Current Community Stats
|GlobalSight 8.2 In-Depth: Passolo!|
Eaten 36 hours viagra maximum decrease in the enzyme is, completed.
One trend we're increasingly seeing is the need to pass work between TMS systems. It is more and more common for both translation buyers and translation vendors to each operate their own TMS. GlobalSight can already import WorldServer projects into GlobalSight as XLZ files. With 8.2, it can now import projects from SDL Passolo 2011.
SDL Passolo 2011 is a tool for managing the translation of software strings, and it offers many specialized features, like the ability to extract strings directly from DLLs or other binary formats. Passolo uses its own project format, called the LPU, to store information about the translations. Notably, LPUs also embed TM information as well as other metadata.
With GlobalSight 8.2, you're now able to import a Passolo LPU directly into GlobalSight. Using a converter based on Passolo's own API, GlobalSight will extract segments to be translated from the LPU and use them to create a job. After the work is completed, the translations are written back to the LPU, which can then be reopened in Passolo. By doing this, a user can integrate software translation using Passolo into a broader localization process. For example, you can leverage software strings against TMs from other parts of your business, use machine translation, and take advantage of GlobalSight's workflow management.
But enough talk! Let's walk through the functionality.
Here's a Passolo 2011 project that has already been created by importing the Notepad executable on a Windows system.
In GlobalSight, we create a File Profile to handle the import of Passolo projects via an LPU file:
GlobalSight imports the LPU by using a Windows-based converter, similar to the ones for Office or InDesign. The converter uses the Passolo API to extract LPU content and writes it out as an XLIFF file, which is then imported into GlobalSight.
In GlobalSight, the resulting job moves through the translation workflow normally.
When the job is exported, the translations are written back to the LPU, again using the Passolo APIs. The user downloads the LPU from GlobalSight and imports it back to Passolo. The translations from GlobalSight are now available, with their state set to "for review".
The user can continue QAing the translations in Passolo as usual. When process is complete, the Passolo user uses Generate Target File to produce a localized copy of notepad.exe.
And there you have it: Windows Notepad, translated in GlobalSight... with a little help from SDL Passolo 2011.
Special thanks to Gary Lefman of Cisco (@CiscoL10n), who assisted in the design of this feature and whose advice was invaluable!
|GlobalSight 8.2 In-Depth: "Update Leverage"|
GlobalSight 8.2 has been out for two weeks, so it's time for another look at some of what's new. You can read the previous post, about improvements to "My Activities", here.
GlobalSight leverages new jobs against existing TMs when a job is created. In the past, there hasn't been a way to re-leverage a job later on, no matter how much time has passed or what else has happened in the system. This limitation was a problem for users working on long-running projects or trying to collaborate with other translators.
However, a new feature in GlobalSight 8.2 makes it easy to re-apply leverage, both against a reference TM or against the translations in other jobs that are still in progress. A companion feature allows a Project Manager to recalculate a job's word counts as needed to reflect the changes.
Using "Update Leverage"
The Update Leverage feature is accessible from the Activity Details page. Clicking "Update Leverage" will bring up the "Update Leverage" screen:
Here, there are several options for the user.
This is useful in a lot of different situations.
Leveraging against Additional TMs
In a high-volume translation environment, TMs are constantly being updated with new data, either as the result of other translation projects or because of new TMs that have been brought online. Why limit a job to only the translations that were available when it was created? With "Update Leverage", you don't have to.
Collaboration Between Multiple Translators
Before GlobalSight 8.2, when multiple translators worked simultaneously on separate jobs, there was no way for them to share their work. "Update Leverage" fixes that by allowing the translators to leverage each other's job TMs to their own work. For a multi-day project, each translator could upload their offline work at the end of each day, and then leverage against the other jobs the next morning before starting to translate again.
Populating Repetitions by Leveraging Against the Current Job
This one is sneaky, but useful. Some editing environments (including the GlobalSight online editor) don't have a way to automatically propagate the translations of repeated segments throughout a job. "Update Leverage" lets the user re-leverage a job against its own TM, which will work around this limitation.
