NOTE: This documentation section is outdated and needs to be revised.
Free software is going international! The Translation Project is a way to get maintainers, translators and users all together, so free software will gradually become able to speak many native languages.
gettext tool set contains everything maintainers
need for internationalizing their packages for messages. It also
contains quite useful tools for helping translators at localizing
messages to their native language, once a package has already been
To achieve the Translation Project, we need many interested people who like their own language and write it well, and who are also able to synergize with other translators speaking the same language. If you'd like to volunteer to work at translating messages, please send mail to your translating team.
Each team has its own mailing list, courtesy of Linux International. You may reach your translating team at the address email@example.com, replacing ll by the two-letter ISO 639 code for your language. Language codes are not the same as country codes given in ISO 3166. The following translating teams exist:
For example, you may reach the Chinese translating team by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. When you become a member of the translating team for your own language, you may subscribe to its list. For example, Swedish people can send a message to email@example.com, having this message body:
Keep in mind that team members should be interested in working at translations, or at solving translational difficulties, rather than merely lurking around. If your team does not exist yet and you want to start one, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org; you will then reach the coordinator for all translator teams.
A handful of GNU packages have already been adapted and provided with message translations for several languages. Translation teams have begun to organize, using these packages as a starting point. But there are many more packages and many languages for which we have no volunteer translators. If you would like to volunteer to work at translating messages, please send mail to email@example.com indicating what language(s) you can work on.