New on Our Website: Japanese

Last year when Worksight Magazine toured our clients’ offices to do research for their Special Edition profile of O+A published in July, it marked a new chapter in our long-standing affinity for all things Japanese. Editor-in-Chief Shotaro Yamashita and his team of journalists, photographers and translators turned a few days at O+A into a comprehensive survey of our work and an insightful analysis of 21st century workplace design.

As a follow-up to that recognition, we are pleased to debut a landing page for the new Japanese version of our website.  Anyone picking up a copy of Worksight at a newsstand in Tokyo, may now go to , click on  JAPANESE and start exploring our design world in that language. At the moment only our landing page is translated, but we hope to put up additional pages soon. Not in Japan? No worries. You can view the translated page in all of its glory here:

Because O+A doesn’t at this time have Japanese speakers on staff, we reached out to Ru Policarpio at Ru Communications in Los Angeles to turn this landing page into something readers in Japan could enjoy. Ru’s company specializes in “transcreation,” the process of transferring copy from one language to another with the nuances intact. It’s an approach that eschews literal translation and the puzzling or comically off-kilter text that often results, combining instead translation with creative writing much as a literary translator does.

From a graphics perspective we find the Japanese script particularly appealing, maybe because divorced from its meaning it is pure design.  Imagine this English text not as words and thoughts, but as an assembly of abstract icons. Presumably that’s how Japanese followers have been viewing our website for years. We’re happy they will finally have an opportunity to read the commentary that goes with the pictures. And we’re especially happy to be reaching out to another part of the world where design is an important factor in every aspect of life.

Our thanks to Ru Policarpio and Yoko Drain on the translation team and to David Kerr and Gwyn Fisher on the website activation team for getting this first page of what we hope to be many up and

ランニング.  (Google assures us that’s Japanese for “running”).