X.Net, Inc. has provided globalization services to a wide variety of clients. Because the skills sets are so different, it is rare that you can get good, complete internationalization help from a single vendor. Often we will work together with a translation house to provide a complete professional solution. While there is a common knowledge base between localizers and globalizers, there is a difference in focus.
The best localization companies are those who have well defined procedures and practices. These are people are detail people. They work hard to establish long term relations with their clients. Often these companies are large because of the size of the staffs needed to provide a variety of languages.
On the other hand, the best globalization companies are those who adapt well to a client's needs. These are people are generalists and multi-specialists. They are teachers who work to transfer their knowledge to the client's staff. These companies are often small and sometimes work with other consultants or in conjunction with localization companies. They must be flexible to adapt to the client's specific needs.
We find that the best globalization solutions are usually the client's designs. The client not only knows his or her business better than an outsider, but it takes participation and ownership of the solution to make a project really succeed. Good globalization involves transfer of knowledge to the client. This is because the client staff will have to be able to support the software and continue to develop the software using proper globalization techniques.
Translators usually have long-term relationships with clients because there is always more translation work to be done. There are changes for new revisions and releases as well as translations to new languages for new markets. Globalization consultants, on the other hand, usually have a wider variety of clients with a very different set of challenges. This added experience is very useful in determining what really works for each client and what does not.
It is best to design for a wide range of languages even if you are not supporting them initially. If it cost more the add facilities to support locales that you are not planning to implement, you can leave that portion out but the work that you do should allow such support to be added later. While we look at generalized language support we also have dealt with issues involving specific languages such as Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Thai, Arabic, Farsi, Urdu, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Bokmal, Nynorsk, Russian, Greek, Hindi, Tamil, Vietnamese, Ethiopian, Turkish, Macedonian, Azerbaijani, Tatar, Baskir and more.
We also have done a wide variety or projects on a number of different platforms. We started working on IBM mainframe platforms including extensive work on Fujitsu's FACOM MVS compatible operating system. Most of our recent work has been with Web, Windows and UNIX based systems. We have worked not only on a wide range of different types of applications to a lot of work on systems software such as Unicode support code, databases, data mining tools, operating systems, transaction monitors, communications protocols, scripting languages and utility software.