Adding context to particular strings

Hi everyone!

It would be great to have context for the to-be-translated strings, and Transifex actually makes that possible ("Context" under "More info").

For example, the last string was "Seconds", and without any context a single word is especially hard to translate, at least into Finnish. Since there's no enumerator placeholder (e.g. "1%1$d"), I have to guess that this refers to the unit (e.g. "this is a selectable unit to display data in").

Even knowing the menu heading would help a lot; usage examples would be even better.



P.S. This thread because it seemed the most appropriate.

Thanks for bringing this up! This is definitely not hard to do -- I think the challenging part is knowing when it's useful.

In this case, would "time unit" be enough? Is the ambiguity with the English meaning of "Seconds" since it could mean "a second helping", "a time unit", "a conjugated verb that compares two sequential things" and probably more? Or that the time unit has different words in Finnish depending on usage?

I've separated this into a new topic so others can suggest strings that could benefit from more context. I do suspect we have mistakes in translations due to lack of context.

Hi Hélene,

And thanks for getting back to me.

In the particular "Seconds" example, the "time unit" aspect of "seconds" is translated differently depending on whether it's naming the time unit (e.g. "measure in seconds") or whether it's for enumerating (e.g. "15 seconds").

Actually the most important context would probably be where the text is used, as in "Collect / Admin Settings / General Settings menu item".

Hi again,
Just wanted to ask if there's continuing interest in making translations easier.
One recent string was simply "Manual", and without context it was unclear whether this meant "handbook" (noun) or "non-automated" (adjective).
A single sentence of context would already be a great help.

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I've filed an issue to actually address this on an ongoing basis at The strings for ODK Central all provide context so we now have more experience with what is useful and how to include it. Thanks for bringing this back up.

Thanks again for pushing on this, @Sebastian_Therman. We have added the context you suggested and more. We've also reorganized the strings to group them by general theme. We hope that having related strings near each other will also help with translation.

The context hints appear in Transifex in the "developer notes" section below the translation section:

Developers write these hints thinking about the languages that we know so don't hesitate to write here if the context provided isn't sufficient or doesn't cover an important piece of information for your language.