WordPress Localization

One of the great things about WordPress is that it comes in many languages. WordPress itself and some plugins & themes use a standard method in programming to make this possible. All the terms you see in the WordPress user interface (boh in the Admin and the blog itself) are connected to a central repository – a kind of dictionary , to which additional languages can be added without any change to the code itself.

The actual words used in each language are stored in dedicated files (with a suffix of ‘.mo’ and ‘.po’). To add a new language all you have to do is create a new set of language files. There are applications for editing these language files, which then need to be placed in the WordPress installation (or in the plugin or them installation). It is a fairly simple process (compared to the efforts required in the past for translating a software), but it can be fairly tricky for people who are not technically oriented (though they may be great translators).

I just discovered a wonderful plugin that comes to the rescue and makes translation amazingly simple – meet Codestyling Localization. It gives you access to all of your translation files directly from within WordPress Administration. It’s very easy to use and there are easy to use instruction by the author.

You can use this plugin to quickly and easily make changes to existing translations and to create entire new translations into lanuages which may not be available when you need them. If you do create new translations, you may also want to take the time to submit them to the original authors to be included in future versions, so that others may benefit from your translation work. It’s a great way to give back to the WordPress community – and thanks to this plugin it’s really easy to do.

IMPORTANT: Any changes you make are applied only to your WordPress installation. When you instal new versions – you may lose your changes. Make backup copies of your translation files in case you need to restore them in the future.

NOTE: This only works with Plugins & Themes which are developed using the WordPress language standard.

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