Team localization

Originally uploaded by niallkennedy.

Yesterday I had a chance to attend MashPit. After much deliberation over what should be tackled, a “self organizing” team that included Cal Henderson, Matt Mullenweg, and myself decided to wrestle collaborative localization. It’s one of those problems that doesn’t get much love because when a team (open source or not) has to tackle it, they do whatever minimum is necessary to make the pain go away. Larger companies just pay bucket-loads to make it disappear.

Clearly, we need something better. Something shared, something in-situ…something usable by real, live people.

In just shy of 4 hours, we went from a bunch of drawings to a working, demo-able system that will let people quickly post translations to a central location, (eventually) import from and export to other localization formats like gettext, and provide developers with a straightforward way to generate pages that let anyone donate translations.

We don’t have a name for the project yet, so suggestions are welcome, and public (anonymous) SVN is available from:

We’ve got a lot of work left to do, but a translation-commons is something that everyone needs. Time to make it happen.


  1. Posted January 18, 2006 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    Sounds like fun! My checkout is croaking though. The first include in init.php should be include(realpath($inc_dir.’/../config.php’)); to resolve the relative path. I’m missing a templates_c directory. Boy oh boy, I want this to work! :-)

  2. Lionel Chollet
    Posted January 18, 2006 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    Suggestions for the project’s name:

    Pinketta – Boxetta – Flaxetta – Irisetta


    Based on Rosetta ; and a rose, by any other name… would still be a flower ;-)

    See ->

  3. Posted January 18, 2006 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

    A couple of us guys at Technorati had this same idea about a year ago and even got a domain. I can pony it up for the cause if ya want. Email me if you’re interested.

  4. Posted January 18, 2006 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    What’re the db table schema?

  5. Posted January 19, 2006 at 12:25 am | Permalink

    Let me check on that. We should have it in SVN to be sure.

  6. Jeremy Dunck
    Posted January 20, 2006 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    BabelZilla is such a collab l10n site, but it’s specific to Moz stuff.

    BabelText? (harking babelfish?)

  7. Posted February 5, 2006 at 12:53 am | Permalink

    But still, shouldn’t there be a database table scheme available somewhere?

  8. Posted February 5, 2006 at 1:26 am | Permalink

    yeah, but I can’t seem to hit the DB from the box that Matt was hosting the demo from. *sigh*

  9. Posted February 7, 2006 at 2:30 am | Permalink

    I’ve tried to email Matt to get it, but no luck so far. Without the table scheme there’s not much use in the SVN ;)

  10. Posted February 7, 2006 at 2:36 am | Permalink

    I caught matt on IM today and was able to get a dump of the DDL. It’s now checked in as langp.sql.


  11. Posted February 11, 2006 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Very nice work. I am creating a website based on best data recovery software.Did you hire someone to do your blog or build it yourself?. Peace, JUAN

  12. Posted February 14, 2006 at 3:55 am | Permalink

    This is quite clearly in need of the name “Langpad”

One Trackback

  1. By Planet WordPress » Blog Archive » Mashpit on January 25, 2006 at 8:54 am

    […] Yesterday I participated in an event called Mashpit with some interesting folks and with Cal and Alex built a version 0.1 of a translation manager, the idea being that people can submit translations for phrases in a moderated wiki-like manner, allowing for community translation of projects large or small. It was a lot of fun and very rewarding to get something functional done in such a short period of time. […]