Is there a good way to publish documentation in different languages?

Hi,

we are considering Confluence as a tool for managing our end-user documentation. Today we use Word and that tends to get a bit inefficient. We want to devide the document into smaller subsections and our thought was that we would like to keep track if anything major was changed in the master documentation that should also be translated into the localized versions of the documnet.

Best Regards

Daniel

5 answers

1 accepted

Accepted Answer
2 votes

Confluence would be the right tool then.
Few pointers:

  • create separate spaces per language
  • translators "watch" default langiage space for updates and when notified - update their language
  • have a separate space for inclusion library / images, etc - and source images from there, so changes are automatically replicated for all langiages

Daniel:

I'm struggeling with the same question. Even though I like the thoughts behind webwesens answer, I'm not sure if this will fly with my users...

Furthermore, I could not find any mechanisms to synchronize pages and structures in multiple spaces...

So, here are a few thoughts on using multiple languages on a single wiki page:

  • horizontal split: use headers, sections and/or horizontal rules
  • vertical split: use sections/columns
  • vertical split: use tables
  • overlay: use decks and cards (a.k.a. tabs)
  • quick and dirty fix: let google do the work for you

Google translate button:

{html}
<div id="google_translate_element"></div><script>
function googleTranslateElementInit() {
  new google.translate.TranslateElement({
    pageLanguage: 'en'
  }, 'google_translate_element');
}
</script><script src="//translate.google.com/translate_a/element.js?cb=googleTranslateElementInit"></script>
{html}

regards,

bronoman

Hi bronoman,
1) synchronizing structures would mean
a) to use a "copy" plugin to copy subtrees, if that does not happen so often. You could use the "recent changes" function to follow up on that.
b) use a word file for the filestructures and import the wordfile into the various spaces.


2) You might want to rethink the "all languages in one page" thought. Imagine you hav 3 languages in a page and have noone who can do all of them. That will break usual editing-workflows in three ways :
a) Now, if you have people working on the article, they might work on the same page at the same time. They would have to "merge" changes all the time.
b) "watch notifications" wont work because all the time different people do different stuff in there.

c) reviewing, reediting, rereviewing, signing off ... for each language, will create extra traffic, versions and change-logs.

Now imagine you have more than three ....

  • overlay: use decks and cards (a.k.a. tabs)

Hi bronoman,

How do you create tabs in Confluence?

Hallo Daniel and all

There's a plugin called the "Language plugin" by BitVoodoo that will do what you want:

http://www.bitvoodoo.ch/plugins/confluence-language-plugin.html

https://plugins.atlassian.com/plugins/ch.bitvoodoo.confluence.plugins.language

I haven't used it, but I've heard good things about it. I hope this is helpful.

Cheers, Sarah

Hi again, some "own" answers :)

for one approach for few languages - check out Jodie Miners blog about using builder-show functions to manage multiple contents. This way, you can keep multiple languages on one page and extract the correct language for each "output channel". (http://jodiem.com.au/2011/10/20/creating-word-documents-from-confluence/)

for another, how about the following structure

mainarticle (tag=lang_en)

+ childarticle "mainarticle_translations (tag=workpage)

+ translation1 (tag=lang_fr)

+ translation2 (tag=lang_fr)

+ translation3 (tag=lang_fr)

+ other children pages as sub-mainarticles (tag=lang_en)

This way, you have separate pages, but one hierarchy. Using the tag-filter, e.g. for scroll-office, you can still say "Give me the doc for "lang_de" - You will get the hierarchy of pages identical to all the rest, but only the german pages.

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