Updating Word Counts
Updating leverage can affect the word counts for a job. However, the situations in which a user may or may not want to update the word counts for a job in progress are complicated, depending on the business processes involved.
For this initial implementation, we've added the ability to update word counts for a job as a separate feature, decoupled from "Update Leverage".
"Update Word Counts" is available via the Job Details screen, and will recalculate the word counts for a workflow of your choice within a job.
Enabling the Feature
Both "Update Leverage" and "Update Word Counts" have their own permissions.
The permission for "Update Leverage" can be found under the "My Activities" section. For new companies created in GlobalSight 8.2, the "LocalizationParticipant" Permission Group will have this permission checked by default. Existing companies will need to enable it.
The permission for "Update Word Counts" can be found under the "My Jobs" section. For new companies created in GlobalSight 8.2, the "ProjectManager" Permission Group will have this permission checked by default. Existing companies will need to enable it.
This is the first release of these features, so there are a couple things we're looking to improve in the future.
|An Irishman in New England|
My first blog from my new office! In August I relocated my family to Newburyport MA, just north of Boston. The level of interest in our GlobalSight technology has grown over the least two years to the point where I’ve been living out of a suitcase, spending half my time in the US meeting clients and discussing how they can capitalize on the efficiencies of GlobalSight and our other technologies. Moving here was the next logical step, made easy by how warmly we’ve been welcomed by the locals!
While I’ve been busy with my move, our GlobalSight development team have been particularly busy delivering new features and bug fixes in GlobalSight. Some of the key new features we’ve enabled include:
Another new feature in the pipeline is an online version of the Desktop Uploader. We are recreating the same functionality but this time imbedding it within GlobalSight – no more need to install desktop client software for your content submitters. Another feature will be a service based client you can install on the content server that will allow you to configure a push/pull to transit data to/from GlobalSight. These will both be available in our 8.3 release that will be available in December.
I'm excited to see other companies building service offerings around the GlobalSight open source platform. DIG-IT! solutions are now providing consulting and professional services to help clients deploy GlobalSight - Milen Epik has recently joined the team over there - Milen was part of the original GlobalSight Corp. team and ran the Professional Services team at GlobalSight for UK many years. GlobalME have also done some very interesting work recently, creating a connector for GlobalSight to Wordpress and Drupal, and now providing hosting and deployment services.. The GlobalMe guys are going to join us at our GlobalSight bootcamp prior to LocWorld, so please drop by if you can.
Earlier this month I had the opportunity to present at the Localization Research Centre conference in Limerick, Ireland. I posed the question – “will we be the Fedex of Words or the Walmart of words?”. The point of the presentation was to take a look at Fedex and how they have focused on driving all cost and inefficiency out of the entire supply chain – something the Localization industry as a whole doesn’t have a good track record. In the presentation I looked at the high level of admin translations – as we’ve moved from an industry delivering large, discrete projects to a continuous translation flow, our admin systems haven’t kept the pace and key points in the supply chain are still trying to deliver services using old models. For organisations trying to achieve operational efficencies enterprise systems such as GlobalSight that support the entire supply chain become critical infrastructure. So what about the ‘Walmart of Words’ – Walmart has succeeded by delivering on a size and scale that nobody could compete with – there is no single largest service provider in the localization space. This has an impact on the other key friction in our industry – the flow of content. The inability to simply and efficiently move translatable content from authoring system to content management, to translation management system into translator workspace, has created cost throughout the supply chain. The lack of a ‘Walmart’ to drive standards has resulted in a lack of standardization that has hurt the entire supply chain.
As the need for standards has received more attention over the last year we can hope that real change is coming – XLIFF 2.0 is certainly going to be the cornerstone of our next generation of standards, and the work the XLIFF committee is doing is very promising – there might not be a Walmart of words out there but there is a willing and focused standards community!
|GlobalSight 8.2 In-depth: "My Activities"|
With the release of GlobalSIght 8.2 this week, we wanted to give more information about some of the new things in the release. For many users, "My Activities" screen is the most important part of GlobalSight -- it's how many users manages their work. So it is a natural place to start talking about what's new in GlobalSight 8.2.
