[development] collectigng i18n use cases, and systems to learn from

Gabor Hojtsy gabor at hojtsy.hu
Wed Oct 4 20:52:51 UTC 2006

Hello World,

It is now official that I am going to attempt to write my diploma about 
Drupal Internationalization. I have confirmation from my university and my 
consultant there that I will work on Drupal i18n as my DIY project in this 
semester (10-17 weeks) and then the semester coming after that, preparing 
my diploma. To make this diploma worthy, I need to do this *right* (and I 
also need to be somewhat self-focused, so that I can show that *I* have 
done significant work in the project, not just showing off with what the 
community produced). That said, I plan to go through

1.) deep evaluation of how some of the other systems do i18n,
2.) collecting use cases in which Drupal i18n could be used, and 
abstracting some common stuff out of these
3.) look into how the relevant parts of Drupal are built up (dirty details 
of parts possibly affected by i18n, without care about how an actual 
implementation would affect them)
4.) study of previous Drupal i18n efforts, including all modules providing 
such functionality and previous approaches of them
5.) higher level suggestions about possible implementation strategies
6.) once there is consensus, coordinate implementation of the actual 

Once again, note that since I aim at this being my diploma topic, I need 
to do it according to the "school book" (which should help the Drupal i18n 
project be as throuroughly thought out and discussed as possible, but 
would take more time to get to the actual implementation). Also my need to 
produce results *myself* does not mean I should not work closely with the 
community. The above plan has several connections to the community, 
starting from collecting a list of i18n capable systems to study to 
getting use cases and discussing implementation strategies. I itend to 
do this 'in the open', so everyone can see what is going on, and can 
benefit from the progress.

I am also not starting this with a disconnect to existing work done 
(namely Jose and others contributing to the i18n.module), but since there 
were a lot of debate around the approach taken there, I would like to take 
a step back, and provide a solid base for the soon to be core code with 
actual use cases and existing system comparisions. It could turn out that 
the current i18n implementation stands still, or it could result in a 
better implementation. Time will tell.

I will have weekly meetings with my consultant at the university, who 
demands that I show up with some work done, so I'd better start and do 
what I can :) What you can do to help bring this forward first is to join 
the i18n group at groups.drupal.org and second to take part in any of the 
two community feedback requests I have put up.

I would like to start with collecting your input in two areas. First if 
you know of a system which is possible to set up 'at home' (ie. on a usual 
Windows or Linux server) and you already know of its good i18n 
capabilities (mostly content translation related features), please tell us 
about it. Second if you have some use case you already tried to use Drupal 
i18n in (or any other software with i18n capabilities for that matter), 
you could provide a use case.

   Suggest a system:   http://groups.drupal.org/node/1544
   Provide a use case: http://groups.drupal.org/node/1545
   What's i18n?        http://groups.drupal.org/node/1543
   The i18n group:     http://groups.drupal.org/i18n

I think it is better to comment on these nodes or add new nodes there in 
case of use case collection, but if you have anything pressing you need to 
ask/discuss/say here, just do so.


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