Content, page and user language

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Semantic MediaWiki is mostly concerned with the following three language "types" provided by MediaWiki:

  • Site content language (or content language), the language in which the content of a page is written in wikitext by default. Set by the system administrator via the "LocalSettings.php" file.
  • Page content language (or page language), the language in which the content of a page is explicitly written in wikitext. Set by the user via the interlanguagelink parser function (see extension "Semantic Interlanguage Links").
  • User interface language (or user language), the language a user chooses to operate in. Set by the user via special page "Preferences".


Content language

The site language or better content language has a distinct responsibility with some content components being strict language dependent and therefore require a different interpretation1 once the language is altered. Content components that are bound to be changed include:

  • Numeric separators ( , vs. .)
  • Localized label identifiers such as "Catégorie", "Kategorie"
  • Boolean identifiers as defined in `smw_true_words` and `smw_false_words`
  • Behaviour switches such as __SECTIONNONEDITABLE__, __ABSCHNITTE_NICHT_BEARBEITEN__
  • Variables such as {{NOMSITE}}, {{PROJEKTNAME}}
  • Function such as {{URLCOMPLETE:page}}, {{VOLLSTÄNDIGE_URL:Seite}}
  • etc

It should also be noted that the content language is a reference point when storing data in a canonical form is not possible.

Notes

Semantic MediaWiki 2.4.0 and 2.5.0 implement support to incorporate some of those different language options and more closely pay attention to the intended language of a content (denoted through the page content language) or a user preferred formatting.

MediaWiki also operates with other so called language variants which are of lesser concern for Semantic MediaWiki.

See also