Translations

Translate Ubuntu and make it available in everyone’s own language

We believe that every computer user should be able to use their software in their language of choice. As an Ubuntu translator you can put your language skills to work by translating Ubuntu from English to your language. Use Launchpad and your browser to translate free software online with an easy to use, wiki-style interface and make it possible for users to naturally use Ubuntu in their own tongue.

You choose how much you want to get involved: from submitting a few translation suggestions to joining a translation team and becoming a full-fledged Ubuntu Translator. The range of opportunities for helping to improve Ubuntu’s native language support is broad: translating applications, drafting translation terminology and guidelines, filing and fixing internationalization bugs, participating in discussions and helping other translators, providing internationalization support to applications are just a few examples.

Five reasons to get involved as a translator:

  1. Make Ubuntu accessible in your language – enable users to work with Ubuntu in their language of choice.
  2. Promote the use of your language – being Free Software, Ubuntu can be translated to almost any language. From day one you can spread the use of your language in IT, the Internet and in social life through the Ubuntu platform and community, without depending on anyone else.
  3. Learn about other languages – join the global Ubuntu Translations community and get involved in a rich and diverse translator community from all over the world.
  4. Translate collaboratively – use Launchpad Translations, the online translation tool for Ubuntu and other projects. With it, you can easily translate software and build translation communities without the need for special tools or in-depth technical knowledge on translation technology.
  5. Get experience with internationalization technology – if you are interested in the underlying technology for Ubuntu translations, you can also get involved at the technical level by adding or improving natural language support for applications, fixing bugs or providing better font or input method support.

Five steps to get started

One of the key values in Ubuntu is the low entry barrier for contribution, so that participating in improving Ubuntu can be both easy and fun. Therefore you won’t need much knowledge to start translating from day one:: there is no need to install special tools and no previous technical knowledge is required. You’ll be using Launchpad, an easy to use yet powerful online translation tool.

Here are the five steps to start translating Ubuntu:

  1. Create a Launchpad account – You’ll be using Launchpad to submit translations. Create a Launchpad account
  2. Find an app or some messages to translate – Look for some untranslated messages in Ubuntu. Go to the Ubuntu translations page. Note that the templates listed on these pages are sorted by priority, so strings in templates at the top are more visible.
  3. Enter translation suggestions in Launchpad – Your first translations will need to be peer reviewed, but you can start submitting translation suggestions straight away
  4. Get in touch with a reviewer to accept or amend your suggestions – Translation teams ensure the quality of translations by reviewing suggestions. On every translation page there is a link to the team. Click on it and learn how to get in touch with them to review your suggestions
  5. Join a translation team – If you want to become a full-fledged Ubuntu translator, join a translation team!

Documentation resources

Find out more about translating Ubuntu:

The best place to find help for translating Ubuntu is the translation team for your language. You’ll find it on the list of Ubuntu Translations teams. For real-time communication, come over to the #ubuntu-translators IRC channel on the Freenode network. You can also use the global Ubuntu Translators mailing list. That is the place where all global discussion and announcements take place. You can read the online archive of the list, or you can subscribe to it and get involved in the development of Ubuntu localization or internationalization.

Also check out the list of all Ubuntu Translators communication channels.

  • If there isn’t a translation team for your language, you can create a new Ubuntu Translations team
  • If you translate a message in Launchpad for a given Ubuntu release, it will automatically be translated to all other releases
  • Language packs are Ubuntu packages that are released regularly and contain the latest translations done in Launchpad
  • Your name will be automatically added to the “About” dialogs of the programs you translate in appreciation for your contributions

Image: Ubuntu Global Jam AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by Alex Muntada