Creating Multilingual Web Sites


Do you want to reach more people and generate more orders with a multilingual Web site? Do you want to set up your multilingual Web site in a manner that will make localization easier?

This workshop first discusses why businesses should globalize their Web sites and why both customers and vendors will often encounter surprising complexities in the process. In particular, the seemingly simple issue of handing off the Web site content is shown to be quite complex and full of pitfalls.

The language support features of the fundamental Web technologies (HTML, CSS, XML, XSL) are then presented. You will learn how to apply these features to the design of both static ("brochureware") and transactional Web sites.

Are you sure your investment in translating Web pages has not been wasted? Learn how to ensure Web users find the pages available in their language. Learn also how to produce multilingual forms and how to retrieve multilingual data from them.

The workshop wraps up by showing how to design and build a multilingual Web site and with a brief overview of Globalization Management Systems: systems designed to automate Web localization workflow.

Target Audience

This course is intended for web masters, web developers, web designers, web product managers, web testers, basically all stakeholders of your web application.


This workshop provides attendees with detailed knowledge of the internationalization features of HTML and related technologies, as well as recommended best practices on how to combine them into a usable and maintainable multilingual Web site.


The agenda described below is for a one-day session.


There are no pre-requisites for this workshop, but prior attendance to the "All About Internationalization" workshop will provide a deeper understanding.


  1. Business And Philosophy
    • Why do we do develop multilingual Web sites?
    • What is the ROI?
    • Why is it difficult?
    • The fall of English; the complexity of code
    • Ignorance & Underestimation
  2. The Web Building Blocks

A quick review of the basic web technologies to bring everyone to the same level.

  • Global Interoperability
  • Where are the Web standards?
  • HTML & CSS
  • HTTP & URL
  • Client-Side & Server-side scripting
  1. Connecting Customer & Vendor
    • "Just Make it International"
    • "Just Grab It"
    • The Customer-built Translation Tool
    • The content life cycle vs. translation
    • Establishing a sustainable localization process
  2. Character Sets and HTML
    • Brief review of character sets and Unicode
    • Character Set Identification
    • Character Set Selection
    • What can go wrong?
    • IANA 'CharSet' Registry
    • Browser Priorities For CharSet
    • Foreign "Language" Text Entry: HTML escaping mechanisms
    • Transcoding & the Reference Internationalization Model
    • Early Uniform Normalization
  3. Language Identification, Negotiation & Navigation

Getting the user to the right page!

  • Why language information?
  • Language Tags in HTML (and XML)
  • Language Selection
  • Simple Language Selection
  • Automated Language Selection
  • Designing language selection controls
  1. Multilingual Forms, Links, and Style Sheets
    • Forms and Query Parts
    • Multilingual Form Example
    • CSS Font Specification
    • <FONT> is Harmful
    • Ruby
    • Style Sheets & Character Sets
    • Style Sheet Authoring
  2. Designing the Multilingual Site
    • IDN: International Domain Name
    • IRI/IRL: Multilingual URI/URL
    • Organizing Multilingual Files & Directories
    • Language tags vs. language directories
    • Managing Localizables
    • Localizables: Identification & Externalization
    • Localizables: Baking vs. Frying Content
    • Managing risk vs. single executable
  3. Web Localization Workflow

The steps of web localization and how they can be automated by Globalization Management Systems.

  • Content Interface
  • Workflow Interface
  • Change Detection
  • Job Creation
  • Extraction
  • Segmentation & Leveraging
  • Costing & Approval
  • Work Distribution
  • Translation
  • Review
  • Functional Testing
  • Work Completion
  • Delivery & Notification
  • Billing & Collecting
  • Job Archival


Each attendee will receive a 200+ page booklet, with ample room for notes, complete with table of contents and glossary. The booklet is designed to serve as a practical easy-to-use reference “book” for regular use during an internationalization project.

Pierre Cadieux

About our Instructor – Pierre Cadieux

Pierre Cadieux is a veteran with over 35 years' experience in internationalization of software, Web sites and mobile devices. He has taught internationalization at the Université de Montréal. Pierre has been technology editor for the LISA newsletter, VP Technology at ALIS and director of technology at Bowne Global Solutions.

At ALIS, Pierre pioneered the transparent handling of Arabic and Hebrew languages and created the core bi-directional technology licensed by Microsoft.

As Director of Localization Technology at Bowne Global Solutions, he carried out research and analysis on multilingual Web sites and published the first generic model of Globalization Management Systems.

Additionally, Pierre holds a B. Sc. and M. Sc. in Computer Science.