Top Ten Tasks/Progress/Support for multiple languages on

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1 - UI translation is based on the OSQA software. To some degree OSQA already supports translating the user interface. It uses the i18n features of Django and can be set to chose the language of the UI based on the users' browser preference. However, this feature is not yet activated on and only a limited number of language translations currently exist. This part of the task would therefore involve working with the operations team to enable OSQA's i18n features, as well as create more translations in different languages.

  • Update: OSQA should now obey a browser's language setting, however that does not mean all languages are translated (well). In particular German seems to have to no translation at all. Consider contributing a translation to OSQA if this is not good enough for you. robert 23:29, 28 November 2011 (UTC)
    • Really? I tried with Opera and de, es, it, fr - no translations on the starting page. changes the language correctly. --Aseerel4c26 (talk) 01:31, 13 June 2013 (UTC)

Getting OSQA to be localized is interesting, I'm guessing it's about asking question in Spanish and not seeing it in the main view

I checked how translated it is and it's pretty bad:

Translation status OSQA 2011-11-22
language Total strings Translated strings
bg 1643 784
cn 1704 1643
de 1642 0
en 1643 216
es 1643 1242
fr 1643 0
ja 1643 1306
l 1643 0
pt 1643 0
ru 938 293
zh_CN 1643 737

-- User:Emj 21:30, 23 November 2011

2 - languages of questions

To be able to easily support multiple languages of questions in the same instance of, a good filtering system is needed to restrict questions and answers to the language a given user can understand. Unlike e.g. Shapado, OSQA currently does not support this feature. Therefore this part of the task would require extending the OSQA software accordingly.

  • Update: We're trialling the idea of using the tagging system as an intermediate solution to proper multi-language support. The idea is to use a tag in the form lang-(ISO 639‑1 code) e.g. lang-de for questions in languages other than english. There are a few things that aren't ideal about this, but if necessary there are a few things that I can probably do to make things a bit better:
    • Add a tag whitelisting feature (to go along with the tag blacklisting feature) for users
    • Possibly try to auto-suggest language tags when authoring questions? robert 23:29, 28 November 2011 (UTC)
Progress? That is have you doen anything about this? Erik Johansson 11:15, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, currently the blacklisting works, but the whitelisting (I suspect that is "interesting tags") seems not to work (show only lang-de?!). I have tagged many pages with lang-de (and other languages - lang codes like in the osm wiki) in the meantime. What is missing is tag1 AND tag2 AND tagx searches (that would also useful for non lang-xx tags). And it is not possible for someone who only wants to only see English questions (would need blacklisting lang-*). And it would be good to have the UI suggest a tag based on the UI language. --Aseerel4c26 (talk) 01:40, 13 June 2013 (UTC)

Update 2012-03-05

I'm not too sure about this, but it seems that it isn't 100% working - apparently the standard Django i18n stuff doesn't necessarily choose the right language or something like that. --Matt 18:33, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

Update (October 2012) - migration research

Idea of migrating away from OSQA has been considered on the EWG meeting in early October 2012.



  • Ruby on Rails
  • MongoDB


  • Allows selection of languages for questions and a language for the interface:

Shapado i18n.png

  • Supports OpenID
  • "Answer by e-mail" option - could be useful for integrating this channel with the others
  • Social features - groups, badges, upvote/downvote, reputation


  • It must be possible to log into using credentials
  • Currently it's a piece of Python code that uses simple HTTP basic auth:
  • Shapado supports OAuth client


Database level

  • Probably the biggest challenge is different database paradigms: OSQA uses a relational database, Shapado uses MongoDB (a NoSQL database)
  • OSQA database schema
  • Shapado data model
  • Django (OSQA) and Rails (Shapado) (likely - to be verified!) use different password salting/hashing algorithms; it means that we would probably need to reset all stored user passwords
  • Overall - migration looks like a major effort: translating database schema from OSQA to Shapado is a very large task considering the number of tables / size of the data model; it would also need very in-depth examination feature by feature, e.g. if all OSQA badges are supported by Shapado, how to migrate it etc. Paweł Paprota 09:38, 15 October 2012 (BST)
  • On the other hand, i18n support in Shapado looks great - both the UI and content (questions/answers) can be localized, users can select multiple content languages that interest them - such model fits OSM perfectly. Paweł Paprota 09:38, 15 October 2012 (BST)

Data export/import level