The business category features all blog posts related to all forms of business, from start-ups to entrepreneurs and conglomerates. Most post refer to the business world of translation and localization though.

International Morse Code Alphabet

international morse code alphabet

Learn the international morse code alphabet.

Morse Code is a communication method which represent the letters of alphabet using long and short pulses of light or sound. Each character is represented by a unique sequence of dots and dashes. It is named after its inventor Samuel F.B. Morse who was born in the 1840s. The most famous code is that of SOS •••–––••• which is the internationally recognised emergency signal. There is much debate about the origins of the term SOS, it could mean “save our souls” or “save our ships”. Historically it is believed the SOS signal comes from the fact that it is easily recognisable, 3 short dots followed by 3 long dashes then 3 short dots. The rhythmic pattern makes it easily recognised.

How do you create a good web page?

keyword picture

Writing for the Web: How do you create a good web page?

This is a great question, and we got some great advice from Maryrose Lyons.

“Writing for the Web” was the title of the presentation given as part of the Innovation Dublin lunchtime talk. With over 13 years of experience in this field, Maryrose gave some really great advice.

Top Five Tips

Maryrose covered five main points on “how to write to be read online.”

  1. All about me, me, me
  2. Make text scannable
  3. Make it “skimmable
  4. Lovely links
  5. Social network style

Let’s get down to business…

All about me, me, me

Your web page should be all about the client. Clients don’t want to read that you have the best technology in the world, they just want to solve their problems. Don’t sell drills, sell the perfect hole.

Make Text Scannable

Your page should be easily scannable by the reader. Use graphics to show the key actions such as “Get our best quote” or “Get a quote here!”

Get our best quote.

Make it easy for your customers to understand what you want them to do on each page. It should have a clear headline: simple and to the point. “Drill the perfect hole” instead of “the most cost-effective drill, durable and great for getting the job done.”

In others words, readers should be able to scan your web page quickly when they arrive on it by using title, subheadings etc., so they know what you can do for them.

Make it “skimmable

Similarly, the text has to be skimmed. To help readers, use bold keywords and short words; get to the point. Write 50% less text. For example, it’s better to write ‘so’ than ‘consequently.’

Lovely Links

Make sure your links are clear and simple. Never type “click here.” It’s better to have the link on the important keywords, but not the focus keyword. To read more about style download the presentation.

Social Network Style

If you want people to share your content on social media remember text is short. Twitter is only 140 characters or less, therefore make sure your content can be shared in this space. Keep it short and simple.

See her entire presentation on Slideshare.

Maryrose Lyons is managing director of Brightspark Consulting, a social media marketing company. Brightspark helps clients define and build online strategies.

The STAR Team

Web Awards 2012, Shortlisted

Web Awards 2012, shortlisted

Web Awards 2012, We’ve been Shortlisted

We are absolutely over the moon to tell you that our Irish language website has been shortlisted for the Web Awards 2012.

We have been nominated in the category “An Suíomh Gaeilge is Fearr”, sponsored by Gaelport.

This year we’ve been working really hard on our Irish. We’re in the process of producing and publishing our focail a day videos (still work to do!). We’ve also added Irish to our blog, check out the latest post on the Fada!.

STAR has a keen interest in the Irish language. We provide English to Irish translation services for county councils, public sector bodies and government departments.

Check out the Web Awards site.

The STAR Team

Size of the Language Service Market, 2012

The size of the language Services Market in 2012

Growth of the Language Service Market

How fast is the language market growing? Based on year-to-year changes in revenue and the expected earnings reported by Localization Service Providers (LSPs), Common Sense Advisory a leading industry analyst firm calculates that the language services market will grow by an annual rate of 12.17% in 2012.

The total value of the market for outsourced language services is worth US$33.523 billion in 2012.

The percentage of total market size in in each region of the world in 2012 shows that North America shrinks while Europe and Asia grow.

  • Asia gains significant grounds
    • Asia gains language services market share in 2012. They are largely fueled by China. This is an important step for this part of the world since it is the first time that Asia reaches a double-digit percentage of total market share in this study.
  • Western and Northern Europe keep growing
    • France, Germany and the United Kingdom are the leaders of this trend. These regions shows impressive increases in market share. Meanwhile, Southern Europe still lost out market share overall.

Find more information on the Top 100 LSPs.

The STAR Team

Blog Awards Shortlist, Wish us luck!

Blog Awards Ireland 2012

We’re delighted to tell you our Translation Blog made the shortlist for the Best Blog of and SME category.

It’s great to hear as we work hard to write interesting articles on language and culture, helping you understand the value of translation and boost your international communication skills.

The big night is on 13th of October in Naas. We’re looking forward to seeing how everyone gets on.

The STAR Team

How do you check your website ranking?

Check your website ranking with Alexa

Check your website ranking with Alexa

Check your website ranking / Alexa: An Amazon Company

A common topic we often discuss with customers is their website ranking. They come to us saying they are not getting traffic and are not sure about translation as how will the know if the translated site will get traffic as well?

STAR can help you with your international web traffic, but let’s look at English websites for now as it’s the perfect starting point. SEO and web ranking is a bit of a black art, there is magic and there is some science involved. However, the average user can get some basic information themselves to gauge what’s going on. One such free system is Alexa.

