Bridging the Gap between Technical Communication and Translation

SpeakersDr. Birgitta Meex and Dr. Daniela Straub
HostOpens internal link in current windowtekom Belgium
DateTuesday, March 6
Time14:00-15:00 PM (CET / GMT+1)
Registrationopening soon
AbstractThe processes of creating and translating/localizing information products are highly interwoven knowing that the content created by technical communicators along the product information life cycle will be translated and localized at a later stage. Globalization and digitization have caused a huge increase in the volume of translation of (mainly technical) content. Today, businesses create an average of 11 different information products that are translated into an average of 12 different languages (Schmitz and Straub 2016). Moreover, global information products are increasingly complex in nature. However, to date the processes of technical communication and translation tend to be largely isolated from each other, resulting in a loss of quality and costly or time-consuming issues during the localization process, i.e. ineffectiveness and inefficiency. Other critical factors that we see as responsible for widening the gap between content creation and localization are different training measures for both disciplines on the one hand, and source text deficiencies, translation problems, and incorrect terminology on the other hand. Therefore, we argue that the quality of translation is already determined during the content creation process in the source language.
The aim of this webinar is to review ways to facilitate the translation and localization workflow and to foster the mutual understanding of both professions as well as interdisciplinary collaboration. It will be shown how gaps can be bridged by employing knowledge, understanding, and preferably reciprocal qualification, i.e. qualification in the respective “opposite” field  (Meex and Straub 2016, Cleary et al. 2017), and by aligning the processes of authoring, translation, and publishing by means of industry standards, competence frameworks, and specific organizational and educational measures.
Speaker bioDr. Birgitta Meex, KU Leuven, Belgium
Dr. Birgitta Meex is committed to filling the gap in technical communication education in Belgium and Europe and wants to help building a solid academic and curricular basis for this growing field. She coordinates the TC module in the Postgraduate Program for Specialized Translation at KU Leuven in Antwerp. She also supervises students with their bachelor’s and master's thesis projects on topics in the domain of TC. Her current research interests include bridging the gap between source content creation and translation/localization. She is a project partner of TecCOMFrame (
Dr. Daniela Straub, tekom, Germany
Dipl.-psychologist, worked several years for process optimizing and organizational development projects at a major international consultancy. Since 2003 she has been working for tekom. She is responsible for studies and surveys and supervises the education and certification. 




iiRDS – Introduction and Status

SpeakerRalf Robers
HostOpens internal link in current windowtekom Danmark
DateTuesday, March 13
Time16:30-17:30 PM (CET / GMT+1)
Registrationopening soon
AbstractEarly in 2016 tekom started its working group “Information 4.0” to elaborate concepts and standards for technical communication in the context of “Internet of things” or “Industry 4.0”. The key working result has been the creation of the open source standard “iiRDS”.
In this webinar, you will first get a short introduction about purpose, concept and potential benefits of iiRDS. This overview is followed by a brief status report of the current rollout implementation and how the entire technical communication community may contribute to it.
Speaker bioRalf Robers, tekom Deutschland e.V., Germany
is head of the documentation department at Siemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics GmbH in Konstanz. His expertise of 25 years in technical communication has led to several professional articles and to a notable reference book about technical documentation. Since January 2017, he is vice president of tekom.




Structured Authoring in the Browser - the Possibilities of Web-based CCMS

SpeakerRalf Steiner
HostOpens internal link in current windowtekom Romania
DateThursday, March 22
Time16:00-17:00 PM (CET / GMT+1)
Registrationopening soon
AbstractDropbox, Google-Apps, iCloud – web-based tools have become a commodity. But what about tech writer tools? Many current CCMS are still based on the classic client-server model. But especially small and medium-sized companies with small tech writer teams shy away from stepping into "big" systems and prefer to stick to their familiar DTP tools. For such scenarios, web-based CCMS are a viable alternative as their SaaS approach does not require any IT investment, while a non-DITA structure eases the adoption.
In the webinar, we will demonstrate with two examples the potential of web-based CCMS.
Speaker bioRalf Steiner, Dokuschmiede GmbH, Germany
Ralf Steiner has been working since 1985 in the field of technical communication as a translator, trainer, and technical writer. Recent projects cover SW documentation, tool implementations, technical trainings, XML-based CCMS solutions, and lately documentation for mechanical engineering companies.