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I18n recharter should address localizability

From: Tex Texin <tex@xencraft.com>
Date: Fri, 16 Jul 2004 02:20:23 -0400
Message-ID: <40F773A7.463B5D5@xencraft.com>
To: www-international@w3.org
Cc: Yves Savourel <ysavourel@translate.com>

The technologies of the W3C have become very sophisticated, enabling the
development of complex, powerful applications. Although these technologies make
some provision for language and culture through the internationalization
efforts of the organization, it is not at all obvious or easy to efficiently
localize applications using these technologies.

There are no guidelines within the W3C for architecting applications, or for
that matter designing W3C specifications, to insure
localizability, or recommendations for processes supporting localization of
applications.

This is a significant deficiency. There have been some external efforts, such
as XLIFF and TMX, which make use of XML in support of exchanging localization
data, but that does not address insuring that the design of an application
supports localization of that application. Application developers are
discovering when they face their first localization effort that some
rearchitecting is called for. Other technologies and platforms for development
of applications come with a recommended architecture and support for
localization, so that if the recommendations are adhered to, the application
can be efficiently localized.

Web Services is certainly an area where localization requirements will be
significant and this is exemplified in the Web Services Internationalization
Usage Scenarios draft
(http://www.w3.org/International/ws/ws-i18n-scenarios-edit/Overview.html).

There are some industry experts that are developing guidelines for using XML so
that contents can be localized. Yves Savourel (ENLASO) has published
information in that regard. (See his paper in the next Unicode conference
http://www.unicode.org/iuc/iuc26/abstracts.html#a006). Richard Ishida (W3C) has
published localization considerations for DTD design. However, the W3C should
raise awareness within its organization of the need for specifications to
support efficient localization in proposed technologies, and there should be
architectural recommendations for achieving this.

To accomplish this, some resources need to be allocated to work on it. Either
the I18n working group or perhaps a separate Localization Working group should
be tasked with defining requirements, and recommending appropriate localization
architectures. A separate group or task force may be called for, as the skills
and tasks for localization may be different from those used for i18n.

There should be liasions between the localization group and the other standards
organizations in the localization and linguistics space and coordination with
related standards e.g. XLIFF, TMX, etc.

The team should have some members that are experienced with localization of
documents and applications.

Please consider this in the rechartering of the i18n wg.

tex

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Tex Texin   cell: +1 781 789 1898   mailto:Tex@XenCraft.com
Xen Master                          http://www.i18nGuy.com
                         
XenCraft		            http://www.XenCraft.com
Making e-Business Work Around the World
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Received on Friday, 16 July 2004 02:20:36 GMT

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