In April 2016, TAUS returned to China after a couple of years absence. Being back in Beijing opened new perspectives on translation in China that many of us had perhaps not expected. China typically copies what others have already built and done before them. Fast trains are modeled to the TGV in France, electric cars are inspired by Tesla, and fashion in China closely follows the trends around the world.
We also discovered that most language service providers in China are not yet using Translation Memory (TM) software and it was implied that further developments cannot be made until they are all on board with TMs. But what if they skip this TM phase altogether and jump right into much more advanced technologies and platforms? What if the magnitude and pressure to translate everything in a market like China are so great that old tools and tricks simply do not suffice?
The evolution path covering fifty years in the translation industry that TAUS has pictured illustrates that we are entering the Convergence Era: technologies, services and business models are converging to form completely new and compelling solutions for companies, governments and citizens who are lost in languages and translation. Pactera, CSOFT, UTH International, GTC Tech, Tmxmall, Lingosail, all Chinese translation companies, showed that they are (getting) ready to meet new demands from increasingly open and globalizing markets. And by the way, translation memory wasn’t mentioned at all, or perhaps just on the sidelines…
Now in March 2017, TAUS will be back in China again with a TAUS Game Changers Innovation Contest at LocWorld Shenzhen. This contest was held a few times before and many interesting startups or more established companies with innovating new ideas and perspectives have won the coveted TAUS award. We are curious to see what the Chinese market will bring forward. The future is a world without language barriers. How we are getting there is different in different places.
China has its own characteristics. The needs are more intense. Access restrictions on some western internet services may in fact create a fertile environment for blue sky thinking and surprising innovation. Think how WeChat became a universal app for chat, social media, payments and much more (WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, PayPal, all in one). The Belt and Road government-funded program pushes Chinese companies to open up and communicate better with the world.
We invite both insider and invader innovators, small and large companies, startups and established players, to come to LocWorld Shenzhen and participate in a contest for the best innovator. In a pecha-kucha style the contenders will present their product. The audience will vote for the best innovator of the "TAUS Game-Changer Innovation Awards" and the winners will receive their special TAUS Innovation Award during the closing ceremony of LocWorld Shenzhen.
We are now collecting proposals to present in the TAUS Innovation Contest as well as the Translation Technology Showcase at LocWorld Shenzhen.