[OSM-talk] Multilingual map
eda at waniasset.com
Mon Mar 9 17:32:25 GMT 2009
D Tucny <d <at> tucny.com> writes:
>Hi folks,I've been thinking about how it would be good to have the map available
>in multiple languages...
This is a great piece of work, and IMHO something needed on the main OSM site.
Might I make a few suggestions?
The default language could be chosen from the web browser's Accept-Language
header. So the map will be automatically localized into the user's language as
soon as they visit.
Rather than a tickbox list of layers to show, it would be better to have an
ordered list of preferences. An English speaker would probably use English
names, then local ones if English is unavailable. Someone who speaks Spanish
and a little English, but cannot read Chinese, might prefer names in Spanish,
then English, then the local names. The web browser's Accept-Language is also a
list of preferences (each language in the list has a score factor).
I understand that allowing all possible preferences would exponentially increase
the number of layers to generate, so perhaps you could just make tiles for the
one-language-then-local option, and keep logs of the Accept-Language headers you
receive from visitors to the site so you can see if there are other popular
language combinations that could be added to the list.
Perhaps an alternative to the above suggestion would be to recognize the
language of 'local names', so if a place is located in Australia and has just
'name', assume that the name is in English and render it as part of the English
A multi-language map will prompt a bit of data cleanup. For example I can see
'Donostia - San Sebastian' in the Basque country, when these are two names for
the same place. It should lessen the language wars we've seen in places like
Cyprus, since each community can tag the name in their own language. So I hope
this proof of concept can eventually be incorporated into the OSM front page!
Ed Avis <eda at waniasset.com>
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