I had the pleasure of participating in W3C’s Multilingual Web workshop, organized in Madrid. I was there to present the Foundation’s experience with different languages and cultures (slides available), but also to listen to other people talk about how to handle many languages on the Web.
Being a W3C workshop, an important topic of discussion was the state of internationalization in Web standards, as well as their implementation status in major browsers. A couple of very interesting sessions also touched on semantic Web technologies and their application in helping language analysis and translation efforts.
Of particular interest to me were the presentations and discussions on multilingual site management. Representatives from the BBC World Service, the European Union, Google, Facebook and more discussed their localization strategies, from language layout to translation crowdsourcing. A few other topics were also very much related to the work of the Foundation’s: Loquendo’s work on speech technology and standards, Google’s Sub-Saharan strategy and the Rosetta Foundation’s translation work for under-served communities.
Overall an excellent program and a flawless organization by the W3C and Universidad Politécnica, under the patronage of the EU. The minutes of the discussions and slides and recordings of all the presentations will be available on the multilingual Web project’s site very soon.