We've been looking at the performance of the "My Activities" page since GlobalSight 8.1.1, when we dramatically improved how the page behaves when there are large numbers of jobs to display. We've continued to improve that part of the product in GlobalSight 8.2, and we're happy with what we've accomplished. Users should see noticeably faster responses even with large numbers of activities.
Based on internal testing.
Batch Completion of Activities
One of the most common complaints we hear from Welocalize PMs who use GlobalSight is that it's difficult to manage a lot of jobs at once. It's common for a user to end up with many activities assigned to them at once, such as several Review tasks that are all being completed at the same time. Once the work is done, the user needs go to the details page for each activity and click the "Task Completed" button. When more than one activity needs completion, this quickly grows tedious.
In GlobalSight 8.2, we added the "Complete Activity" feature to the My Activities screen to solve just this problem. Simply select the tasks you want to complete, and advance all the workflows with a single click!
Batch Completion of Workflows
However, we didn't stop there. There was another problem we kept hearing about. For various reasons, sometimes users wanted to quickly advance a workflow through multiple steps at once. Often this happens when the workflow isn't precisely modeling how the translation process works, for example because Translation and Review step are sometimes combined, or there's an optional final step that isn't always performed. Although not everyone needed it, we found that it was a common request to allow a PM to complete all the remaining activities in a workflow, following the default workflow transitions to the exit. So we added the "Complete Workflow" button to do this.
The two features each have their own permission setting. They're enabled by default for the Administrator and ProjectManager permission groups for new companies. Existing companies will need to enable the features explicitly.
GlobalSight 7.1.8. is due for release in early August, so I wanted to take some time to talk about some of the new features you can expect.
First, there’s GlobalSight Editions – users will be able to direct content over to another instance of GlobalSight once they’ve been paired up – no need to have everyone set up on one instance any more. Other features you can expect :
You will also be able to add or remove files from a job after you’ve created it. There’s lots more planned in the release and we hope to be playing with a beta release in July.We are also launching a new version of the website – we’ve been collating feedback from all of you and hope to have the new version launched in July. One of the features of the new site will be the ability for users to vote on new features they want to see in the next release – I’m going to be posting up our roadmap for everyone to share their opinion and decide on some of the priorities.
|What's happening with GlobalSight?|
January 5th, 2009, we launched GlobalSight as an open source Translation Management platform. Gary Prioste has worked hard over the last year to help grow the community and develop the technology and I consider it a great honour to continue his work, as Gary has recently stepped down from his role as the head of the GlobalSight steering committee.
Read More It’s been a busy year, and we’ve watched as a huge community has grown up around the platform- Looking at the statistics on our www.GlobalSight.com website, we’ve recently reached 2,700 registered users - between them this group has 8,970 unique file downloads from the website!
One of the initiatives we undertook last year was to run a series of Bootcamps, where users at any stage in the deployment process could come along for a two day session and collaborate with our engineers and each other on troubleshooting, installation configuration and deployment best practices. We’ve run two Bootcamps in Dublin and one in San Francisco, with a wide variety of users from different organisations and the feedback has been tremendous. It’s a great opportunity to meet other people going through the same effort and to learn from each other. We plan on holding more Bootcamps in 2010 – We’ll post the details on the website as soon as we have a schedule.
We’ve helped a lot of people over the last year get up and running with GlobalSight. Our team of consultants and engineers are able to quickly and easily transition your business requirements and processes into a fully configured GlobalSight deployment, with training and support services providing real value for money – you can read about the work we did for AOL –www.GlobalSight.com. AOL carried out a detailed review of the TM solutions in the market, as they were keen to move from their existing system which was going end-of-life, and after selecting GlobalSight, engaged our team to help them transition their system.
There are many companies that want to use large scale applications like GlobalSight, but don’t necessarily have the infrastructure or support teams in place to deploy hardware configurations in house. An industry has grown around the ‘Software as a Service’ model, removing the need for users to ‘own’ hardware – they can simply pay for the access to the software as a service. We were delighted last year when Yan Yu, CEO of Spartan consulting, decided to offer GlobalSight using a SaaS model (www.GlobalSightsaas.com). I caught up with Yan recently to find out how his new business venture was going:
“Since launching in October 2008, more than 20 companies have signed up for a 60-day free trial of GlobalSightSaaS. These companies are located in North America, EMEA, Asia and Australia. We are pleased to report that many of them are already using the system for production work and they are quite pleased with the GlobalSight system.