Alexa is own and managed by Amazon, so you know they have a good reputation. It’s not 100% accurate; you have to take it with a pinch of salt.

Alexa tracks users who use their system (free toolbar etc.) to search the Internet. It’s a measure of site’s popularity compared to others.

The good side is that the system is consistent – you get consistent results from a portion of Internet users worldwide. It’s perfect for webmasters and SEO managers helping track whether traffic is improving or not. You should track this every month and see how you are doing.

It can take up to 90 days for some web changes to impact your SEO ranking.

Did you know it typically takes about 90 days for any major change to your website to appear on Google as well?

To use the system, visit Alexa’s site ranking page and enter your URL.

It will tell you roughly what keywords are being used to find your site; how many inbound links you have and your overall traffic ranking across the worldwide web.

Next time we’ll discuss multilingual SEO and how STAR can help you deliver your website in the right language to drive more traffic, and in turn, business to your site.

The STAR Team

Smartphones change Irish way of Life


Smartphones change Irish way of life, finds survey

A recent survey reveals that smartphones are having a real impact on the Irish way of life.

The use of basic mobile phones have already changed Irish daily behaviour and, as a result, their convenience and mobility enables all of us to use them virtually anywhere we go.

Some figures show that:

  • 49% of the Irish population owns a smartphone
  • An increase of 71% by the end of 2012
  • 95% of the users use their smartphone at home whereas 26% use it at school
  • 25% are not addicted to smartphones since 75% can’t leave the house without it
  • 67% think that smartphones are good to pass the time away while waiting. I may be part of the 33% that prefer Sudoku or magazines for they are much cheaper
  • 50% think smartphones make them more modern looking and feel that they should have Internet access on their phone. Does it mean that the remaining 50% should consider themselves out-dated?
  • 77% use their smartphone to take photographs. Are professional photographers becoming an endangered species right now?

Irish smartphone users are multitasking: indeed, they use it while listening to music, watching TV or browsing on the Internet.

They mainly use it to communicate (83%), to stay informed (61%) or for entertainment (89%) purposes.

Obviously networking is one of the most popular activities since 86% of users update and visit their social networks on their phone.

Regarding apps, people have about 29 of them installed on their smartphones with about 9 paid apps installed. 43% will use more apps in the future.

Are you using any Irish apps on your mobile devices?

The STAR Team

View the full statistics on Irish mobile use.

STAR Wins Innovation Award for GRIPS

STAR Grips wins Innovation award

Innovationspreis-IT 2012 / Initiative Mittelstand

STAR GRIPS Wins Innovation Award

GRIPS, STAR’s content management system wins IT Innovation Award in Germany.

The German association, Initiative Mittelstand, supported by the German Federal Commission for Information Technologies and IBM Deutschland GmbH, has recently awarded STAR Group with the IT Innovation Prize for its application GRIPS, selected from over 2,500 entries.

This award acknowledges the GRIPS team’s constant commitment to innovation, a synonym for competitiveness beyond translation services in such fields as the development of content management systems.

STAR is a world leader in corporate language management systems.

GRIPS is a state-of-the-art tool for the management and automated publication of technical information, created to support the entire process of information processing. BMW Motorrad, Ferrari, Evobus, Hilti, GDELS Mowag or Rheinmetall Landsysteme GmbH are some of the renowned companies that trust GRIPS information management system.

GRIPS is based on XML format matrix storage of technical information, allowing the synchronization of the technical information production process with the design and product development processes. GRIPS eases technical copy-writing-related tasks, while minimizing the risk of struggling with incoherence and redundancy errors, thus reducing significantly updating, translation and publishing costs.

The STAR Team

Social Media Awards 2012, Nominated

Social Media Awards 2012 nominated

Social Media Awards 2012, Nomination /Sockies

We have been recently nominated for the Bord Gáis Social Media Awards 2012.

100 judges took part in the shortlist process. The final list will be revealed next week but we are already very pleased to announce our nomination for this national event. We have been nominated in 4 categories:

The winners will be announced at the finale ceremony which will takes place at the Mansion House in Dublin on 17th of May 2012.

Taking part in this special event and being nominated means a lot to STAR. It is the chance to be recognized for our hard work. For those who are following us, you might have noticed that we are indeed very active through our blog, Facebook page, Twitter account and even our YouTube channel to provide our customers and partners with the best tips regarding translation, languages and Irish.

STAR was formed in 2002, since then we do our best to help our customers grow their business. This is why this year STAR has focused so much on social media. We want to inform our customer that we are always here and ready to help their business to grow worldwide.

We already know that the competition will be tough since we are up against Jedward in one of them for instance. View all the nominations and find the latest information on Social Media Awards.

The STAR Team

Are you spamming your clients?

Spamming your clients

Spamming Your Clients

Probably one of the biggest dilemmas for marketing managers today is whether they are seen to be spamming their clients or not. Marketeers have to communicate with current and prospective clients and do so on a daily basis. How do you know if your emails are being caught as spam or are being received favourably by your clients.

A good place to start your education and testing is with the Swiftpage email delivery system. We use the system ourselves and we find it very useful.

Online Deliverability Education

They also provide education online with video tutorials on how best to create spam free emails. Visit Swiftpage email marketing.

The STAR Team