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Localization Properties

From: Lieske, Christian <christian.lieske@sap.com>
Date: Wed, 14 Dec 2005 15:53:20 +0100
Message-ID: <0F568FE519230641B5F84502E0979DD1043B1210@dewdfe12.wdf.sap.corp>
To: <public-i18n-its@w3.org>

Dear all,

During the F2F in Abingdon, I took away the action item to come up with
some text about "localization properties". Since we at least
brainstormed the idea of possibly contributing the text as a GEO FAQ, I
divided my proposal for this text (see below) into question and answer.
As you can see, I decided to tackle "localization directives" as well.
The reason for this is of course the intimate relationship that's
usually assumed for these two concepts/terms.

Unfortunately, the plain text format in this mail did not allow me use
italics for some key terms such as 'in-situ'. Thus, I marked them with
double quotes.

Looking forward to your feedback.

Best regards,
Christian
---

Question
========
========

What do the terms 'localization directive' and 'localization property'
mean, and how are they related?

Answer
======
======

Everyone has their own preferred definitions for these terms. We provide
some general, high-level descriptions here of how we tend to use these
terms on the W3C Internationalization site. Both, localization
directives as well as localization properties are related to
standardized support for the internationalization (i18n) and
localization (l10n) of content. Although the examples in this document
are related to XML, the terms may be used in a non-XML setting as well.

Localization Directive
======================

Any "in-situ" construct whose main purpose is "specific" support for the
internationalization (i18n) and localization (l10n) for a given,
specific "part of content". An example of a localization directive is
'its:translate="yes"' in the following Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG)
instance:

<?xml version="1.0" standalone="no"?>
<!DOCTYPE svg PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD SVG 1.1//EN" 
  "http://www.w3.org/Graphics/SVG/1.1/DTD/svg11.dtd">
<svg width="10cm" height="3cm" viewBox="0 0 1000 300"
     xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" version="1.1"
	xmlns:its="http://www.w3.org/2005/11/its" >
    <text x="250" y="150" its:translate="yes">
    Hello, out there
  </text>
  <rect x="1" y="1" width="998" height="298"
        fill="none" stroke="blue" stroke-width="2" />
</svg>

'its:translate="yes"' expresses that the content of the 'text' element
(textual content of element, including child elements, but excluding
attributes) should be translated. Since 'its:translate="yes"' appears in
the 'text' element, it is an "in-situ" construct. Since
'its:translate="yes"' only pertains to a specific 'text' element, it
only provides "specific" localization support for a given, specific
"part of content". 'xml:lang' can be considered as a localization
directive.

Localization Property
=====================

Any "dislocated" construct whose main purpose is "general" support for
the internationalization (i18n) and localization (l10n) of a given,
specific "content type". An example of a localization property is
'its:translate="yes"' in the following XML snippet:

<its:documentRule translate="yes" translateSelect="//text"/>

This snippet expresses that the content of all 'text' elements (textual
content of element, including child elements, but excluding attributes)
of a certain content type should be translated. Since the snippet does
not appear in a specific 'text' element, it is a "dislocated" construct.
Since it pertains to all 'text' elements, it provides "general"
localization support for a given, specific "content type".

Localization properties can be realized in a number of ways and in a
number of places:

1. in a kind of header section in a certain content
2. in a separate file associcated with a certain content or content type
3. in a schema

In a sense, localization properties provide high-level general meta data
which can provide valuable information for i18n or l10n processes(e.g.
configure localization tools automatically similar to a setting or
initialization file). Localization directives, on the other hand,
provide lower-level meta data (and for example override meta data
provided by means of localization properties).

Further Reading
===============
===============

Internationalization Tag Set (ITS) http://www.w3.org/TR/its/
Received on Wednesday, 14 December 2005 19:33:17 UTC

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