After working internationally for sixteen years, I’ve found a few online tools and phone apps that are really helpful for connecting across languages, time zones, and contexts. Here are my top three:
Put in your location, and the location of all those you want to meet with, and this website and phone App helps you find a time that works for people in many time zones. It’s also a good reference for knowing what time it is in the place you’re calling so that you don't wake them up! (SIA Board meetings are held early in the morning in California and the evening in Kenya and Uganda.)
Copy and paste your text into the box, and the site will automatically translate it into another language. The translations have been steadily improving, and it is good enough for me to translate the emails from our Francophone grant partners and connect with them on a deeper level. The Google Translate App can also use your phone’s camera to scan and automatically translate text on a sign or printed document. Google Translate has English, French, Swahili, and more, but it doesn’t have Kirundi yet!
3. Rome to Rio
Find out the many ways to get from one place to another using Rome 2 Rio. Unlike websites that only find flights between two cities, this one will show you a mix of modes of transportation, including train and bus options.
*Bonus! Another SIA-related resource I love is ECHOCommunity, a database of information about agricultural practices, including composting, post-harvest storage, and marketing. They have resources in English, French, Swahili, and Kinyarwanda.
What websites or Apps do you love when you’re connecting internationally?