The Content Translation Tool makes it easier to create
new new Wikipedia articles from other languages. It is now
available as a beta-feature in 148 Wikipedias. The tool now
features an updated selector with image thumbnails for search
results. Screenshot by
Runa Bhattacharjee, freely
licensed under CC0
last blog post, much has happened in the world of Content
Translation — a tool that makes it easier to translate
Wikipedia articles into different languages. The Wikimedia Language
Engineering team deployed as
a beta-feature in January 2015 in the Catalan, Spanish and
Portuguese Wikipedias; today, nearly 150 Wikipedias have access to
the tool, and more than 5,000 articles have been created by more
than 1,500 editors.
While on the one hand there are large Wikipedias, like English or German,
where thousands of volunteers have written articles about millions
of topics, there are over 100 smaller Wikipedias where a handful
of volunteers are struggling to add more content. Translating from
an existing article in another language is a common method adopted
in such Wikipedias to create more content. Content Translation
attempts to solve this rather daunting problem by simplifying the
process, allowing editors to quickly create the first draft of the
article and focus on improving the content. It includes an editing
interface and translation tools that make it easy to adapt
wiki-specific syntax, links, references, and categories. Machine
translation support via Apertium is also available for a
limited set of languages, which can considerably speed up the
process; if it is currently missing for yours, we invite you to
ongoing survey to test and provide feedback.
Even without machine translation, the tool has been used to
translate from any of the available languages (i.e. from all
Wikipedias) with features that allow automatic adaptation of links,
images, references and categories. For instance, nearly 500 new
articles have been created in the French Wikipedia using Content
Translation and without machine translation.
New languages and feature improvements
At present, Content Translation is available on
148 Wikipedias as a beta-feature for logged-in users, including
several large Wikipedias like French, Dutch and Polish. Being a
beta-feature, only logged-in users can use it at present by
enabling it from their preferences.
The tool presents a simple workflow—select the source language
and article to translate, select the target language, translate the
contents of the article, and publish it as a new page in the
corresponding Wikipedia. For category adaptation, the corresponding
category needs to exist in the target Wikipedia. Translators can
also save the translations and work on it later.
New translators who published articles using Content
Translation in April and May 2015. Image by
Pau Giner, freely licensed under CC BY-SA
In the months of April and May, we focused on improving features
that made it easy for users to start translating with Content
Translation by quickly gaining access to it. We introduced a
campaign that prompted users to try Content Translation instead,
when they were creating a new article. Users could enable the
feature directly from the campaign message screen and begin
translating the page from another language. A call-out message was
also added to the Contributions menu providing quick access to
different kinds of contributions (including translations). As an
outcome of these measures, we now see a sharp increase in the
number of new articles being created every week by increasing
number of new users (see images). We expect to get better insight
into the usage numbers in the coming month.
Feature improvement highlights:
- To prepare for deployment on wikis with Right-to-Left content,
several bugs have been fixed.
- Users will also see an improvement in the selector dialog,
where results from articles searched are now displayed with a
thumbnail and small description (see image).
- The ULS
input method has been integrated in the Content Translation
- New articles created using Content Translation are now
automatically linked through Wikidata
Deployment update and what’s coming next
In the coming month, we aim to continue adding Content
Translation as a beta-feature to more Wikipedias so that more users
can test the tool. This not only exposes special cases that we need
to be aware of (like local gadgets or Wikipedia specific scripts)
but also provides us with feature suggestions.
- Improved link handling with provision for complex
- Redesigned statistics page with additional data.
- Preliminary features for an integrated notification system
using Echo, to better connect with our users
The Language team will be hosting two Content Translation
workshops at Wikimania this year. You can sign up on the Wikimania
here); it is open for all participants. You can read more about
Content Translation on the project
page and also in the new
User Guide (translations are very welcome!).
Read more about Content Translation developments and other
updates from the Language Engineering team in our
monthly report. We would also like to invite everyone for our
office hour session on June 10 at 14:30 UTC.
Runa BhattacharjeeLanguage Engineering,