Friday, May 17, 2013

Mozilla Localization Makes a Positive Social Impact

Mozilla brings power of the web into ordinary people's hands. Every day I spend countless hours working with volunteer communities around the world to translate Firefox web browser. Reading Sudheesh Singanamalla's blog post about his encounter with a farmer in rural India was such a touching experience.

A Localization journey - A Farmer's tale - A Delightful Experience

It was on my way back in a cramped out bus, travelling researching about language changes and variations within the state of Andhra Pradesh, that I sat next to a man, quite old.

Sudheesh and the old man

Me : What do you use in the internet? How do you talk to your son?
Old man: I go to Rajat's Net Cafe nearby by house and then talk from there on Google (meant Google+)
Me : Do you know how to read English and understand which button to click and so on?
Old man : Oh, i don't know English, but i use it in Telugu. The shop guy Rajat has seen me since he was small, so after my son went to Delhi, he separately bought a Telugu keyboard so that i can be using the keyboard.
Me: Okay, but then how do you read the information on the computer screen? Isn't that in English?
Old man : (Laughs) Don't you know, there is this software something called Firefox, it is in Telugu.
Me : Really? Can you tell me how the software looks?
Old man : You should know more, you're an engineering student but if you ask i'll tell you, its a small thing like this earth picture but a small cat , orange in colour is holding it.
Me: (smiling crazily) You know how to use it in Telugu?
Old man : Yeah, its not hard, I know how to read Telugu and also know how to use mouse, so clicking gets me the job done.

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