moderated Re: Site updates #changelog

Marv Waschke

I always found localization to be a sticky mess. Implementing an I18N scheme is a significant effort and maintaining it is a drag. You need experts to help with translation and QA. The fact that Chinese occupies far more screen real estate than English while most other languages occupy more screen real estate than English wreaks havoc with screen designs and increases maintenance expenses in unexpected ways. Who gets localized first always offends somebody. (We had a simple solution: make the country sales department fund localization. Whoever was first with the most was first localized. A solution that's probably not available to Mark.) We had quarterly localization reviews and I always checked my supply of aspirin before they started.

All that being said, localization is good. It opens large markets and is just plain polite in a global world, but I would avoid it as long as I could if I were Mark. It eats resources and goes cross-wise if there aren't resources to keep it up properly. I even saw poor localization decrease sales over unlocalized products.
Best, Marv

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