How eBay built a global platform

I have a new article in the current edition of Multilingual magazine, which I co-wrote with Nelson Ng of eBay. It’s about how eBay re-engineered its back-end systems to support Unicode, the universal character-encoding standard.

Unfortunately, this one is subscription-only for now. But the gist is that eBay needed to convert all of its database tables, applications, and HTML to Unicode in order to expand into Asian markets while maintaining maximum compatibility across all its global sites. Considering the scope of eBay’s operations, it was no easy task. In fact, it took years to complete.

It’s a fascinating case study, so if you’re interested in multilingual computing I encourage you to check it out. Multilingual is a print publication, but digital subscriptions give you access to the current issue online immediately.