one which can facilitate this growth. And that, in turn, seems to be the ultimate, common goal for everyone involved – achieving unity through better content and more transparent communication.
We’ve already partly reached unity and transparency, owing to the events we are throwing and attending, going out there, talking to people, and bridging gaps. What has made the memoQfest a special and rewarding experience was the feeling of being very welcome and respected – in other words, the empathy permeating the event. Empathy is encouraging people to get more creative in solving problems, and when multiplied, it helps the translation and localization community thrive.
Competition is fierce in the Translation Management System (TMS) arena, with dozens of providers duking it out to win over clients.
TMS stands for Translation Management System. However, there’s no exact standard within the translation and localization industry as to what comprises a TMS. Some providers and users of these solutions are adamant that TMS is a system that has management functionality and does not necessarily have Computer-Assisted Translation (CAT) features. But we call any such technology a Business Management System (BMS) since that’s what it does: it helps manage business operations.
The Nimdzi team is ready for LocWorld41. The conference will be held in San Jose, California, on November 6-8. LocWorld provides the opportunity for conference attendees and speakers to attend sessions related to localization -- the business of adapting products, services, and communications internationally to appear native in targeted regions.