We would also like to report that Chase Tingley has joined Spartan Consulting as Vice President of Engineering. Chase brings to Spartan a tremendous amount of expertise in translation management systems. Chase joined Idiom in 2003 and led development of the WorldServer Global Electronic Publishing product. In 2006, he took over development of all filter components in Idiom WorldServer. Chase has contributed work to multiple open source projects including Mozilla. He holds an A.B degree in Computer Science from Harvard College”. Prior to starting Spartan Consulting, Yan was part of the senior management team at Idiom, and through Spartan Consulting, provides a range of consulting services around the best use of these technologies.
Over the last 6 months, I’ve been working with The Rosetta Foundation (www.therosettafoundation.org) to help them deploy GlobalSight as one of the key technologies they use to support their initiatives. Early in the process with them we identified the need to address access to technology issues in regions that have limited internet access, and provide an offline environment for uses that don’t have access to licensed CAT tools. We were fortunate to have Mahesh Kulkarni of CDAC (www.cdac.in) involved in the Rosetta foundation, and he has made 5 developers available to work with our team at Welocalize to build out new functionality to address these issues. So what are we building? The core development is based around an online/offline editing environment we call Project Central. Project Central will support the needs of three different types of users – Project managers, translators and reviewers. The system is being built as an open source platform, and will utilize a new set of Web Services API’s we are building to integrate with GlobalSight. When finished, Project Central will provide a completely new UI for users, and, with a simpler code base and access to a new set of web services, we hope to build a developer community around the technology to allow the wider community to enhance and develop the solution.
Over the last twelve months we’ve developed a lot of new features for GlobalSight, adding support for new file types, expanding the functionality to provide facilities such as in content preview for xml files, etc. While we’ve been working on these features, we’ve also considered the future of the platform, and challenged our teams to define a strategic roadmap for GlobalSight that will ensure it continues to be relevant to the entire localization supply chain. When we launched GlobalSight open source, we created an environment where anyone involved in the localization process could deploy a full Translation management system in a cost effective manner. When we look at the traditional model for TMS deployments, it’s historically been a case of a client buying a license, and then configuring the system to reflect not just their own processes and users, but also all the workflow processes, users and assets for all the agencies and translators they work with, creating a complex environment that then requires the client to administer and manage. At the same time, agencies and translators are faced with having to track and manage work across a multitude of platforms, logging in and out of different systems as work gets assigned to them from different clients. To draw a comparison, imagine if I had to set up everyone I wanted to email to on my email system, and if I wanted to check my email I had to log in to every system that people might have emailed me on!
And so, GlobalSight Editions was born. Still in development, with a beta release planned for April 2010, GlobalSight editions will allow users to configure and manage just their own users and processes in their edition, and participate in a chain of federated editions across the supply chain. A client will configure GlobalSight with their TM’s users, upload content and have it leveraged. Once leveraged, the workflow will send the translatable content out to the predefined edition of the MLV, who in turn can send the content directly to the translator’s edition, if they have one. Once the predefined workflow is complete, the edition will pass the content back to the previous edition. Organisations will be able to manage their own users, workflows and commercially sensitive data on their own edition and the distributed technology will allow the platform to scale to any size required. Xliff will be used as the file format for the interchange, and it’s hoped that other technology vendors will provide similar support in the future to allow the concept to work across multiple platforms.
Other initiatives underway at the moment include further investigation into MT integration, support for sub segment leveraging, and integration with other open source technologies within the translation space, but more on that next time. We are also planning to give the GlobalSight website a makeover in the near future and I hope to be able to share some design ideas with you soon.
