Translating Global Technology: Focus on the Cloud

168674384Sometimes we refer to a lot of clouds as gloomy skies. Perhaps we all felt a little gloom when we learned that the most influential technology leader in the world, Bill Gates, was stepping down as Chairman of the Board at Microsoft. We all have witnessed the personal computer revolution in the 1980s and 1990s. At the risk of this sounding like an obituary, Bill Gates, like Steve Jobs, changed the world and directly affected the way we live our daily lives.

As we reminisce, the fact is there is no gloom in the outlook and predictions of tech leaders about our “cloudy” future. Cloud-based software, growing online content, metadata and reaching everyone, everywhere is our future. As John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, declared we are in the era of “Internet of Everything” or IoE.

“If you look back a decade from today at the impact of the Internet of Everything, I predict you will see it will be five to 10 times more impactful than the whole Internet has been today,” said Chambers.

It is no surprise with the dominance of the cloud and Internet growth in the technology sector, that newly appointed Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, has more than two decades of experience focused on corporate IT infrastructure and cloud computing. As Microsoft’s cloud and enterprise group chief, Nadella is in charge of several consumer cloud products, including Office 365, Bing, Xbox Live and Skype. It is widely believed his experience related to Microsoft software, will drive their cloud computing initiatives faster, more broadly.

Microsoft has been clear in their press that big opportunities for the company lie ahead in mobile and cloud computing. The Financial Times recently reported, “Microsoft has staked its future on cloud computing by appointing a company veteran who has presided over its cloud software platforms and services to lead it into the post-PC age.” Windows Azure is one of the top cloud service providers so it figures that Microsoft will further develop this service and capitalize on the fact that cloud computing is growing.

How does this impact the future of localization and translation in the technology industry? The more in the cloud, the more work we have ahead. There is no doubt that as the innovative tech titans look to open up more access and big data grows, translation is central to achieving the growth predictions.

In 2013, over 1 Exabyte* of data was stored in the cloud. At the end of 2013, Forbes Magazine predicted serious growth in enterprise cloud computing:

  • The worldwide cloud computing market will grow at a 36% CAGR through 2016 reaching a market size of $19.5B by 2016.

What are some of the indications of cloud computing? In a study by Cisco and Intel, despite some of the challenges and complexities of cloud computing (mainly security concerns and complex risk management), the business upsides outweigh the negatives.

The cloud is good for emerging geographical markets like Brazil, China and India and other developing economies because there is a potential to lower IT operating costs and drive efficiency. Similar to Microsoft, most technology leaders will be focusing on how to deliver IT as a service, faster, more securely and transparently to enable businesses to succeed.

Welocalize is supporting this growth with innovative solutions that speed translation and localization for cloud-based products and services. Our experience in specializing in technology industry projects provides a deep understanding of technology companies expanding localization requirements. Content like technical documentation, marketing, user guides and help resources, UI, UGC and forums as well as the software itself (installed, SaaS and cloud-based) – they all need to be multilingual. If the Internet grows and more moves to the cloud, so do language requirements and our work to support our client’s needs.

Language Service Providers have to adapt and integrate localization processes into the development processes used by software and technology companies, for example agile development. Having an agile localization program to match the agile development cycle enables translation resources to be scheduled in advance, guaranteeing a regular team of translators, reviewers and engineers who have extensive product knowledge. Localization has to running in parallel, as an integral part of software development, rather than as an afterthought when it is too late (and expensive) to fix bugs.

As cloud computing market grows internationally, so will the demand for its services and support to be securely available in many languages and cultures.  If you are in the cloud, let’s talk!

Louise Law, Welocalize Communications Manager and Senior Copywriter
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*1 exabyte = 1,073,741,824 GB