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Mahara Translation Tool

anonymous profile picture
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Posts: 48

30 August 2010, 17:45

I've been thinking about improving the way Translations are developed for Mahara - at the moment if someone wants to Translate Mahara into another language they must grab a copy of the Languate Translation Gui and install it on thier site.

Translators aren't usually Developers - so it requires someone with a knowledge of Mahara the ability to install it and the ability to add the Translation Gui code to their site. The translation must then be packaged and sent to us for inclusion.

I think there are a couple of options to improve this.

We use Launchpad for our bug tracker and packaging/distributing Mahara Releases - they also have a translation tool To use their Translation tool would require significant changes to the way we store/use lang strings in Mahara. They do have a large number of translators(51527) who wouldn't need to install/use Mahara to perform translations which could potentially increase the number of translations available with Mahara,

AMOS is a language translation tool written by David Mudrak as a plugin to Moodle 2.0 which provides Translators a nice interface for translating Moodle language packs (Mahara uses the same method to store language strings as Moodle) and has some really nice features including tracking changes to english language strings in git - more info here:
David is currently working on Google Translator integration and other community level tools are also planned.

If we decided to use AMOS then we wouldn't need to change a lot in core Mahara code - it would mean we would set up a new Moodle 2.0 site as our Translation tool, something like and modify AMOS to look for Mahara lang files instead of Moodle ones.

Obviously there are also other Translation tools around as well - but to use these would require significant changes to Mahara code like those required for Launchpad - personally I like the idea of using AMOS a lot more - I like the featureset and I think retaining control of the translation interface is really useful - we have a lot more ability to influence changes to the interface to suit us and our translators - more than we would have by using something like Launchpad.

Interested to hear others thoughts?

anonymous profile picture
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Posts: 808

31 August 2010, 18:54


I don't think we'll find any time in the near future to convert Mahara language packs over to gettext & launchpad.

So if it's easy and quick to modify amos to work with Mahara and get a translation site up & running, then I'm all for it.

anonymous profile picture
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Posts: 338

01 September 2010, 4:14

Hello Thank you for raising the issue, Dan. I was meant to write a post about it in the Translation Forum, but I have been delaying it because of workload. As Dan mentioned, user-friendly translation tools are very much needed for Mahara. The problem is not translating the language package from scratch, but maintaining language packages between versions, which means that there has to be an easy way to spot and update changes in language files. This is, at least, the main problem that we have for the Spanish language package. I used the first versions of Adminlang, but I didn't find it very useful, as the software didn't find html files (I believe that David corrected that in next versions) Furthermore, although I am an Ubuntu user more or less confident now, I found very difficult to install Adminlang with Windows Vista, when I was translating Mahara. To identify changes in the language package, I was using a ssh script developed by Inyaki Arenaza. I used for updating the language package from v.1.1 to 1.2. However,somebody has reported that it is failing when comparing files between 1.2 and 1.3. At the Spanish Community somebody suggested Meld,a browser for diff, which I haven't tried it yet. I am going to re-foward this post to the Translation Forum, because I would like to know what tools other translators are using. If we are using GIT as VCS, the idea is to have a tool integrated with GIT that allows us to easily spot and update changes. So maybe it is worthy developing Adminlang. Regards
anonymous profile picture
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Posts: 31

17 November 2010, 23:56

The Language Translation Gui Dan Marsden mentioned is for mahara 1.2.4. Is it possible to install Gui only to mahara 1.3.3? The developer of the GUI seems to have no time to upgrade the version.


Jong-Dae Park

Ruslan Kabalin's profile picture
Posts: 146

19 January 2011, 8:11

Hi Jong-Dae, Mahara GUI Translation tool has been updated to 1.3 stable.

anonymous profile picture
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Posts: 1

08 July 2013, 19:49

I suggest you also take a look at It's a nice translation tool with a simple interface and plenty of useful features.

Kristina Hoeppner's profile picture
Posts: 4409

08 July 2013, 22:40

Hello Vanessa,

Thank you for the tip. We've been using Launchpad for some time now. It allows you to translate directly there or you can download the files and use your favorite translation software. I have Poedit installed, but probably don't use most of its features as I don't do much translating.




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