I’ll be attending as many conferences as I can this year and hope to meet as many of you as possible – I’ll be at the ELIA conference in April and welcome the opportunity to discuss any ideas or suggestions for the platform any of you may have!
|January 28th/29th 2010 – Globalsight Bootcamp, Dublin|
The Bootcamp gave attendees the opportunity to step through a detailed Globalsight installation and configuration, with plenty of discussion generated around best practices and how to address some of the more complex localization issues. Participants also got free troubleshooting support for their own installations – Andrew Gibbons, one of our support engineers, was put on the spot to resolve a number of install issues, and yet again, he was able to diagnose, troubleshoot and resolve all the issues quickly and easily, whilst imparting useful debug knowledge to the participants.
Regardless of your role in the localization process, if you would like to attend one of these Bootcamps please let us know – we will be scheduling more sessions in the US, Europe and Asia over the next few months.
We’ve also been busy on the development front – several initiatives are underway that will transform how users interact with Globalsight. First, we have Globalsight Editions – slated for a beta release in May, Editions will allow federated versions of Globalsight to communicate with each other, sending content from one Globalsight Edition to another using the XLIFF file format – this use of distributed computing will allow users to scale Globalsight, and simplify setup and configuration as each site will only need to contend with their own users and workflow.
More details on our development efforts to follow shortly – next time I’ll update you on the work we are doing with CDAC and the Rosetta Foundation to create a new set of tools and UI, and the efforts to create a new set of web services to facilitate integration and information reuse.
Some Comments from the Bootcamp participants :
“I think at the end of the two-day boot camp I mentioned already that I found the workshop really, really good, but I would now like to confirm that in writing and pass on a big "Thank you for a really great workshop" to you.
“What I found invaluable was the first hand experiences with GlobalSight that were shared by yourselves and Stephen. That is typically the kind of information you cannot obtain from reading the manuals.”
|GlobalSight Community Meeting at Localization World Silicon Valley 2009|
October 20, 2009 – Welocalize hosted a GlobalSight user community meeting in advance of the Localization World Conference Silicon Valley. The meeting was well attended, with a good cross section of users – Clients, MLV’s, SLV’s and translators.
Gary Prioste opened the meeting with an update on the community – 1501 registered users as of October 5th and 7,842 total downloads year to date. Gary discussed the ongoing development efforts, highlighting some of the key development plans for the next 6 months, including GlobalSight Editions, an architecture for linking together various versions of GlobalSight within a supply-chain, and a plan for introducing Automatic Actions and a related SDK.
I demonstrated some of the new features in the current release (7.1.6), including:
· CVS integration
· Improved custom filters
· New Desktop icon features which allow full control over the size of jobs in terms of file size or file count
We had two interesting presentations from the community – one from Stephen Roantree of AOL, who presented a case study about AOL’s migration from WorldServer to GlobalSight, and another from Sultan Ghaznaw of YYZ Translations about the use of GlobalSight in an MLV.
Stephen discussed the process he used to evaluate GlobalSight, some of the new features he requested developed to make GlobalSight fit his organisation, the very positive leveraging results after migrating TM’s, and the very positive experiences he has had with the Welocalize Professional services team. Stephen highlighted the need for a well documented process and complimented the Professional services team on the quality of their contribution in this area.
Sultan provided us with an overview of his experience with GlobalSight, describing in particular a project of 300,000 words into 18 languages. Sultan had been testing the system and decided to go live earlier than planned as he felt that GlobalSight would help ensure successful delivery for the client. We all like statistics and Sultans were very impressive – saving $130,000 against his planned costs, and delivering the project in 4 months – 2 months earlier than his ‘non GlobalSight’ schedule!
Our final presentation was given by Yan Yu of Spartan Consulting. Spartan Consulting is a Silicon Valley consulting firm established by some of the ex-Worldserver team, and Yan was presenting his new set of services – a hosted GlobalSight environment, providing users a hassle free entry into full implementation of an enterprise level Translation Management System, without any of the complexity of buying, installing, configuring and managing hardware, at a cost of $30 per user per month.
