Leveraging existing translations

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    Since there is a fair amount of overlapping strings in the WordPress 3.1.1 (the current version) and WordPress.com, I’ve been looking for efficiencies and wanted to share with fellow translators my findings – and would love to hear your own tips and tricks.

    As GlotPress does not have the fuzzy matching feature yet, I tested the TM catalog creation in Poedit which was a disaster (a lot of really unhelpful matches came up as fuzzies – not even close) – so if you’ve had success with it, I’d love to hear about it. (Unfortunately, I have not found yet an in-depth reference on Poedit that would go beyond describing the basic functionality.)

    Another thing that I tested and that did seem to work: saved the ru_RU.po file with the Russian translation of WP3.1.1 (it was not under http://translate.wordpress.org/projects/wp/3.1.x/ru/default, so I got it from http://ru.wordpress.org/wordpress-3.1.1-ru_RU.zip under wp-content/languages), then went to the Russian WordPress.com GlotPress project (http://translate.wordpress.com/projects/wpcom/ru/default) and imported the .po file via “Import translations” command, which I have access to as the validator.

    It worked, and some 800 strings were imported as approved translations! Upon import, they are stored without a contributor name. I did some quick checks, and fortunately it appeared that no “extraneous” translations were imported. I could not determine if imported translations obsoleted existing translations – did not find any instances of that happening.

    My questions:

    moderators: is importing a .po file from a different WordPress product a safe way to leverage existing translations? I would like to confirm that doing what I described creates no risk for breaking things. Also, do imported translations obsolete existing translations available in GlotPress?

    fellow translators: what shortcuts have you found to speed up your translation process? Any tips and tricks on tools, process, etc that you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them!

    The blog I need help with is jenia.wordpress.com.


    I’ll answer the .org to .com question first:

    WordPress.com is a service built upon the free open-source WordPress.org software, including its translations, which means that we actively encourage superseding the strings in .com with those which exist in .org, but which are far less (as .com as many plugins and extensions developed in-house). That said, don’t forget to repeat the import process for the Multisite and Twenty Ten subprojects, or even the Importers.

    The reason for this is that .org translations are usually under a tighter control from a more qualified translation community than those in .com.

    As to PoEdit, I’d recommend playing around with the translation memory’s settings. I’m now reaching, let’s say, ‘acceptable’ results, but I suspect that it is also a factor of how big the database is, i.e. the bigger it gets, also the more accurate the guessing becomes.



    Thank you, .org translations superseding .com translations totally makes sense. I have successfully imported existing translations from Twenty Ten and Multisite and got 250 additional strings translated.

    This trick should totally be part of the manual for volunteer translators! And I wonder if it would even make sense to “push” translations from dot-org GlotPress projects into those for dot-com? This way, the human factor is eliminated and speeds up the actual translation process. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.


    …it would even make sense to “push” translations from dot-org GlotPress projects into those for dot-com?

    Absolutely. We’d need to iron out a few details (such as translations that only exist on one side of the equation, gathering opinions from translators on both sides, etc.), but it seems perfectly doable.

    I suggest we continue this thread on http://wppolyglots.wordpress.com, does that sound ok?

    And a final tiny note about .org-to-.com: on .com: the system is prepared for replacing multiple instances of a string, i.e. imagining we have “Next” and “Previous” on .org, upon import to .com, all “Next” and “Previous” will be updated, no matter where and how many times they exist (think themes, for instance)


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