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Subject: RE: [docbook-apps] Multilanguage DocBook documents - best practices needed

> > 1. Store your source language (usually English) as modular DocBook
> > documents.


All our stuff to be localized is stored this way (in SVN). Almost every chapter is a separate file xincluded into the main file.

> > 2. Prior sending document for translation assemble it into one
> > large file.

> As part of the preprocessing also:
> * Profile to remove any internal content, <remark>s, and comments that
> won't be in the output and might confuse the issue.
> * Normalize the line breaks so you have one line for each block
> element (e.g. para, title, etc). That way the translation memory tools
> won't be confused if the line wrapping changes between releases.
> * If processing it into a single file results in a very large file,
> consider chunking back into one file per chapter.


We do not pre-process our stuff in any way. We send the bunch of XML files together with the PDF output and get the same XML stuff in a different language. (The lang attribute is set only on the root element of the main file).

This localized content is stored in SVN. Any outputs are generated from this modular source.

> > 3. Use agency which has very good translation software with
> > translation memory
> Require that they provide the TM as a deliverable so that you can use
> it next time even if you select a different vendor.
> Get bids from more than one vendor and compare them carefully. There
> are many aspects which can affect the price.


An agency with the reliable CAT tool is a must. And as mentioned, an access to their TM is strongly recommended as it eases switching to the different vendor.

There is one related issue connected with translations: GUI images.
The size of elements in desktop or web apps intended for localization should depend on the text content. We try to avoid highlighting as it would have to be recreated in every particular language.


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