Documentation for Extension:Translate
Translators (main help page)
Sysadmins and developers
High quality can only be reached when everyone does their part: we have summarized some translation best practices that should be followed. Whether you are a translator or a translation administrator, the Translate extension provides you the tools to produce higher quality translations. In statistics and reporting we have described the many tools which allow translators to find where their effort is needed and translation administrators to monitor the progress. In this page we explain the quality assurance technical tools that encourage translators to work together to improve their translations. Translation reviewing is a very important task and the provided tools make it possible to increase and assess the quality of translations.
Translation review features
The access to the review tools is controlled by user right. The Translate extension by default adds an user group called translation reviewers. In review view the reviewers can indicate that they think the translation is correct and good by clicking a button. The software keeps track of reviewed translations so that reviewers don't need to review same translations again. Users can only review translations they haven't made themselves. Multiple people can review any translation.
Message documentation plays an important role here as well. The reviewer needs to be sure not only that the translation has the correct spelling and terminology, but also that it is suitable for the context.
The number of people who have reviewed a translation is shown near the review action for each message.
Of more interest, translators see in their watchlist when any of their translation has been reviewed. This is useful because they can see that someone is looking at their work and appreciating it, and that they're not left alone or ignored, so they can be more confident about translating.
It's (currently) not possible to exclude translation review log entries from the watchlist, watchlist email notifications or recent changes.
Translation review is performed on Special:Translate: the "mark as reviewed" check-mark is shown in the review view. Reviewers can review translations for any message group or choose the Recent translations message group to review latest translations.
Translations made by yourself can be hidden by clicking the hide button in the action bar at the bottom of the view. If not hidden, they have a small person icon. Filled (black) check-mark means that you have already marked the translation as reviewed. Empty check-mark (white on gray background) means that you will be the first reviewer of the translation. Gray check-mark means that the translation has been already reviewed by others, but not by you.
For other reviewers
Other reviewers benefit from knowing that some messages have already been reviewed, and by how many users. In fact, they can choose to focus review efforts on unreviewed translations in the group, using the relevant selector. Such translations might also have been left unreviewed by an unsure reviewer and require more attention because there is no way for the translator to report an uncertain translation.
Reviewing recent translations
In this page you can immediately see all translations you can review (and only them, if you use the filter for own translations). Most of the needed information is there and more is shown when you open the translation editor.
The initial review of message groups is better done one group at a time rather than in chronological order. The next section provides you a divide and conquer solution to decrease the review backlog.
Translation review makes into a real joy the hard job of proofreading a whole message group to keep it at an high level of quality and consistency.
If you know a message group well, you can open it for review and choose all translated messages and go through it all at once. Now you can check that messages have been correctly interpreted and improve their documentation; and ensure that source terms have been translated in the same way everywhere, with the help of the translation memory and the searchbar keyword-filter.
The next time, you'll only have to open the group again and skim it for the icons indicating new translations which need review; you won't need to closely follow recent changes nor to watchlist all messages, which are respectively too crowded and not practical.
Translation memory can help a little to keep the wording of similar messages consistent. It cannot enforce consistent use of terms in different kinds of messages. There is no technical solution for this problem yet, but you now have a handy tool to impose consistency piece by piece. It's a good achievement to have consistent translations at least across a whole message group, especially if it uses special terms which are hard to understand. In such cases more than usual, different translators might translate the messages, using different terms and resulting in a confusing overall translation. Moreover, if consistency is improved, the suggestions given by translation memory are more consistent and this should improve consistency among all message groups.
The Translate extension is designed for publishing translations as soon as possible to show translators the impact of their work. If you want to be sure that translations are of good quality before using them, you can use a more formal process. You can implement a workflow through message group states.
Reviewing of translation does not have any effect on the appearance or usage of translations, so it's a quite different tool than the Flagged revisions extension: the scope of translation reviewing is not to find and provide to its readers the best translation among those available, but to encourage quality work on translations.
Reviewing of translation can be combined with message group workflow states by having a proofreading state to be used by proofreaders to coordinate. As explained in more detail in the relevant page, the two features do not interact with each other: they are controlled separately by the users.