Help Translate WordPress For Your Readers and Everyone
I find that most English-written blogs offer international language translations, while few foreign language blogs offer translations in other languages. Why?
If you write a WordPress blog in a non-English language, consider adding a web translation Plugin to your blog so English speakers, and those in other languages, can read your blog.
My review of Translation and Multilingual WordPress Plugins may help, but the ones to start with are:
- Global Translator WordPress Plugin by Nothing2Hide uses either or both of the Google Translation or the Babelfish Translation Engines and now has improved caching and other features which makes this one of the most popular free translation WordPress Plugins.
- Angsuman’s Translator Plugin Pro is a one of several of his WordPress Plugins you can buy for top notch translations, and often used by business blogs.
- EHT Translate WordPress Plugin works with Google to provide translation of your WordPress blog posts.
There are a few other WordPress Plugins which use Google’s translation services, which, as many admit, isn’t the best quality of machine translation.
Another one in the early stages of development is the WordPress Plugin for the Worldwide Lexicon Project (WWL) which enables readers to translate posts in a wiki-fashion, allowing them to edit and score translations which improves a blog’s multilingual abilities. It’s interesting as it does not involve direct blogger involvement but relies upon reader participation on the blog, if I understand how it works. I’d love to hear more from those who have actually used this.
If you are using a translation Plugin on your blog, make sure you use a cache Plugin such as WP-Cache WordPress Plugin or WordPress Super Cache Plugin, as the translation can increase the load on your site and database.
Translating Your Own Blog’s Content
If you are fluent in more than one language, why not blog in all the languages? You can translate your own blog posts, or just blog different posts in different languages. Or include specific foreign language text within your blog posts.
Gengo Multi-Lingual Blogger WordPress Plugin, which I reviewed, works for those who blog in more than one language. It does not translate, but makes the process of switching from one language to another in WordPress much easier. It does require some familiarity with WordPress template files and Themes to use and there is the helpful Gengo WordPress Plugin Support Forum.
Polyglot 2.0 helps to make WordPress bilingual, too. It allows easy switching from the different languages and conversion of character codes within the post content. For tips on using this on WordPress 2.1, see Making WordPress Multilingual.
Another multi-language WordPress Plugin is jLanguage. Using bracketed commands around the language text of your choice, the Plugin will automatically help the browser recognize the language characters for better conversion. It will not translate but acts as a aid to convert the letters characters properly, a frustrating problem many bloggers covering multiple languages face.
Helping WordPress Improve It’s International Coverage
If you are fluent in English and other languages, you can help improve the quality of translations and the international nature of WordPress.
WordPress is available in many different languages listed in the WordPress in Your Language article on the WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, along with information on support for WordPress in different languages.
To help translate WordPress, read the Codex article on Translating WordPress. You can also participate in the online translation, volunteer program called translate.wordpress.com to help translate WordPress and WordPress.com structure and code terms and phrases.
If you want to help translate and internationalize WordPress Plugins, read the article by Weblog Tools Collection on “Localizing a WordPress Plugin Using poEdit”, with tips for helping WordPress Plugin authors to make their WordPress Plugin international, adding hooks and features for easy translation options, helping your Plugin cross international borders. See also:
- Weblog Tools Collection – WordPress Translations: mo and po files.
- 6 Tips for Localizing Your WordPress Plugin by Pressed Words
- John Godley’s Localizing WordPress Themes and Plugins
Your assistance is always welcome to help make WordPress more international.
The author of Lorelle on WordPress and the fast-selling book, Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won't Tell You About Blogging, as well as several other blogs, Lorelle VanFossen has been blogging for over 15 years, covering blogging, WordPress, travel, nature and travel photography, web design, web theory and development extensively as web technologies developed.
“I find that most English-written blogs offer international language translations, while few foreign language blogs offer translations in other languages. Why?”
Why? I’m blogging in Dutch, a language spoken by only 22 millions of people (most of them in the Netherlands, and 6 millions – like me – in Flanders, the Northern part of Belgium. It’s hardly possible to imagine that the information you find on my blog can’t be found on an English site, and would someone care to read a badly translated Dutch post, when he/she can also find the same information in good English?
My English isn’t that good, and even I do not like to read a page written in bad English….
As a french blogger, it seems to me not beeing so important to translate blogs in english. Especially for technical ones, related on computers and photography, my two favorite subjets. In fact, the most contents I read in french are in some way “sencond hand” contents, with the initial information having been published first on an english speaking site or blog.
And automatized translations are so ugly, and sommetimes so difficult to understand. Have you ever seen an english user manual from a chinese company transladed in french per software ? Usualy not worth the paper to print it.
well.. it’s easier to translate english into other languages, but it’s hard to translate some other language into english. As a chinese blogger, i often find the translated articles are just jokes.
This is true, but machine translations are improving. They have to improve. This is the future. The more people who embrace it, and the more people willing to spend the time and money to improve it, the better it will become.
Bizarre translations are not limited to translations into English. English gets very mangled when translated into other languages, especially when the writer uses jargon and cliches that just don’t translate.
Just to let you know, I made a plugin recently for WordPress to enable multiple language in WordPress. This allows you to translate your blog “manually” into any language you want and therefore having your blog in multiple languages.
Note: It’s fully compatible with 2.5 and 2.5.1
Interesting. How does it compare with Genko and other multilingual WordPress Plugins?
Regarding Lorelle’s comment that machine translations are the future – that may be so but the future sure isn’t here yet. Only a human translator can capture nuance and tone or even humor. Try running something you wrote through an online free translator. After it’s translated, have it translated back to English. I did this yesterday and “eggs sunny side up” came back as “eggs the side sunned for above”.
I think the most beautiful in google, but have to abide by the rules of spelling