For work, I am proofing a document on what’s called shuweihua in Mandarin. Anybody who speaks the language knows what this is, but I have so far successfully evaded actually translating it into one English word.

The document I’m proofing calls it digitalization. Google suggests digitization.

Merriam Webster defines the former as administering digitalis and the latter as conversion from analog to digital.

Shuweihua is more of a macro concept. It is really about the shift (rather than conversion) from analog to digital communications and entertainment.

Searching Google News, about half of the 30-odd results for digitalization are from Taiwan sources. I still feel unsure about it as a proper translation for shuweihua and am leaning toward digitization.

Is anyone else ready with advice on how to describe this concept in English?

Let me get this right. What you are referring to is a move from using one technology (analogue) for communication and entertainment to another technology (digital). This is the shift from one form to another you referred to.

This makes me think of the phrase

Yes. I think “going digital” is a pretty good summary of the trend.

And “digitalization” seems to be more descriptive of going digital than digitization. But somehow, digitalization is hard on my ear.

It sound too much like an American made up word. :smiley:

Both are right. I’ve come across that one a number of times, and IIRC digitalization is the American version. Personally, I prefer digitization, partly because “digital” means (basically) “made of (binary) digits”, so to make something digital would be to digitize it - make it into digits.