Jul 14, 2013

Preparing for localized demos and documentation

There are few things that irritate me more when watching a software demonstration than seeing dialogs and buttons appear in a language which differs from the demonstration language. And if I am preparing instructions for someone in another language, I want to be sure that if it is German, the option to cancel by clicking the correspondending button in a dialog will be Abbruch and not Cancel or Cancelar.

Therefore, the Windows operating system I use is Windows 7 Ultimate. With this operating system, I can activate any of the languages supported by Microsoft after downloading (for free) and installing them. Each user login I create can be configured to use a separate operating system (and it has its own Desktop, so I can avoid showing off my usual clutter of icons in my working profile).

Simply by switching the login, I can toggle between German, English, Russian and Portuguese systems quickly.

Changing the operating system in a profile requires you to log out and log back in to that profile to see the new operating system you have selected.

My primary working environment for translation, memoQ, also supports a number of user interface languages of interest to me and my clients. To change the language for the dialogs and menus in memoQ, I go to Tools > Options... Appearance. The dropdown field at the top of the dialog shows the available languages in the version of memoQ you use. Here is the selection for memoQ 2013:

To see the new language chosen for memoQ, you must quit the application and restart it, unlike other settings changes possible for the appearance, which become active as soon as OK or Apply is clicked.

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