+1 for this proposal!!!
As a MOD translator (ea. Anti-SPAM ACP, Download MOD [from phpBB2.x onward from time to time]) I find that phpBB is a hard to translate, not because of language ofcourse. I have been working with phpBB for over 5 years now, and from time to time I have to upgrade. The reason why I fear upgrade with phpBB, they will always give me work. Work as a PHP hacker and work in my translations. MODs are even worse in that regard, since most MOD authors don't think about the translations at all.
I have been working with wordpress for over 2 years now, and I have to say it's a breeze maintaining both code and translations.
With Wordpress they use GNUtext, it seperates the "language" from the coding. No longer I work in "PHP code" files I have to hunt down in places in the code tree of the program. I just use POedit
, I scan the plugin directory (yes, more room for improvement for phpBB, all code of a plugin is located in a single directory!
This means that I can focus on a correct translation, but putting a translation file into the language directory the translation is done. Without touching php code, meaning I cannot break the plugin (mod) or software I work on.
So pro's for a translator:
1. Work on translating, instead of PHP code. Code and Text are seperates resources.
2. Do'nt worry about "coding" your translation into PHP correctly (if you do make mistakes now it breaks the code, and is hard to find).
3. No hunting for php files with "text" that need translation, POedit helps you there, it finds text.
One improvement for MODs would be that they stay in a single directory. Instead of having a single "language" directory, every MOD should have it's own language. Now I know this might give some performance issue, but I would improve on more then just translation. I mean having to hunt for phpBB code, to find the code that belongs, to "patch" instead of "plugin". I noticed that there is a lot of talk on moving toward a more plugable codebase. DO THAT!
I also coded on a plugin that connects phpBB3 and wordpress, in the form of a widget (recent_posts_phpBB3). From that I learned that its simple to implement for a developer, so simple its hard to agrue not using it
Pro's for developer:
1. Easy of implementation, it's adding some simple libs and statements to your code, but not intrusive. No lookup's in the code, you code like you normally do.
2. Seperate the code from the text, making it simple for the translators.
3. More translations can be added, simply by adding the translation files.
O, right, and all the talk on performance. I have seen wordpress on large sites, it works. It performs. Lets look at other projects, like wordpress how they use GNUtext...Please add GNUtext to a future release, its good for the phpBB ecosystem. Its good coding practice, and, it will give more people the possibility to giveback doing translations.