The Importance of Linguistic Testing in Localization
The process of localization is a complex and intricate process, requiring precision and accuracy. Although the steps in the localization process are fairly simple, one major step that stands out is the testing step. In providing translation solution for enterprises, translators have to undertake the testing process. This testing process, known as linguistic testing require expert knowledge and usually takes place alongside the traditional translation process.
The linguistic testing process is of profound importance in the process of localization. In the absence of linguistic testing, the translation companies are not aware of the errors in translations and the localization. If these errors are not addressed, they may lead to mistranslations. Consequently, in the absence of linguistic testing, the adaptation of an application or software to the target market becomes difficult. Translation companies across the world take steps to include linguistic testing in their processes to eliminate any errors that may have taken place during localization.
However, to fully understand the importance of linguistic testing in localization, it is important to know what linguistic testing really is.
What is Linguistic Testing?
Linguistic testing is a quality assurance step that ensures that the context of a program is culturally appropriate for a target audience. It is mainly used in apps, software, and game development process. Linguistic testing checks how accurate the software or application is, in the context of language standards, rules, and grammar.
The process of localization involves the adaptation of a product to fit the needs of a target audience. Therefore, it is important to test your product on all devices and systems in multiple languages. Doing so ensures that your product release does not encounter any problems or issues and is culturally relevant to the target audience. This, in turn, will help to ensure your company does not face any client dissatisfaction. In summary, linguistic testing can be referred to as a component of non-functional testing and is an important step in the evaluation of context. This context relates to the language attribute of an application, software, or website for an audience.
The Characteristics of Linguistic Testing
The linguistic testing process involves the testing carried out by professional language service providers to see whether the final product fits the linguistic requirements of a target audience. This process of linguistic testing plays a vital role in the success of software, application, or website in a target market.
There are certain characteristics of linguistic testing, which are:
- Testing of localized functionalities of an application or software, such as screens, user interfaces, and content. This testing also involves inspecting if these elements are culturally relevant
- The focus of the linguistic testing should be to see the context of how a language is used
- Linguistic testing is usually carried out in the last stages of software testing, before the final launch
- The quality of the language and other language-related issues are also taken into account
- Linguistic testing ensures the appropriateness and suitability of a software or application with the target audience
Things to Consider during Linguistic Testing
During the process of localization, a number of tests are performed to find problems that may affect the effectiveness of a product in a specific market. Even when this linguistic testing overlaps functional testing, it is important to consider that each process is unique. They all need different support tools and are essential elements for the adaptation of content for the target audience.
The process of linguistic testing relates to quality assurance procedures for testing the relevance of software, mobile application, or a new product in a target market. In fact, the first step in language quality assurance is linguistic testing. Moreover, it is carried out efficiently with the help of technologies and tools that are specific to a business.
When testing an application, an LSP or a linguistic tester will spot any problems that may occur by translations that are out of context. These are some of the things a linguistic tester may consider in the process of localization are:
- Parts or chunks of text that have been left untranslated
- Lines of text that are incorrectly translated
- Any issues with punctuation, grammar, or spelling
- Typing errors
- Inconsistencies in terminology in the user interface such as titles of dialog boxes, menu items, help, and user interface files
- Broken characters that are specifically used for a language
- Sounds, colors, symbols, images, and cultural references used in the application
- Conversions that are country-specific, such as zip codes, phone numbers, addresses, and names that are incorrectly adjusted
- Any errors in calendar, time, and date formats
- Mistakes in currency conversions and money-related symbols
- Use or incorrect use of numerical formats such as negatives, separators, and metric conversions
- Style and tone of the translation
- Correct relation between images and text
- The appropriateness of all company-related product information, such as contact information, phone number for technical support and links to websites.
Linguistic testing is an important part of the localization process that involves careful inspection to ensure smooth localization. Due to the factors that must be considered in linguistic testing, it is best to assign this task to localization experts. Moreover, an LSP related to a professional localization platform ensures no feature of a new application or software is left out during the process of localization. This is a vital step in ensuring an error-free transistion to a global market for creating an appeal for the target audience.