Despite Articulate’s claims that Storyline XLIFF Export/Import is feasible for translation, it is too buggy to be useful even in Articulate Storyline version 2.0. We do not recommend using it. This is unfortunate because XML-based files are normally far more localization friendly than Microsoft Word, which is your second export/import option. So you are left with the second alternative – an MS Word export/import. However, be aware that this format is far from ideal for translation and carries a fair amount of risks.
When you translate a Storyline file, the goal is to only translate the Storyline content while maintaining the formatting and leaving all variables, IDs, HTML code, or developer notes intact. Modifications to the code will cause that the translated file will not import properly (or will not import at all) and modifications to the formatting will create a huge amount of manual post-translation work.
The problem is that in the exported MS Word file there is:
a) no separation between the text and formatting, and
b) the variables, IDs, HTML code, or developer notes are not protected (i.e. they can be easily edited or even erased).
Based on our experience, if you provide the exported MS Word files to translators “as-is”, they WILL modify the formatting and/or code. The second problem is that MS Word itself will add a lot of undesirable formatting and metadata in the background. So you can be almost certain that you will face a great deal of post-translation work with cost and risks attached.
The only way to prevent inadvertent changes and file corruption is to protect all of the formatting and non-translatable content so that you can be 100% sure that the files will remain intact. This means that apart from the translated content, the files will be mirror images of the original sources.
The good news is that preventing Articulate Storyline file corruption is feasible and EzGlobe has a proven methodology to achieve just that. We prevent the errors from happening in the first place and we apply quality assurance processes to assure that indeed nothing became corrupted while in translation.
If you have an Articulate Storyline project and are looking for best ways to localize it then do not hesitate contact us. Request a free evaluation report and a quote.