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Tutorial: Hitchhiker's Guide to Going Global

Tutorial: Hitchhiker's Guide to Going Global

Duration: 2.5 hours

Level of Difficulty: Beginner to Intermediate

Target Audience: Managers, Software Engineers, Systems Analysts, Content Developers, QA and Test Engineers, Web Administrators, Site Coordinators

Abstract for the Hitchhiker's Guide to Going Global Tutorial

Opportunities for international sales are increasing dramatically. Contributing to this are recent international trade agreements, improvements in global communications, and the worldwide deployment of the internet and the Web. The continuing refinement of software standards, e.g. Unicode, enables applications to be multilingual and usable throughout the world at very low cost. The uptake of Web Services will also create opportunities across the globe.

Key to participating in the global market is the efficient internationalization of software and Web applications ensuring you can enter global markets with minimized costs for deploying applications that match user's cultural expectations. This tutorial will educate you on the fundamentals of software and Web internationalization. After taking this tutorial, managers, web administrators, content authors, software developers and quality assurance engineers will have a solid understanding of the functional requirements that international applications must satisfy.


This tutorial is an introduction to internationalization of software and web applications. It is intended for managers of software and Web development organizations and their staff, such as web administrators, content authors, software developers and quality assurance engineers.


Participants will come away with an understanding of the strategy and tactics of software internationalization. The business objectives are introduced and a comprehensive review of the design issues associated with User Interfaces deployed globally is provided. Requirements for multilingual text processing are laid out and the Unicode Character Standard is explained and discussed as a solution. Special attention is given to Web internationalization and markup languages.


(The ordering and exact content is subject to change and may be adapted to cater to registrants requests to cover particular topics in more detail.)


This section discusses the many different national customs challenging software and Web designers and offers efficient solutions. Topics include:

  • Regional requirements: Brief Case Study
  • Goals for Creating culturally acceptable products
  • User Interface Design Requirements

Graphic, Aural, Style Elements

  • Colors
  • Sounds
  • Icons and other pictorial elements
  • Text embedded in Graphics
  • Font styles

Presenting Data

  • Calendar formats, Date, Time, Time zones, Work Schedules
  • Number and Currency Formats
  • Other measurement units
  • Layout (Address formats, etc.)

Other Factors in Global Design

  • Accounting Rules
  • Regulatory Rules (Privacy, Accessibility, Advertising, etc.)
  • Hardware Differences
  • Infrastructure (differences in availability of low cost internet, cell phones, etc.)

Designing for Translation

Issues impacting translation are introduced, including:

  • Text expansion
  • Grammar, concatenation, dynamic UI
  • Writing direction
  • Font selection
  • Text externalization (message catalogs, etc.)
  • Controlled language, Glossaries, etc.

Text Processing

  • Text entry (Keyboard layout, Input methods, Uot Keys)
  • Collation (searching and sorting)
  • Character Properties

Alphabet Soup

The section defines Character Sets and Encodings, and shows a number of legacy encodings. In so doing, it shows how the variety causes problems. Then Unicode and its repertoire are introduced. Features of Unicode are described and explained. Topics covered include:

  • Character sets
  • Encodings
  • Double-byte, Multi-byte Encodings
  • Unicode Character Repertoire
  • Unicode's Encoding Layering
  • UTF-8, 16, 32 and BOM
  • Canonical Forms and Normalization
  • Private Use Area, Gaiji Characters
  • Unicode Algorithms

Web Internationalization

  • Encoding and Language Negotiation
  • Reference Processing Model
  • Unicode in Markup
  • Language Tags
  • Directory structure


Onsite Training Customized For Your Staffing Needs

XenCraft tutorials can be provided at your site to train all your staff. They can be easily customized to address your specific development environment and tools. The tutorials can focus on your target regional markets or be appropriate for audiences targeting worldwide usage and deployment.