I don't know how I managed to miss this with all the "What's New in NAV 2015" and "What's New in NAV 2013" workshops I was preparing over the last few years, but I did.
Recently, a colleague pointed me to this MSDN article on NAV: "How to: Add Translated Strings for Conflicting Text Encoding Formats". Once I have read midway into the artice, I realised - this feature is so much more than what the title says! What it really should say, is -
Take a look at the article MSDN, which has got all the details needed. What it does not emphasize enough, I think, is that after you implement this NAV translation approach, you get:
Here's a summary of what you need to do to implement this.
Locate your NAV service tier folder, and create a subfolder named "Translations" there, i.e.:
"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Dynamics NAV\80\Service\Translations"
I was playing around with this feature and decided to abuse it a little bit, by placing 4 different languages into the same (ENU) language layer. You know, just to prove a point that you can do it now. Here are the results - English, Swedish, Russian and Japanese captions displayed on the same page, side by side:
I am not sure why Microsoft is not advocating this as a major feature - maybe it has something to do with a vague reference to the possible performance issues (mentioned at the end of the MSDN article) Maybe the implementation of this feature behind the scenes is not solid enough. In any case, we are going to use this in a huge upgrade project we are currently implementing. If we run into any issues, I will update this article.