[pmwiki] Re: [Pmwiki-users] pmwiki localization ?

Patrick R. Michaud pmichaud
Tue Aug 5 02:42:09 CDT 2003

On Tue, Aug 05, 2003 at 09:38:09AM +0200, Bernhard.Weichel at t-online.de wrote:
> But if we also want to translate the pages (not only PmWiki documentation
> but also use PmWiki for multilingual Websites) then we should maintain the
> relationship between pages somewhere else, perhaps in specific markup.

Ah, I think this is a decision best left to the site administrator.
For some sites it may make sense to have pages in different language groups
have identical titles; for other sites it may be better to have differing
titles.  PmWiki doesn't have to impose a policy here.

> Using language groups sounds reasonable, in particular if one of these
> days we see a page fallback approach. But then we should also consider
> group customization which should not be duplicated manually ...

I'm hoping that the new i18n and translation feature will reduce the
need for duplication of group customizations...

> > Anyway, we're not committed to any particular approach at this point,
> > and I figured it was more important to get something started for
> > testing/experimentation than to worry too much about having it be the
> > exact final implementation.  If we decide a change needs to be made we
> > can still make it without too much work involved.
> To be honest, I am willing to contribute many German translations. But I
> hesitate to doing it without an imagination of the future direction.
> Even if we change that direction, it is less work to migrate one approach
> than to maintain multiple uncoordinated approaches.

A _very_ reasonable concern.  To be honest, I didn't necessarily expect
to see _all_ of the PmWiki documentation translated--I figured we'd be
doing good just having translations for the most commonly used ones
such as WikiWord, TextFormattingRules, TipsForEditing, etc.  So I'm
both surprised and pleased to see the interest in providing complete

The first versions of the French translations of the PmWiki documentation
were using the English page titles, and to me it looked like it was making
the documentation itself overly complex--lots of [[EnglishTitle French Title]]
links.  And I think that it ought to be possible for the titles to appear
in the appropriate language.  So I suggested trying it with French titles,
figuring we can come up with mechanisms to solve mapping problems later
if/when we need them.  

Now that there are quite a few documentation pages that have been
translated to French, perhaps people can look at that set and see if it's 
going to work out or not.  My intuition says that this is the way to go--
however, I have certainly be wrong before.  :-)

Mainly, at this point I don't want to personally declare that 
non-English documentation has to be organized a certain way or
to try to impose standards that should be followed in all translations.  
I can conceive that in some languages (e.g., Japanese, Chinese, Korean)
it may be better to always use the English titles, while in other
environments the native language titles would be better choices.  So
I think flexibility may be important.  Somehow I don't think it's 
necessary for all of the translations to be exactly the same--
some languages may end up with only a few key pages translated, while
in others may have translations of the complete documentation.  Who knows?
But for any particular language the people who likely know what's best 
are the ones doing the translating, and certainly whoever is putting
in the work to build the pages should have the major say in how they 
are put together.  

And if someone disagrees enough with the results--hey, it's a wiki, just 
revise it!  :-)


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