Past Meetup

It's Time For a Big Idea: The Human Language Project

Location image of event venue


We'll be in Facebook Building 11. Enter via Building 10, pinpointed on this map: Doors open 6:30 PM.

It’s Time for a Big Idea. It’s Time for the Human Language Project.

In an interactive session with the localization and globalization community in Silicon Valley, Jaap van der Meer will make the case for the Human Language Project: a far-reaching collaboration and sharing among all buyers and providers of language services.

Like the Human Genome Project, which unraveled the secret workings of the human body, Jaap van der Meer proposes fearless sharing of data and open collaborative efforts to crack the language barrier. The translation industry has undergone a paradigm shift every decade since 1980, but none was as big as the one we are facing now.

Hyper-globalization is driving the industry now into the Convergence era: translation will be a utility embedded in every app, device, sign board and screen. Businesses will prosper by finding new customers in new markets. Governments and citizens will connect and communicate easily. Consumers will become world-wise, talking to everyone everywhere as if language barriers never existed.

It will not be perfect, but it will open doors and break down barriers. And it will give a boost to the translation industry, which will be chartered to constantly improve the technology and fill the gaps in global communications.

It’s time for a big idea. It’s time for the Human Language Project. The Human Language Project will be a key enabler for companies to expand their global reach and grow their revenues.

Jaap van der Meer founded TAUS ( in 2004. He is a language industry pioneer and visionary, who started his first translation company, INK, in The Netherlands in 1980. Jaap is a regular speaker at conferences and author of many articles about technologies, translation and globalization trends.

Admission is free for IMUG members and Facebook employees, and $5 for non-members. IMUG membership is only $20 for the first year, $15 for annual renewal, or $100 for lifetime membership. Click here to join, renew or pay a single non-member event fee via PayPal. Cash and checks also accepted at our events.

Please RSVP via Meetup by 5 PM the Monday before the event to help IMUG and our hosts prepare badges for you in advance. After that time it's still OK to RSVP right up to the last minute, as that will help us ensure enough seats for everyone!

Remote access is available via webcast or teleconference. This talk will not be recorded. After you RSVP, please contact us ( for details. We are not currently requiring membership or charging for remote access to our talks, but if you find these useful please consider becoming an IMUG member (

Many thanks to Iris Orriss and Facebook for hosting this talk! Please note that the map link above points directly to the exact building location. This may work better than your car GPS.

The hashtag for IMUG events is #IMUG408, honoring Silicon Valley's main area code. Yes, we'll be in 650 this month, which used to be 415. It's still 408! :-) Follow @i18n_mug: