Translatewiki.net is a localisation platform for translation communities, language communities, and free and open source projects. It started out with localisation for MediaWiki. Later support was added for MediaWiki extensions, FreeCol and other free and open source projects. See the complete list of supported projects.
Translatewiki.net is not part of the Wikimedia Foundation projects, nor of any foundation or open source project. It is run by Nike and Siebrand, who are both developers and have considerable experience in i18n and L10n, as well as other staff members. The translation functionality is provided by the MediaWiki extension Translate. This wiki always contains experimental code, and may be broken occasionally. Please be patient, problems are usually dealt with quickly. Issues can be reported at the support page.
- Most contributors are already familiar with using wiki software. If you are new to wiki software then you can learn the basics and find help on how to edit on MediaWiki.org.
- Find out how the translators work at this introduction to translating.
- Technical information on the software currently used by translatewiki.net.
- Translatewiki.net produces statistics to track progress in translating, by language and by project. Explore the statistics and other information on the general statistics page.
Why use translatewiki.net
- The best translation tool available on the web. All localisation updates happen on an easy interface, and there are people around who can help translators. When making a translation, hints to understand its correct meaning and use are provided, as well as suggestions from translation memory/machine translation services.
- No particular privileges required, everyone can contribute. Everyone who can contribute in a language (see below) is allowed to help with the localisation of that language.
- Keeping track of changes is easy. Untranslated messages are not the only easily found: whenever the source text changes, the affected translations are tagged for easy identification. Translators do not have to spend time digging what needs doing.
Enable your software project on translatewiki.net if it's not yet.
Overview of translatewiki.net method
- On translatewiki.net translators translate the interface of software for products where the English text strings have been isolated from the code and have been organised into individual "messages".
- When a new project joins, the English source messages are imported. Further new English messages are imported from time to time.
- Translations can be made for each message in a separate subpage of the English original for each language, /xxx for language code xxx.
- Sub-pages named /qqq are used for message documentation. The documentation is written manually and is usually of better quality where good communication exists with the original software developer team. If source code comments are part of a software project, these are also displayed in the translation interface.
- Translators make suggestions to improve or correct an original English message, or adapt it to support localisation. If agreed, these are either implemented by translatewiki.net members who are also developers on the relevant project, or reported to the project developers.
- Completed translations for each language are "committed" to the projects by translatewiki.net staff, as soon as the total number of translations for a project in that language has passed the threshold agreed for that project. For frequency of committing and thresholds see the project pages.
- The software release of translations which have been committed to a project is controlled and executed by the project administrators and is out of the hands of translatewiki.net.
- Translators working on MediaWiki also translate special page names, magic words and namespaces, using the page Extended MediaWiki translation.
- When a new language is set up at translatewiki.net, items localised at the start include the script and its direction and a fallback language; other localised items can include date/time format, number format, and PLURAL, GRAMMAR and GENDER functions. Convergence with CLDR localisation data is being considered. At present the only data taken directly from CLDR to translatewiki.net, and on to MediaWiki, are localised language names.
Copyright and disclaimers
Use the translations in translatewiki.net at your own risk. They are intended to be useful but translatewiki.net cannot guarantee the validity of the content found here.
Translatewiki.net and its editors do not provide any warranty on the contents whatsoever, whether expressed, implied, or statutory, including, but not limited to, any warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose or any warranty that the contents will be error-free.
Translations by translators are licenced CC-BY 3.0, and derivative works may also be licenced under the licences of the respective Free and Open Source projects the translations have been or will be added to. Content of user pages are considered to be "All rights reserved" by the author. All other content is licenced CC-BY 3.0 unless a different licence or copyright is stated explicitly.
Translatewiki.net started during 2006 as a test wiki, developed by Nike, in collaboration with Gangleri, as an internationalisation tool for the localisation of the MediaWiki software. It started under the name Betawiki, which became translatewiki.net at the beginning of 2009, following the site being moved to virtual server hosting under its own domain name, on 9th November 2007. By October 2007 translatewiki.net was contributing to localisation in around 70 languages, which by June 2010 had grown to 329 languages. How the number of languages has grown is visible in the table of translation milestones passed for MediaWiki. By January 2010 an upgrade was needed to the server capacity, to cope with the increase in activity. Netcup has generously hosted translatewiki.net since November 2007.