We also heard how the developer community has started to grow, with CDAC (India) making 4 developers available for the next year to work on GlobalSight functionality development to support The Rosetta Foundation, a not for profit organisation delivering translation technology services to NGO’s and other initiatives requiring translation services. The Rosetta Foundation is using GlobalSight as the core technology to deliver these services.
|Silicon Valley Boot Camp Helps Launch 9 Users|
Another class of GlobalSight community members from clients, language service providers and consulting organizations attended the second GlobalSight Technical Boot Camp near San Francisco August 11th-12th.
Another class of GlobalSight community members from clients, language service providers and consulting organizations attended the second GlobalSight Technical Boot Camp near San Francisco August 11th-12th. The agenda and format were very similar to the first Boot Camp: Day 1 covered installation and configuration in detail. On Day 2, attendees formed teams and used GlobalSight to run simulations of translation projects, viewed a demonstration of CrowdSight (the crowd-sourcing application built on the GlobalSight API), explored GlobalSight functionality and discussed the product roadmap.
|Migrating from WorldServer to GlobalSight|
Read More Our professional services team has spent a good chunk of time migrating a large customer from WorldServer to GlobalSight over the past month. We have developed some tools and techniques that minimize leverage loss that could be quite helpful if you are in the same situation. HTML content can be particularly tricky when migrating TM's. Contact me at
if you are interested in hearing more.
|16 Members Graduate from Dublin Boot Camp|
Sixteen GlobalSight community members attended the first GlobalSight Technical Boot Camp held on the Trinity College campus in Dublin this week, a venue made possible by the Centre for Next Generation Localisation (CNGL). Representatives from corporations, language service providers, IT consultancies, and academia spent two hands-on days with members of the Welocalize GlobalSight team, learning about GlobalSight installation, configuration, and operation, resolving issues they’ve encountered, and getting answers to a variety of questions.
|Empowering the Market with Open Source|
Hi… I’m Steve Billings, and I recently joined the GlobalSight team at Welocalize as Director of Solutions Architecture. I’ll be helping prospective users explore whether and how GlobalSight could help them streamline their translation operations, as well as helping them implement and deploy GlobalSight if they choose to use professional services from Welocalize.
When Welocalize announced plans to release GlobalSight as an open source product, I was engaged with users of a similar technology. They had just learned the news that the platform on which they had built their translation operations was headed for the recycling bin. We heard plenty of colorful terms to describe their reaction, but at the heart of it, they felt disempowered. Support for their technology platform was being wound down, and there was nothing they could do about it.
To a market in this frame of mind, open source offers a very exciting, and empowering, new option including a measure of insurance against potentially disruptive changes in their technology vendors’ priorities. Underscoring the point nicely have been Oracle’s assurances that MySQL’s future continues to be bright, prompting some to conclude that MySQL’s open source model may have helped guarantee its survival.
So count me among the believers that GlobalSight represents a very positive development for this market. GlobalSight certainly has the market’s attention, and a window of opportunity to gain the necessary momentum. There’s still plenty of work to do, but I’m certainly excited to now be part of that effort.
|New Document - Understanding GlobalSight|
Today on www.globalsight.com we released a new document called Understanding GlobalSight Guide. This is a supplement to the Getting Started Guide. The Getting Started Guide steps users thought the configuration and setup of GS, and roundtrips a sample project. Understanding GlobalSight goes into further detail about why things are configured the way they are, and provides some tips and best practices.
Read More Some examples:
Expect more documents like this on a periodic basis, explaining the inner-workings of various components in GlobalSight.
|Five Weeks Post Launch - GlobalSight Update|
It's been about 5 weeks since the January 5th launch of GlobalSight as an open source product. We've been pleasantly surprised by the level of activity, including over 400 software downloads. Several companies are evaluating GlobalSight as their future TMS, running pilots with live content.
We conducted a survey over the last couple of weeks of users who've downloaded the product. Some of the things we've learned include:
Speaking of releases, a new release will be available on 2/17 - version 7.1.1. This release includes 22 bug fixes, including fixing the export functionality from Desktop Icon, the Online Segment Editor unable to find Terminology matches, and a problem when creating a new job containing PPTX files.
Version 7.1.1 will also include a new Update Installer, that will make the process of installing updates simpler, and less exposed to user error.
