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PurposeGames META

The PurposeGames META initiative is about making PurposeGames available in every major language so that more people can enjoy the benefits of creating and playing games to learn.

Simply apply to become a META contributor and you can contribute by translating sentences needed by PurposeGames in a language in which you are proficient.

Current Status by Language

Don't see your language here? Just tell us about it, and we'll add it

Please note! German, Spanish, Danish, Dutch, and Norwegian currently contains auto-translations. Errors are sure to be there. Help needed.

How Does It Work?

If you're a member of PurposeGames, you can apply to become a translator. As such, you can click on any phrase in any language and add your contribution.

You can like or dislike translations by others which helps us pick the best contribution.

Just because someone may have translated a sentence doesn't mean there isn't room for one more.

What Does the Process Look Like?

When you become an approved translator, you can click on any of the languages in the list on the frontpage of this meta-site, and you will see a lot of phrases (see image below). The image below shows four phrases with five translations. They all have a translation in use, and the last one has a suggested translation added by another member. A phrase can have many translations and if you think you have a better suggestion, add one. Only one of the translations can be in use.

Looking at the interface, you have the phrase to be translated on your left (always in US English). If needed, you get a small explanation of it below it. You can see that the first phrase "Give a nod to the list creator" doesn't have an explanation. It really doesn't need it, whereas the one below it has an explanation since it has a variable in it (%1$s).

Each phrase belongs to a domain, which is really just a way to make it easier to find where it is typically used on the site

Most phrases also have an example link where it is being used.

Please Note! This is still being looked over, not all phrases that should have an explanation has one

The Translation Process

Worth noting here is that for the last two phrases in the image, "%1$s members" and "%1$s members have it", the variable represents the number of members that have earned a specific badge. Even if you do not know Swedish, you can see that the translation in use is the same for these two. This is quite typical for translations i.e. what makes sense in one language may or may not make sense in another language. Worth keeping in mind. What makes it quite challenging to come up with a good translation is that you need to be aware of the context in the site where the phrase is used. In this case, it made sense to use the same Swedish translation for the two different English phrases.

How To Deal With Variables

A variable is used on PurposeGames to represent a number or a name. It is denoted %1$s or %2$s (...) and so on, depending on how many variables there are in a particular phrase.

It is often straightforward i.e. "%1$s members online" simply means that %1$s represents the number of members currently online. When translating, you must always write the variable exactly as it looks. That said, you can place it where it fits in the sentence of the language being translated.

There are some advanced usage of variables together with HTML, like the phrase <span>%1$sp</span> to %2$s. In such cases you have help from the help text, which in this case is The number of points to reach next level. Note the "p" in the variable, it represents the word "points". In this case, we need to make sure to write the HTML and the %1$s and %2$s exactly as given, but can make it a completely different phrase with, if it fits our language, the %2$s comes first, and the "p" for points is a completely different letter, and maybe it makes sense to put a space between it and the varilable, in the language beinge translated into.

In conclusion, you may move around the variables in your sentence, you can change any letters directly attached to it. The variable is always four letters, any subsequent letters represents a word and should be changed to fit your language. Also, please try to not use more letters in your translation than the original has in it. It is usually space-constrained.

What's a Good Translation?

We're the first to admit it. Knowing a language really well doesn't necessarily mean you'll be great at translating.

Here are a couple of ideas to keep in mind when translating

  • Direct translation is rarely the best translation i.e. knowing what word or phrase you would use to describe the function in your language is a lot more important
  • Capital first letters for every word in headings may be good in one language but not in another
  • Is it short and sweet? Will it fit the space? Please adhere to the hints sometimes given underneath a sentence/phrase
  • If you come across variables (looks like so: %1$s, %2$s etc), understand what the variable represents and place it to fit correctly in your sentence. Always copy the variable exactly as stated, but change the placement in the sentence if need be.
  • Don't try and reinvent the wheel. If 9 of 10 websites call it "Add to favorites" in your language, go with that.
  • Be brief.