On a recent trip to Italy, I was a bit surprised by some globalization usability issues I ran into while trying to navigate web sites and applications as a foreign visitor. But before we get to all of that, a little background first.
I’m a bit passionate about web globalization. I began being stirred by global issues like poverty and the environment more than 20 years ago as a late teen – right around the time I was really getting into technology and software in my college coursework. My eyes were opened through several different events to how vast and diverse our world really is. Those interests along with a few international experiences have collided with my decade-plus long career in the web and resulted in a strong personal concentration in web globalization, or as I like to think of it, web usability on a global scale.
Fast forward to Italy. It’s fair to say that I felt pretty confident in my web-user abilities before embarking on the trip. While there, I was accessing various Wi-Fi hotspots using my notebook and all was going just fine for a few days. Then I became a victim of geolocation coupled with poor global navigation.