We are committed to making GlobalSight Open Source a viable alternative to the commercial TMS's on the market today. A big part of this is the involvement and contributions from the community. We're excited by what we've seen so far, and will do all we can to keep the momentum going. If you see things that would help that we're not doing, please bring them to our attention.
|January 5th Launch Just Around the Corner|
The January 5th launch of the GlobalSight Open product is rapidly approaching. Converting this product to open source was not a minor undertaking. Replacing the database, middleware, workflow engine, and all the other 3rd party components with open source equivalents, was like replacing all of the vital organs in a human being. The patient was clinging to life for a period there, only to be revived through vigorous regression testing and bug fixing. What we're left with is a stronger product than we started with - the core technology has been replaced by more robust, modern components, and many of the lingering bugs that had been part of the Ambassador product have been fixed.
A Beta Testing program was launched on December 11th, with 16 companies participating. Most companies were able to get the product up and running on their own, with the assistance of the Installation Guides, although the process has exposed some unclear instructions in the Installation Guides, which we have now corrected, in time for the launch.
The Beta program also allowed us to test the www.globalsight.com website. The Forums in particular have been a great source for logging and answering questions related to the installation process, and various other technical tips. There is a solid core of information now available to the open source community to use as a knowledge base in getting their installation up and running.
We're looking forward to January, and getting this initiative off the ground. We're hoping companies can get this running on their own. If they can't, the Welocalize Professional Services Group is available for support and implementation help.
|Open Source TMS Reality|
On October 23rd, Common Sense Advisory came out with “Industry Dreams of Open-Source TMS”, a blog post discussing the challenges of the GlobalSight Open Source initiative (www.globalsight.com). While it did raise several interesting points, the article brings up a few issues that require further discussion.
Total Cost of Ownership
The CSA article purports that “license fees account for 10% - 20% of the total cost of ownership,” and suggests that a free, open source GlobalSight license isn’t really consequential. Well given license fees are often 6-figures and most companies are looking at ways to reduce costs in this economy, our clients are telling us that the license fee is quite meaningful.Read More
In addition, the important thing to remember here is that a company (LSP or enterprise customer), can install the product and, using the QuickStart Guide, be up and running in a couple of days with a pilot project. In a typical scenario, more pilot projects would follow, and results would guide how fast the system is moved into production – if at all. Likewise, the number and variety of projects and departments that are moved onto the system are guided by the success and confidence gained from its gradual use. Issues that can’t be resolved internally or by the open source community or through professional services will become apparent early on in this process, minimizing the investment risk.
We aren’t arguing that a company should download, install and commit a significant amount of resources from day one, just because the license is free. We are simply suggesting that the approach to innovation in this industry has been inefficient. It is time to “Collaborate to Innovate” instead of reinventing the wheel on both the client and vendor side each time we try to solve the same problem. Economics, freedom of choice, long-term security and the desire for collaborative innovation are driving the GlobalSight Open Source initiative. Participating companies will be in a position to try a sophisticated, enterprise-level TMS for very little cost. The downside risk to this approach is very small.
Lack of Critical Mass in Open Source Community
The article states that “the majority of open-source initiatives fail to garner enough development energy to stay competitive with commercial efforts over the long haul.” This statement, on its own, is true. But here are some reasons we expect the GlobalSight initiative to have a different result:
The Conflict Between the Needs of Corporate Users and LSPs
While the needs of these two groups are sometimes different, a vast majority of the requirements are the same. Everyone needs robust, server-side translation memories, terminology management, editable workflow tools and flexible reporting to provide the tools one needs to manage a business. Everyone is looking for standardization around TMX, SRX and TBX. The rest can and will be developed by the open source community. There are over 30 LSPs who have signed up so far to be a part of this initiative, many of whom were part of the Idiom LSP program.
Welocalize is absolutely committed to providing a robust, open source TMS to be released in January 2009, which both clients and vendors can use to support their business. Some might question our motives in providing technology to competitors, but our vision is to drive innovation and standards in the most creative, collaborative and efficient way possible, thus increasing the opportunity for the industry as a whole to grow the overall size of the market.