How To Translate EmberJS Apps

Software localization

This step-by-step guide will show you how to localize EmberJS apps. Prerequisites Create a new, blank EmberJS application: ember new demoapp Switch to the newly created demo app directory and install the i18n add-on: npm install ember-cli-i18n --save-dev Next, create two language files, Englisch (en) and German (de): ember generate locale en ember generate locale […]
Software localization blog category featured image | Phrase

This step-by-step guide will show you how to localize EmberJS apps.

Prerequisites

Create a new, blank EmberJS application:

ember new demoapp

Switch to the newly created demo app directory and install the i18n add-on:

npm install ember-cli-i18n --save-dev

Next, create two language files, Englisch (en) and German (de):

ember generate locale en

ember generate locale de

Language Files

Language files (locales) hold all translatable strings that are used in your application code and templates. The format is simple:

// app/locales/en.js

export default {

  "greeting": "Hello User",

  "task-create": "Create new task",

  "task-delete": "Delete task",

  "task-open": "You have open tasks"

};

Strings can also be grouped:

// app/locales/en.js

export default {

  greeting: "Hello User",

  "task": {

    "create": "Create new task",

    "fail": "Delete task",

    "open": "You have open tasks"

  }

};

You can use Placeholders…

// app/locales/en.js

export default {

  "greeting": "Hello %@",

  "task": {

    "create": "Create new task",

    "fail": "Delete task",

    "open": "You have %@ open tasks"

  }

};

… and Pluralization (CLDR pluralization format):

// app/locales/en.js

export default {

  "greeting": "Hello %@",

  "task": {

    "create": "Create new task"

    "fail": "Delete task"

    "open": {

      "zero": "Nothing to do",

      "one": "One open task",

      "other": "You have %@ open tasks"

    }

  }

};

Using Language Files

Set a default language that is used as a fallback in config/enviroment.js:

// config/enviroment.js

var ENV = {

  APP: {

    // ...

    defaultLocale: 'en',

  }

};

And in your main app/app.js, set the current locale to be used:

// app/app.js

var App = Ember.Application.extend({

  // ...

  locale: 'de'

});

In your templates and app code you can use the ‘t’ helper function (‘t’ for translate) for loading strings from the current locale. The t function is available in all templates, controllers, components, routes, and models.

You can load translated strings into your templates:

<h1>{{t 'greeting'}}</h1>

<h2>{{t 'task.create'}}</h2>

<h2>{{t 'task.delete'}}</h2>

Or in your code:

alert(this.t('task.open', 42));

Managing Translations

Working with the .js language files can be tricky and translating strings in a text editor also isn’t a very convenient workflow.

Phrase is a translation management tool that addresses some of these issues. It features a powerful In-Context Editor (Demo), making the process of translating web apps more convenient. Integrating the Phrase In-Context Editor in your EmberJS apps is easy.

Install the Phrase add-on:

npm install ember-cli-phraseapp --save-dev

Add some Phrase configuration to your app/app.js:

// app/app.js

var ENV = {

  APP: {

    // ...

    defaultLocale: 'en',

    locale: 'de',

    phraseEnabled: true,

    phrasePrefix: '{{__',

    phraseSuffix: '__}}'

  }

};

Then include the JavaScript snippet into your templates:

<script>

    window.PHRASEAPP_CONFIG = {

        projectId: "YOUR-PROJECT-ID"

    };

    (function() {

        var phraseapp = document.createElement('script'); phraseapp.type = 'text/javascript'; phraseapp.async = true;

        phraseapp.src = ['https://', 'phraseapp.com/assets/in-context-editor/2.0/app.js?', new Date().getTime()].join('');

        var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(phraseapp, s);

    })();

</script>

You can find your Project-ID in the Phrase Translation Center.

ember-cli-phraseapp acts as a replacement for ember-cli-i18n. When phraseEnabled is set to true, string keys are exposed to the to the In-Context-Editor.

Wrapping Up

We hope this short introductory guide was helpful to you. To get deeper into the EmberJS framework, make sure to go take a look at the official EmberJS website and the ember-cli-i18n GitHub repo.

If you feel like venturing a bit and exploring what software internationalization can look like in other JavaScript frameworks, feel free to drop by the following tutorials:

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