Ever wanted to peek into how location-based technology has become essential to modern life? Just glance at your cab driver, checking the map on his phone before every turn. However, it’s not always a smooth drive with the maps (no pun intended). Apart from connectivity and network issues, language is often the main challenge, especially for those who are more comfortable with the local language. For instance, if your destination is a location that, perhaps, has been lost in translation and cannot be found on the map, then you’re in a soup. With more than 4000 written languages in the world (yes!), why on earth should something as critical as a map be limited to a few languages?
As globalization has become the essence of the omnichannel business landscape, there are a plethora of businesses that are looking for language-localization to connect with consumers in their preferred language. At the heart of the operational process of maps-based service-providers like cab aggregators, logistics, hyperlocal businesses, etc., lies the compelling need for translation and transliteration of maps. This would not only pave the way for regional adoption of maps, but also ensure increased ROI for local businesses, and unrivaled customer experiences. However, there are a couple of immediate challenges that need to be addressed in terms of both technology and competency levels.
Challenges for localization of maps
- One of the primary constraints of producing maps in local languages is the quality of the translation. There are instances when names of certain places cannot be translated into the local language and having them retained in English can make more sense. Again, at times, the text in the native language must be excluded to make it more relevant. As such, translation to a different language needs to be carefully proofed and checked.
- While many web-based translation tools are widely available, it is important to use a trusted source like native speakers, preferably those with geographic knowledge. For this, you need a strong combination of technology and human competence.
- For maps being presented in multiple languages, the labels need to fall in the same place on each version of the map. This means the space for the label needs to accommodate the name with maximum letters, ensuring that each label does not overprint another. Also, if a name is changed, it has to be updated in several different languages.
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For accurate conversion of maps in local languages, billions of POI (point of interest) records need to be converted to regional languages. It is a hugely time-consuming exercise and error-prone if done manually. Moreover, POI data keeps changing, and it’s a huge challenge to keep it up to date.
An Effective Solution
Leading GIS services provider, CSS Corp addresses these challenges with its proficiency in two core differentiators – people and technology. With 19 global centers spread across the Americas, Europe, and Asia, they have the resources to support more than 25 languages. Specifically, CSS Corp has more than 1200 CEFR/equivalent B2 certified native language experts for translation and transliteration services, delivering the expertise required for the large-scale language-localization process of maps and geographic information.
Enabling the team is CSS Corp’s Geo.intelli Platform, an assisted automation solution that reduces manual effort and drives process optimization. The solution manages the end-to-end POI conversion process seamlessly.
The POI files for conversion are uploaded in the tool with the click of a button and are translated/ transliterated into a language of choice, all in a matter of seconds. After successful conversion, a pre-defined workflow within the platform routes the resultant files for validation against errors and misses to a team of professional translators and an expert quality analysis team. The teams can make the changes within the tool easily, and the platform continuously learns and improves its dictionary from such interventions. The final version of the consolidated GIS map file can then be downloaded in preferred formats, making it convenient for use across multiple channels.
The key features of the platform that simplify and streamline the POI conversion process include –
- Role-based access control at various levels
- Seamless integration with single enterprise sign-on
- Feature-rich dashboard to track the POI conversion progress and team productivity
- Highly scalable offline ingestion engine which can handle large datasets of POIs
The overall solution for POI conversion is built on CSS Corp’s unique capabilities, such as –
- A high-caliber pool of linguists to handle numerous languages.
- Pre-configured rules for processing POIs and AOIs
- A large corpus of words based on previous experience
- Ingest existing client dictionaries to reuse existing best practices
Some of the exceptional outcomes that the solution has achieved include:
- Over 80% accuracy rate of automated transliteration
- Up to 30% reduction in the manual effort through automation
- Significant savings on the total cost of ownership for clients
Maps in regional/local languages are becoming extremely important, especially with the growth of hyper-local businesses. CSS Corp has been providing organizations of all shapes and sizes with advanced GIS, localization and map-based solutions by utilizing its expertise in technology and people that consistently exceed customer expectations. So, go ahead and build maps that speak the same language as your consumers, with CSS Corp.
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