As I mentioned at http://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=68330, I am working for E-Learning Program of Open Institute (http://open.org.kh/?q=en/programs); a program aims to provide the necessary e-learning know-how and free local language tool for Cambodian training institutions to be able to produce and manage their own e-learning courses. This program is one of the Khmer Software Initiative (well-known as KhmerOS) programs that bring Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) into the localized version for Cambodian. We are not only doing the translation but also developing the necessary training material for the localized software. Until now, the following software have been translated:
- Mekhala: The localized version of Firefox,
- Moyura: The localized version of Thunderbird,
Drupal, the powerful Content Management System. More and more software are being translated by the Localization team of the KhmerOS project.
For our E-Learning program, we will need to translate a Learning Management System. Because of its powerful features and its collaborative community, we decided to choose Moodle.
Maybe I am wrong but I understand that, unlike most of other FOSS, to translate Moodle we need to translate each strings directly in the PHP source files. Of cause, we can do that but is it what is called the optimum process (in term of translating, reviewing, etc.)? Our experience was that, there is the translation template file out there (usually PO or POT file format). The translator need to grab that file somewhere from the project Website, translate it using some translation editor (poEdit in Windows or KBabel in KDE, AFAIK) and finally send the translated file back to its project. We are not sure how will Moodle think about this procedure but we also think about what might be helpful. Maybe it will be good to have a tool that can convert string in PHP source file to the translatable format and vice-versa.
Translating is also another challenge. PO file format seems to be most widely used but it doesn't be there alone. Many other formats are being introduced everyday and the outstanding one is XLIFF; the XML Localization Interchange File Format. It is an XML-based format that enables translators to concentrate on the text to be translated (http://developers.sun.com/dev/gadc/technicalpublications/articles/xliff.html). KhmerOS project is also developing a new translation editor called Pootling which supports both PO and XLIFF file format.
What's a long story! Well, to be short we want to develop a tool to convert Moodle PHP source file to XLIFF and then we can use Pootling to translate it and convert it back to PHP source file. Our developers, who are developing Pootling, can do that tool.
So what we need to know was your opinion about our suggested converting tool and translation procedure.
P.S. We also realized that someone already translated some Moodle strings into Khmer, so we may want to improve those translation and do the rest translation.
This seems to be very long but it is just the beginning.