Localising Your Application

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You can localise your application, for a group of end users, by making sure that all textual elements presented to those end users appear in a language that is optimally understandable to them. Textual elements include window titles, web page titles, field prompts, text used in menu options, error messages, warnings and information messages.

You may need to localise because some of your end users must be served in a different language than English. This is a straighforward translation need.

But localisation also allows you to tailor message texts and other texts to the specific needs of a user community. For example, British users may need to be presented with British spelling. Or you may decide to edit a standard USoft message text to something that you find more correct, or more clear, or more suitable to your audience.

In theory, localisation could even apply to culture-specific graphics, such as icons or a particular screen layout. However, the USoft platform only offers localisation features for text.

It is, of course, possible that you do not require any form of localisation at all. If you develop for an English-speaking audience, you can leave the decision to localise until later.

Localisation at development time

At development time, localisation has 2 aspects:

Making sure that your USoft application appears with the desired translated or customised texts in the first place.

Creating multiple versions of a USoft application, each for a different group of end users.

If you are creating only a single version, load the standard USoft-defined text elements and customise them to meet your needs. If you are creating multiple versions, you need to define an additional Language in USoft Definer for each additional version.

Localisation at runtime

At runtime, localisation is fully automatic except when you are offering multiple versions of your application. In that case, a user must know how to select the desired version or language, or an administrator must know how to select the correct version or language for a group of users:

If you run a Rules Service, as for a web application or REST application, the "Language" Rules Engine parameter determines which version is presented to end users of the Rules Service.

If you distribute USoft Binder files, as for a client/server or Batch application, the "Language" Project Property in the Binder file determines which version is presented to end users of that Binder file.

It is also possible to develop an application feature that lets individual end users switch languages dynamically while they are using the application.

Old use is that you specify the language to be activated at runtime by a *language:language entry in the USDI file placed in the APP directory of the usoft install directory.


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Application Strings and System Messages