Write the Docs: Markus Zapke-Gründemann – Writing multi-language documentation using Sphinx

I’m at Write the Docs today in Budapest and will be post­ing notes from ses­sions through­out the day. These are all posted right after a talk fin­ishes so they’re rough around the edges.

Markus is an independent software developer and software trainer. Sphinx is a python-based tool for generating documentation. It will output in to a variety of formats including HTML, ePub, and plain text. His talk focused on the internationalization of text written in Sphinx.

Internationalization is the translation of text in to other languages without changing the underlying code. It leaves the markup and HTML structure of the text unchanged.

How internationalization works in Sphinx.
How internationalization works in Sphinx.

Sphinx has an introductory page about how internationalization works. It walks through examples of using gettext as well as the general process.

sphinx-intl is an extension that makes the translation process much easier. It lessens the command-line nature of the task and generates binary files for your translations.

Transifex is a commercial solution for speeding up your translation process. It’s a modern webapp that makes collaborating on translations easier. They also have a free option for open source projects.