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A Method to Insert Translation Context for Strings Containing Variables Disclosure Number: IPCOM000224503D
Publication Date: 2012-Dec-31
Document File: 5 page(s) / 126K

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


Strings containing variables to be translated in software translation process usually increase the total translation cost because it leads to extra communication and re-translation/re-confirmation. The disclosed method is intended to help reduce the total cost of translation by providing translation context for strings containing variables to translators and integrating the method with general testing process with no extra effort.

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A Method to Insert Translation Context for Strings Containing Variables

Background and problems

Translation plays an important role in helping software get adopted in worldwide markets. However, the translation is expensive. The general translation process includes

Developer team sending English resource files to translators


Translators translating the English resource files and return translated ones to developer team


Developer team checking the translated resource files into the software


This process usually includes some additional tasks such as communication about questions during translation period, re-translation and re-confirmation after inaccurate translation shown in context of software UI (User Interface), which would increase the total cost. One of the main reasons for additional communication and re-translation is that, translators don't know the context that what would be the replacement of variables in translation files, thus they could not guarantee the accurate translation appear in software UI context.

Taking an example as below, the keys and values are in English properties files. And they would be combined to show string "For troubleshooting information, see the ProductABC Administration" in Software UI as a whole.

Key1=For troubleshooting information, see the {@}

Key2=ProductABC Administration

However, in Polish, the stand-alone term "ProductABC Administration" would be translated into"Administrowanieprogramem ProductABC", while it would be

translated to "administrowaniaprogramem ProductABC" when combined in sentence above. If Polish translator doesn't confirm the replacement of variable

with developer team, they would have to retranslate and reconfirm this inaccurate translation during translation verification phase.

Core ideas

This method would tag the strings containing variables in resource files with special marks, and after checking the tagged resource files into software, general testing like functional testing could be performed before the English resource files are translated. During general testing phase, a tool would be used to read the strings that shown in software UI, and it would collect and insert the strings which have special marks into a comments file for ideally every string that has variables. When translation phase starts, the comments files could be provided along with English resource files for translators to refer to during translation phase.


The benefits of this solution include

From develope...