idioma® at GALA 2023 Dublin
The language of business – The business of language
GALA 2023 Dublin was on March 12th ~ 15th and it was our first time participating in person. I was fortunate to be representing idioma® from our Tokyo office. The flight from Tokyo to Dublin was about 18 hours being the longest duration I had ever experienced. I arrived late at night pulling my two large suitcases waiting for a taxi in the cold windy rainy weather. It then started snowing accentuating this cold damp climate to the next morning.
The day before the conference I participated in the Wicklow Tour organized by GALA. Other participants from various companies around the world filled the buses and together we were off to see this historical site of Ireland. It was a great opportunity to break the ice with other GALA members. After an hour ride we arrived at Glendalough Gleann da Loch where ruins of a monastery remained.
The stone structures were beautiful dating back hundreds to thousands of years.
The surrounding nature was breathtaking with the cool refreshing air and the warm sun at our backs.
The forest especially the moss that covered the trees and stones reminded me of Japan.
The religious connection between Ireland and Japan was evident and I felt that through the massively tall trees and fuzzy furry moss encapsulating the scenery.
We had a traditional Irish lunch of corn beef and cabbage with apple pie for dessert.
The next stop was to the highest waterfall in Ireland.
Our guide had told us the waterfall usually has no water. On its best day you would only see a trickle coming down. Ironically, many visitors see nothing being an anticlimactic experience. It was our lucky day! Because of the melted snow from the other night the waterfall was at maximum flow. As if a dam had been destroyed the waterfall plunged forth with a godly inertia, an energy to topple any massive structure in its path. It was close to impossible to try and approach this magnanimous waterfall. You would be sprayed and splashed all over with your body drenched as if you had jumped in a pool.
The trip ended with us visiting Powerscourt a beautiful historical estate. It is surrounded by lakes and gardens you could walk around enjoying the architecture and flowers.
The welcome reception kicked off soon after our bus had arrived at the hotel. Hundreds of people gathered together speaking all at once. I was nervous and slightly intimidated because of not knowing anybody. While I struggled to find my place I was fortunate to meet many people who were genuinely kind and friendly.
The next morning was the Conference Opening & Keynote.
Learn to Decide and Conquer: Decision Making and Removing Biases was the theme of the presentation. David Siegel was the Keynote speaker who discussed his experiences as a CEO and decision making. There were many nuggets of wisdom to take away from his speech.
Next was off to the GALA Soapbox where presenters shared their questions, data, and experiences to tickle our curiosity and minds to spark discussion in the room. I was intrigued and spoke briefly of my experience how QA can be a subjective experience. I also spoke briefly on Brand Value of language in the case of Italian how other cultures would use famous brands to add value to their product lineup.
For example, Parmigiano Reggiano is protected by Italian copyright but how companies such as Kraft use it to promote their version of powdered parmesan cheese. Being from Japan I also mentioned how Kobe beef is used in the same fashion by companies and restaurants worldwide who want to promote their products as the same premium quality beef. The Soapbox session was thought provoking and made me want to learn more about the world around us.
The GALA dinner that night had activity stations around the vicinity to experience the many facets of Irish culture.
It was a night of food, drink, culture, and dance which continued late into the night. Shut your eyes and see.
The second day was another day of learning and reflection. Engaging and networking with many other industry peers. Getting to know one another from different cultural backgrounds stimulates the mind.
The final day consisted of more presentations with thought provoking subjects. Reflections on Identity, Position, and Differentiation in a Crowded Market. SEO localization and We Cannot Have a Race to the Bottom: A Conversation about the Cost/Payment Structure, Swipe Right or Left? Impacts of the Current Economy on M&A.
The Conference Closing & Keynote was presented by Marco Trombetti from Translated. He explained how humans are key to the advancement of AI and Machine translation. No matter how advanced technology will become the human connections are what we live for.
F. Scott Fitzgerald got down on one knee in a fawning motion and loudly exclaimed, “May I kiss the hand that wrote Ulysses?” Joyce replied, “You may, but you should know that hand has done a lot more than write my novel.” Embarrassingly I thought James Joyce was the author of Great Gatsby. Another opportunity to learn something new.
Céad Míle Fáilte
One Hundred Thousand Welcomes
Thank you GALA and its members for providing a wonderful opportunity to connect and learn.
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