[wp-hackers] opinions for a multi-language plugin for WordPress

Leo germani leogermani at gmail.com
Mon Feb 14 21:54:14 UTC 2011

Hi all,

Im working on a multi-language plugin for WordPress. Ive written this long
message describing what Ive seen so far and what is my idea of
implementation. If you are interested in it and want to share some ideas,
please read the message below. I would love to get some feedback.


1. What Ive seen

The 2 best plugins Ive seen are Q-Translate and WPML.

Why I dont like them:

Q-Translate -> saves the content of the post int the same post_content field
of the database, separating the languages with html comments.. When the
theme outputs the content of a post, it gets filtered and displays only one
language. Appart from that, this is an excelent plugin. But I junt cant
sleep well at night knowing my database is like this...

WPML -> creates a lot of extra tables in a complex database structure and is
associated with a translating service. In the top of that, the plugin does a
lot more than juts adding the multi language support and claims itself as a
cms solution for wordpress... I like plugin that do only one thing very well

2. How do I think that can be done?

2.1 translating posts

First, I think it can be done without adding any extra table or doing
anything out of the database structure.

The approach Im using is to treat translations as post types. So, for
instance, if I would translate my posts to spanish, there would be the
native "post" post type and the plugin would add the "post_translation_es"
post type.

In the edit posts screen, there would be an extra column called
'translations' that would show for each post if it already have the spanish
translation. If it has, there is a button 'edit', if it dont, 'add'. If you
go to the edit screen of the spanish posts, you would see the same thing,
the other way round.

This part is already coded and working fine.

2.2 translating everything else (appart from taxonomies)

I think its nice to be able to translate everything on the site (The site
title, te text of a text widget, etc). So what Im trying to do is to add a
filter in get_option() and update/add_option() to allways check which
language are we visiting right now (int the front end or the admin, does not
matter) and allways look for a corresponding option in the current language.

For instance.. if you do a get_option('option_name') and are visiting the
spanish site, it will try to find an option called 'option_name_es'. If
there is not, it will get the default. Same thing when saving.

You can have a look at the code here:


edit_screen.php has all the code that handles the extra post type.
wp_options.php has all the code that handles the get_optino/update_option

Most of the rest is rubbish.. many things copied from Q Translate... this is
just a proof of concept.

If you got all the way here, thanks very much for your attention, please
share your insights



More information about the wp-hackers mailing list