Welcome to the Polyglots Contributor Handbook!
Within the chapters of this translator’s handbook, you’ll find everything you need to localize and internationalize WordPress into your language. We’re still working to bring over content from other pages, but enough content is here to get your started.
What is Internationalization?
Internationalization and localization (commonly abbreviated as i18n and l10n respectively) are terms used to describe the effort to make WordPress (and other such projects) available in languages other than English, for people from different locales, who use different dialects and local preferences.
The process of localizing a program has two steps. The first step is when the program’s developers provide a mechanism and method for the eventual translation of the program and its interface to suit local preferences and languages for users worldwide. WordPress developers have done this, so in theory, WordPress can be used in any language.
The second step is the actual localization, the process by which the text on the page and other settings are translated and adapted to another language and culture, using the framework prescribed by the developers of the software. WordPress has already been localized into many other languages (see our list of teams for more information).
This handbook explains how translators (bi- or multi-lingual WordPress users) can go about localizing WordPress to more languages.
About the Team
The polyglots team is responsible for ensuring WordPress is available in dozens of languages and many more regions. It’s a big job, which is why we need help from native speakers of many languages to make it possible.
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[Discuss translating WordPress and link to relevant subpages.]
To ease the localization of software, a number of projects have been created, including one homegrown for localizing WordPress: GlotPress.
While we recommend you use GlotPress for your translating needs, you’re free to use other software for the actual translation of WordPress, including Gettext directly and PoEdit. Ultimately, however, you’ll need to use GlotPress for the final creation of the WordPress package as well as for managing translations of other software, like plugins and themes.
Rosetta Sites & Forums
[Introduction to Rosetta Sites & Forums]
Throughout this handbook, we’ll use a few terms that you might want to familiarize yourself with.
- Internationalization: As mentioned above, internationalization is the method in which we make WordPress available in different languages and regions.
- Localization: This term is often used interchangeably in this handbook with internationalization.
- Locale: A locale (as opposed to “local”) is the combination of a language and a regional dialect. Locales often refer to countries. For example, Portuguese (Portugal) and Portuguese (Brazilian). The default locale for WordPress is English (U.S.).