Multilingual WordPress and Very Important Message from WordCamp Kansai 2015

On July 25~26, 2015, I had an opportunity to speak at WordCamp Kansai 2015 to talk about the multilingualization of WordPress.

Every year, the team of WordPress Nagoya community members car-pool and attend WordCamp Kansai event. This is our 4th time to do so since 2011.

Osaka University Toyonaka Campus 学生会館
Osaka University Hall 大阪学生会館

WordCamp Kansai 2015 was taking place at Osaka University, suburb of Osaka, the 2nd biggest city of Japan. The over 100 year-old modern style building was registered as the important historic building of Japan.

The mixture of friendly WordCamp and history brought us somewhat strange feeling.

Osaka University Hall Main Hall

 

The Must-Know Best Practice of ‘Multilingualize’ Your WordPress Site Seminar

WordCamp Kansai 2015 - Katz

Photo by Hissy

In this time, I had an opportunity to speak in front of audience how to make the best multilingual WordPress.

I’ve worked with many Japanese company and government to make multilingual web site, including the part of English, Chinese and Korean website of Central Japan International Airport, and Japanese government tourism promotion.

Since I was involved with those projects, I’ve realized many Japanese people still misunderstand that making multilingual web site is as easy as translating original Japanese web site.

They mainly start thinking about which plug-ins to use. But it’s not that simple. You won’t sometime need to use plug-ins.

So I’ve talked about the importance of the targeting, and planning.

 

 

 

When I have a chance, I’ll translate into English.

But much appreciation to WordCamp Kansai Program Staff members who gave me the precious input including Miyauchi-san, Obara-san, Sumida-san and others.

 

Photo by Hoshino

They’ve shot the video of my presentation. So hopefully, you may be able to watch my Japanese presentation some day on WordCamp.tv.

Moreover, Naoko from Automattic added my slideshow as a reference to Multilingual  WordPress section WordPress Japanense Codex. Many thanks! But I’m afraid if I have any too old info or mistakes. So please let me know.

 

 

In addition, I’ve make the concrete5 version as well 🙂

 

 

Many Workshops & Finally Updated My Own Plugins

At this year’s WordCamp Kansai 2015, there are much fewer seminars, but workshops.

I eagerly attend the plug-in workshop. Although I knew how to make a WordPress plug-ins, I self-taught myself. At the session, many famous Japanese plug-in authors joined the workshop, including famous Contact Form 7 author Miyoshi-san, WP Total Hack‘s Miyauchi-san, Omagari-san from Prime Strategy, and Kuraishi (tenpura)-san of WP Multibyte Patch.

I have two tiny plugins called Ustream Status and Twitcasting Status.

But I was very lazy to update these two plug-ins for a several years.

But thanks to the seminar, I was able to update Ustream Status.

Now I need to find some time to update Twitcasting Status….

 

 

 

The Very Important Seminar about Multilingual Community of WordPress

Although there are many seminar that I would like to share, I would really like to emphasize Kuraishi (tenpura) san’s seminar.

WP Multibyte Patch の秘密

tenpura-san is the author of infamous WordPress plug-ins, WP Multibyte Patch. This plug-ins are used by almost all Japanese WordPress users.

It’s simply because WordPress don’t work without this plug-ins.

WordPress has a problem when dealing with Japanese language.

  • Japanese email must be encoded its own character encoding (UTF-8 started being accepted though)
  • Japanese has no space
    • Word-count method don’t exist
    • English “Excerpts” function don’t work

Without this plug-ins, Japanese WordPress site cannot even make a simple index page of articles properly.

WordPress core team is not really paying attention to the multilingual functionality of WordPress much.

tenpura-san was carefully explain

  • The problem of current WordPress Multilingual Function at core
  • The multilingual function WordPress core is going to wrong direction now. Why he think so.
  • Japanese users need to raise their voices to appeal why implementing multilingual function to WordPress core (to centain extent) is very important

I am 100% agree with tenpura-san’s argument as I have been leading concrete5 CMS Japanese package for over 5 years.

I will continue to encourage Japanese users to raise their voice.

 

 

In order to improve multilingual function of WordPress

日本語ユーザー全体の課題

Therefore, I also think that people can help WordPress community by getting involved:

  • Attend WordCamp all over the world, and speak about the importance of multilingualization
  • When you see a discussion about multilingual functionality of WordPress, they should look at WP Multibyte Patch and try to merge into the core as much as possible.
  • We need to support any pull requests or feature requests to improve the multilingual functionality of WordPress core. If anyone is having hard time explaining in English, you can call me and ask me for translation. I can explain using my own experience involving concrete5 CMS.
  • If we failed to do so, WordPress may (or will) lose the market share in Japan and Asia.

 

 

During the WordCamp party, I had a brief conversation with tenpura-san, we couldn’t agree more that there are too few people to realize the importance of the problem.

 

Let me share with my own experience with concrete5 CMS.

We are able to include a lot of multilingual functionality into the concrete5 core.

Thanks to

When you look at the number of commits on concrete5 GitHub, mlocati, #2 contributor and hissy, #11 contributor of concrete5 and others are actively involved to improve and lead concrete5 multilingual functionality at core.

WordPress community should also get involved more to improve the WordPress multilingual functionality.

Otherwise, I think that WordPress will not be able to obtain marketshare in Asia where the most developing country among web.

 

Re-discover the importance of Getting Involved to the Open Source Community

WordPress is a free software. But it’s also open source software.

You won’t have to do anything to get the benefit.

However, people need to contribute to the community if you receive the benefit. You must return the benefit to the community.

In fact, in Japan, many Japanese enterprises ended up spending millions of Japanese yens due to the lack of open source involvement. According to this Japanese tech article, Struts 1, a JAVA application framework, are widely used open source framework in Japan, however, none of Japanese companies was contributing the community. The Struts team stopped maintaining the framework. As a result, the vulnerability didn’t get fixed. Japanese enterprises ended up spending millions of yen fixing those security holes by themselves.

Open Source is open source. You get to decide where to join.

But if you are receiving the benefit, you must return to the community.

Photo by Hoshino-san

I had a chance to talk with Miyauchi-san from WP Total Hacksm, and Naoko Takano from Automattic.

What Miyauchi-san felt proud of WordPress community was that you can easily get involved in the world-wide community, and you can open the door.

When he sees his codes merged into the core, when he heard the comment that people use his plug-ins at various WordCamp event, he always get the sense of fulfillment.

In addition, he wanted to spotlight to more people, who are contributing to the WordPress community, at WordCamp events in Japan.

 

Recently my few commits were being merged into the concrete5 core. A guy who has filmmaking degree can even contribute to the software as long as you know what you’re doing. And I felt very honor, excited and satisfied that people from all over the world will use my code.

Last year, Kite Koga, the director of WordCamp Kansai 2015, attending our own WordFes Nagoya 2014 to give a presentation about contributing to the WordPress. This year, he was leading WordCamp Kansai 2015.

 

 

By the way, you can still register to our own WordPress event, WordFes Nagoya 2015 🙂

 

Get involved in WordPress community!

It’s fun.

You may be able to find significant others. (from the person who has the exact experience).

You can make a familty

 

 

I had a great fun at WordCamp Kansai 2015.

Lastly, it was finally pleasure to meet Kel from DigitalCube, and Maciej from OnTheGoSystem. (I’m a unlimited license holder of WPML.)

We drove back to Nagoya with such a great WordPress team.

 

 

 

Oh, sometime try concrete5 when you have a chance 🙂