Localizing/Translating wordpress plugins and themes names and descriptions

Cool small localization feature that WordPress has is the ability to localize/translate the meta data of a plugins and theme. If plugin and theme authors will actually use it, it will enable localizers to provide a totally localized experience to the users even on the plugin and theme management pages.

This feature is very easy to activate, you should just add two lines into your plugin or theme header block

Text Domain: mytextdomain
Domain Path: lang_folder

where “Text domain” (mytextdomain in this example) is the text domain you used for your plugin/theme localization in the __e() and __() calls, and “Domain path” (here it is lang_folder) is the directory under your plugin/theme root directory in which the *.mo file resides.

For plugins, you can localize Name, PluginURI, Description, Author, AuthorURI, Version. For themes, you can localize Name, Description, Author, Version, ThemeURI, AuthorURI, Status.

While localizing Author info is probably not very moral, and localizing version probably not very smart, it is possible to localize the PluginURI and ThemeURI so they will point to a support/info URL relevant for that local. In other words, a plugin/theme developer can set up support page in english and another one in spanish, and use localization to point the spanish users to the spanish support page instead of the english one.

The only problem left is how to put those strings into your *.pot/*.po file.

For the plugin header below

Name: Plugin name
Description: Plugin description
Author: me
Version: 1.0
PluginURI: http://example.com/plugin
Text domain: mytextdomain
Domain Path: /lang

you can add the following code which enables the localization of only the name and description of the plugin. The location of this snippet in your code is not important as long as poedit can parse the file and conclude that ‘Plugin name’ and ‘Plugin description’ are translatable strings

_plagin_header_local = array(
__('Plugin name','mytextdomain'),
__('Plugin description','mytextdomain')

There are also other methods to achieve the same effect.

Relevant reading: Jacob Santos and Viper007Bond wrote on this feature.

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