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Proposed FAQ/Techniques on linking to translationed pages

From: Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 2004 14:47:36 +0100
To: "GEO" <public-i18n-geo@w3.org>
Message-Id: <20040621134736.24B904EECC@homer.w3.org>


I've been asked again recently how to deal with pages where there are parallel translations, and thought it might help to write an FAQ (which will be quite close to a techniques section in approach).

Here is what I'm thinking of saying for people who only have a small number of translated linguistic alternatives (if you have country-based alternatives or too many alternatives to fit on the current page, there are some differences):

-	Use content negotiation based on HTTP headers where possible to take users to the most likely localized page
-	Use the example.en.html order of extensions
-	Always include a default mechanism - don't leave it unspecified what happens if the user's preferred language is not available

-	Even if you use content negotiation, always display links to the alternative pages in a prominent position on all your pages (so that people needing to go there don't have to search for it)
-	Use the name of the language in the language and script of the destination page as the link (and don't use flags)
-	The link can be text in graphics (since it doesn't need translation)
-	Include title attribute text in the a element that explains what the link is for the user of the current page (in the language and script of the current page)
-	Mark up the link as per the following example to get the language tagging correct (English page linking to Swedish):
<a title="Swedish version" href="Overview.sv"><span lang="sv" xml:lang="sv">svenska</lang></a>

-	Include a link element too marked up like this example going from English to Swedish:
<link title="svenska version" type="text/html" rel="alternate" hreflang="sv" href="Overview.sv" lang="sv" xml:lang="sv" />

See the example at http://www.w3.org/International/articles/serving-xhtml/

Comments, please,


Richard Ishida

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Received on Monday, 21 June 2004 09:47:36 UTC

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