JoAnn Hackos’ Keynote on DITA and Translation Management

JoAnn Hackos During Her Keynote Presentation at the CSOFT 2011 Summit
JoAnn Hackos During Her Keynote Presentation at the CSOFT 2011 Summit
Another day of seminars and workshops at the localization summit. There was a new service/product announcement and champaign corks were popped by it’s developers. There was also a good presentation on risk management for localization within the pharmaceutical domain. In the evening there was a light classical music concert, followed by a reception where I managed to have a beer in a military-style yurt and chatted to a fellow from Skype about localizing UIs. They certainly know how to throw a good party, even one that appeals to die-hard content geeks like myself. 😉

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post about Bill Hackos’ presentation, JoAnn gave the keynote, which was called “The Role of the OASIS DITA Standard in Translation Management”. Much of it was basically “DITA 101” for an audience that undoubtedly had a few experts in the crowd, but was composed mainly of translators who may not get a chance to seethe underlying code whose content they are translating.

She went on to talk about how DITA can be used from a localization perspective, and there’s one key slide from that section which I found interesting. It talk about how localization using DITA can save an organization money, and what I found interesting was one particular detail. Here it is:

Translation Costs Slide from JoAnn Hackos' Keynote Speech
Translation Costs Slide from JoAnn Hackos' Keynote Speech

This is the first time I have ever seen a breakdown of the types of savings that can be expected when using DITA-based topics which are then localized. The blue portion are the costs associated with doing localization, the red portion are administration costs, and the green portion represents desktop publishing costs (DTP). While things like using Translation Memory (TM), topic reuse or pre-translation done within a given CMS contribute to overall localization cost reductions, the key thing here is that groups using DITA can expect a 20% cost reduction from just using DITA, with another 20% of the overall cost savings coming from doing things efficiently from within a CMS. From an ROI perspective, yet another good argument for buying a CMS when doing DITA (for any group doing extensive localization of their content).

For another blogger’s take on the same presentation, see CSOFT’s 2011 Operations Summit: JoAnn Hackos on the Awesomeness of DITA.

About

"DITAWriter" is Keith Schengili-Roberts. I work for IXIASOFT as a DITA Specialist/Information Architect. And I like to write about DITA and the technical writing community. To get ahold of me you can email me at: keith@ditawriter.com.

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