How to Translate Ancestral Quest
We Don’t All Speak English!
One of the things that impressed me about Ancestral Quest was that users who know another language can translate the screens and reports into that language and then make that translation available to other users. When I saw that feature, I had to try it out. I started slowly, with just a few screens, and before long I was hooked on the idea. My other language was Norwegian, and there aren’t many Norwegians, relatively speaking, who could benefit from it, but still it was fun, challenging, and rewarding. In the process, I recruited a friend, Marylyn Easter, to translate AQ into Spanish. There are many people who can benefit from her efforts.
Here is how you can try this out.
First note that the current language on the screen is the Default language, English. This means that the words on the screen which identify the fields where you can enter data, are written in English. It is these words, among others, which you will change as you translate Ancestral Quest into the language of your choice. Notice that the second option, Edit (Translate) Language File, is grayed out, and not available. This is because no language file is yet selected, and the current language file, English [Default], cannot be changed.
It is possible for you to use the translation facility to make changes to an existing language file, if permission is given by the author. To do that, you would click on Select Language File at this point, and the following screen would appear.
From this point you would select an existing file, and begin making your changes. The process you would follow would then be the same as the process you would use to create a new language, except that some or all of that translation would already be completed. However, the purpose of this lesson is to show how you would do a new translation, so we will not follow that path.
To begin a new translation, you will first want to create a New Language File. This file will contain all of the words and phrases used to present the screens and reports produced by Ancestral Quest. To start with, the words and phrases in this file will be the same as the ones in the English file. It will be your job to replace them with their equivalent in the new language. Click on New Language File.
This screen shows that the current file is the Ancestral Quest Native Translation, which cannot be changed. Highlight these words and replace them with the name of your new language, as you want it to appear in the list of available languages.
The button at the top of the screen above will take you to a webpage where Incline Software explains more about translation. I recommend it.
With the name of the new language entered, click on Create.
At this point, you need to do some serious thinking about why you are doing this translation. Do you want to leave the translation file Not Protected and open to the public? Do you want to allow others to “edit” your translation, but still retain your ownership? If so, select Partially Protected. Do you want to release the file with read only access? If you plan to sell your translation, Protected would be your best choice. This is the choice I made, even though I have asked Incline Software to distribute my Norwegian translation freely. I retain control. Had I chosen the Partially Protected option, this next screen would have been presented.
To establish my control of the file, I would first have to create an Owner ID and Password. Next, to claim ownership of the file, I would click the Set ID/Password button.
Now the file could be updated by others, but it would remain mine. That, however, isn’t what I wanted to teach, so I will go back and do it the way I intended.
With Protected selected, and my information entered, I press the Save button.
This is the screen which controls the translation process. With no other options selected, the translatable items are divided into four categories, Main Screens, Other Screens, Menus and Text. Lets start by looking at the Translation Options Screen. Click Options….
There are four boxes of radio buttons on the Translation Screen Options screen. The top box is for selecting how items will be sorted within the categories. The next box down is used to select which items will be listed within the categories. The third box deals with how screen items are organized. the last deals with how text strings are organized. The default is a good place to start, then experiment with other options. The purpose of the options is to make it easier for you to find what you are looking for. This is not a project to be tackled casually by the faint of heart. It will require some dedication. It will take some time.
That’s all for this posting. The next issue will get into the actual process. If this looks interesting to you, try creating a New Language File. We’ll start on the actual translation with the next posting.
If you are interested in seeing Ancestral Quest in another language, you will need to download that language module. Follow this LINK to find the available language modules. Look at the translations for languages you understand. If you can translate it better, or if you can make suggestions to the translator, check to see of they have placed contact information on the Language File Information screen.
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