Japanese website globalization (G11n) is a two-step process, including Japanese website internationalization (I18n) and Japanese website localization (L10n). Website internationalization deals primarily with the backend/functionality of a website, enabling back-end technologies to function or support any language and locale. Localization deals primarily with the front end or linguistic and cosmetic aspects of a website including locale-specific content, cultural correctness, translations, and site design.
Whether your project is simple (such as a straight HTML-based Japanese website) or complex (such as a dynamic database-driven Japanese web application), the website internationalization process is the first step in ensuring your website’s global interoperability. During Japanese website internationalization, any language- or culture-specific assumptions in your website’s code base (functionality) should be “neutralized”; your website will then be primed for efficient localization into Japanese.
Your localization company should have solid experience in handling Japanese website internationalization issues, including:
- Reviewing and analyzing the source website
- Ensuring the support of Japanese double-byte fonts
- Resolving issues related to Japanese address, time, date and numerical formats
- Externalizing text strings for ease of Japanese translation
- Website testing, including bug reporting/fixing
You will need to provide your localization company with the following information, collectively referred to as a “Website Internationalization Kit”. This information allows them to analyze your website and to determine its Japanese internationalization requirements:
- URL of the website(s)
- Any passwords or login instructions
- Summary of website architecture
- Summary of any technologies and/or development tools used to develop the website
- Any source code for the website including HTML/XML, web-driven applications, applets, database servers, multimedia products such as FLASH presentations, and web-applications such as online calculators or surveys
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