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Translation UX

From mediawiki.org

This is a design documentation page of an ongoing project. Please leave your feedback on design proposals in their respective talk pages. You can participate by signing up at the bottom of the page

The Extension:Translate can make mediawiki a powerful collaborative translation platform. It is currently deployed on translatewiki.net and is the central tool used to localize all wikimedia projects. Translatewiki.net currently maintains an active community of community translators making an extensive number of translations every day [1].

The UI for the extension has seen the addition of several features over the years but in an ad-hoc manner. The Translation UX improvement project will consist of evaluating the usability of the current extension and proposing a series of design improvements to enhance the experience of translating messages. Increasing the number of message translations has a direct bearing on making free knowledge more accessible to every human being on earth.

UX Deliverables


Design documentation




Technical documentation


Project Timeline & Status






Existing UX Issues

  • Many new users do not complete the user registration and rights requisition process, leading to lost translators
  • Searching translations is cumbersome and does not have sufficient filtering options
  • Hidden features and interactions in the translation editor interface (eg. keyboard shortcuts, inline editor)
  • Proofreading of translations is not seen as an important activity by translators
  • Confusing information architecture (Translate | Proofread | Message group statistics | Language statistics) are all on the same level of hierarchy
  • TWN Support page for translators [2]
  • On LanguageStats: «I didn't realise the collapses could have several levels, nor that there was a button called "expand all"»
  • Pop-up vs. inline: one, two.

Design Considerations

  • Optimize translation process for keyboard-only operation and touch based interaction
  • Grandma friendly interface and workflow
  • Eliminate redundant interactions

Future Ideas

  • Design a chrome interface for translatewiki.net as a dedicated translation platform

Be a part of the design team!


Your participation and feedback helps to improve the proposed designs that would eventually go live. You can contribute by building a feature wishlist (on the talk page), reviewing the proposed designs and documents (talk page of respective subpage), participating in user tests and even proposing your own designs here for peer review.

See Translation UX/Participate for more information

Project Coordinators