Other free and open source projects have gradually been added to translatewiki.net, starting with FreeCol in August 2007. By June 2010 the number of projects supported has grown to 16.
Contributors to translatewiki.net are all volunteers, except for one staff member who receives funding for part of his time (see funding below). Developers, administrators and translators were recruited initially from MediaWiki projects, especially Wikimedia. Most of our contributors still arrive here via MediaWiki, but with more projects arriving all the time, MediaWiki is no longer the only source of contributors. By June 2010, the number of registered translators is 1,860.
In collaboration with Stichting Open Progress and FUDforum, translatewiki.net has arranged several translation rallies with bounties for translators available, to improve the localisation of MediaWiki and FUDforum.
- In 2008 the Dutch NGO Hivos provided funding via Stichting Open Progress. The grant was to be used to provide bounties for translations in a list of 70 to 80 languages spoken in Africa, Asia, and Latin America that had a sizeable number of speakers, but insufficient support in MediaWiki.
- At the end of 2008 an end of year translation rally open to all translators was held.
- During August 2009 another translation rally was organised, funded by Wikimedia Nederland, the Dutch Wikimedia chapter.
- Wikimedia Nederland also funded the 2009 end of year rally.
The aims of translatewiki.net are described on the Introduction. Technological aids to translators are described on the Technology page. These aids are continually being expanded and improved in order to make the translation work as efficient as possible. Current site needs and development are described on Issues and features.
- Translatewiki.net is kindly hosted by Netcup – webspace and vServer, at their expense since November 2007, with upgrades in February 2008, January 2010 and October 2013.
- Stichting Open Progress and others have from time to time organized funding for translation rallies to improve the localisation of MediaWiki and others, as explained above.
- Since October 2009 the Wikimedia Foundation have contracted Siebrand to work about one day a week on translatewiki.net.
People behind translatewiki.net
Core team members are involved almost daily running translatewiki.net. They also have access to the servers and are responsible for making things run with as few problems as possible. For more information please consult their individual user pages.
- Founder, mostly development work
- Community manager, project coordinator, developer
- Translation committer for MediaWiki, developer
We also depend on the work done by other members of our community:
- Gangleri – early visionary, no longer active
- GerardM – Ambassador, publicity using direct contact, blogs, StatusNet, Twitter
- All contacts in individual projects
- All translators and other members of this project
All contributors are organised into various groups, each group having its own privileges. In common with other wikis, people who register on the wiki are called Users. Users are automatically confirmed 4 days after registering, allowing them to send e-mails to other users. Administrators have more privileges, mainly concerned with protecting the site from vandalism. Bureaucrats have some more privileges, including granting and removing normal user rights, but are granted bureaucrat status by members of the Staff group. Bots are user accounts which can perform tasks automatically. The Import right, allowing a user to import pages from other wikis, is rarely used here.
In addition to these usual groups, translatewiki.net also has user groups special to its purpose. The Translators can edit in protected namespaces, using the translate interface. Some translators can work offline on their translations. The Staff group are the overall managers of this site. They import the messages to be translated and commit completed translations to the projects which use translatewiki.net. They can amend the English source messages directly on some projects, including MediaWiki. They manage all aspects of the software used here.
Contact usSupport. If you prefer live discussion then try out our IRC channel #mediawiki-i18n at freenode. Not preferred, but if needed for security or privacy reasons, you can use e-mail as a method of contact at "translatewiki AT translatewiki DOT net" - replace "AT" with "@" and "DOT" with ".", and remove spaces as well from the e-mail address.
- You can discuss issues concerning a particular language with its translators on the talk page of the language portal.
- You can discuss issues concerning a particular project with its supporters and the developer liaison on the talk page of the project page.
- You can discuss issues with individual users on their user talk page, or by e-mail (click on the e-mail link in the sidebar on a user page), if they have chosen to allow e-mail.