How to Translate Using PO Files
This is a very simple guide to help translators with little computer
knowledge do their work using the Gettext PO file format. It assumes
that the coordinator will complete strings such as the footnotes.
Guide to Translating Using PO Files
1. The first step is to install a specific program to edit .po
files; for example gTranslator, Kbabel, Poedit, among others. All
these programs work more or less in the same way. In this guide we
will use Poedit as an example.
2. Download the template that contains the last version of the
original page in English. This file is called POT (PO Template). You
will find it in the
/po/ subdirectory, which is located
immediately after the directory that contains the page you want to
translate. For example, if the page is in
/gnu/, like this:
And there you will find:
3. Rename about-gnu.pot to about-gnu.es.po.
4. Open about-gnu.es.po with Poedit. Then go to
Catalog > Settings and fill in the fields as follows:
Project name and version: about-gnu.html
Team's email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Country: You can leave this field blank
Source code charset: You can leave this field blank
Plural forms: nplurals=2; plural=(n!=1);
Save by clicking OK.
5. Select View > Comments and View > Automatic
Comments. That way, in the lower right corner of the window you
will see any instructions present in the English HTML page that are
useful for translators.
6. In the main window of Poedit, you will see that all strings
are in English (“strings” are lines of text, such as
titles and paragraphs). One by one, you start translating those
Links. You will see that all links are in HTML format, like
<a href="/gnu/gnu.html">Other historical and general articles about GNU</a>.
In all links, what you need to translate is only the text that
appears between “>” and “</a>”.
Thus, in the example above, you only need to translate the sentence
“Other historical and general articles about GNU” and
leave the rest untouched. The best way to do this is to copy the
complete original link, paste it in your translation, and then
replace “Other historical and general articles about GNU”
with its translation in Spanish.
Quotation marks. Quotation marks in English are: “ ”.
Replace them with the Spanish quotation marks: « ». In
the Spanish keyboard, you get them by doing AltGr+z and AltGr+x.
- Foreign and emphatic words. Foreign words in the Spanish text
are marked like this:
. For emphasis, use
7. The following strings are special:
- *GNUN-SLOT: TRANSLATOR'S NOTES*
Unless we have a translation note, this string is "translated"
with a blank space; that is, press the space bar once. (see XXX
for instructions on how to put translation notes).
- *GNUN-SLOT: TRANSLATOR'S CREDITS*
Do not translate.
- Copyright © 2012 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
Copy and paste verbatim.
8. Do not translate the following strings:
Please send general FSF & GNU inquiries to <a
are also <a href=\"/contact/\">other ways to
contact</a> the FSF.
Please send broken links and other corrections or
suggestions to <a
Please see the <a
README</a> for information on coordinating and submitting
translations of this article.
This page is licensed under a <a rel=\"license\"
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
9. When you are finished, close Poedit and open about-gnu.es.po
with a normal text editor, for example Gedit. Then edit the
header as follows:
# LANGUAGE translation of http://www.gnu.org/gnu/about-gnu.html
# Spanish translation of http://www.gnu.org/gnu/about-gnu.html
Replace the YEAR in:
# Copyright (C) YEAR Free Software Foundation, Inc.
with the year the translation was made (for example, 2012):
#Copyright (C) 2012 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
Leave the following comment as is:
# This file is distributed under the same license as the original article.
Replace the following comment:
# FIRST AUTHOR <EMAIL@ADDRESS>, YEAR.
with your own data and the year you made the translation:
# Your Name <email@example.com>, 2012.
10. Leave the following as is: