Second Life: Coming Soon in Ten Languages

There’s been a quiet revolution going on, as international Second Life Residents and a small number of Lindens work together to translate tens of thousands of text strings and critical web pages into nine key languages. In another month (depending on QA time) the full viewer will be live in German, French, Korean, and Japanese. It will also be partially localized into Spanish, Chinese, Brazilian Portuguese and Danish.   We’ll continue to work on these languages, and plan to begin Italian and Dutch next. The goal is a high quality Second Life viewer and website available to all Residents communicating in each language.

While many companies have benefited from the translation efforts of their communities, including Facebook and Google, we’ve found that Second Life Residents are producing a particularly outstanding quality of work because they understand the intricacies of Second Life and they work closely together through constant communication, inworld meetings and discussions.

With PJIRA serving as a base, these international groups are translating Knowledge Base articles, viewer strings and web pages as part of a pilot project in German and French.  This project anticipates a new translation portal which will open later this year and will contain several localization tools to facilitate easier, quicker and better quality translations, not only for German and French but for many more languages. The current effort in PJIRA is helping us flush out the work flow and specifications for the portal.

What makes this project successful is the extraordinary effort of the international community of Second Life Resident volunteers, working with a small team of Lindens, including Noelle, Simone and Lexie, and led by Danica Linden. At this writing, the German Knowledge Base has grown from 50 to 100 articles, viewer strings are being reviewed by Residents, and we were able to expedite localization of Land Pages, the Installer and Registration in just a month and a half!  Many thanks to the Resident volunteers, and a particular shout out to Tom32 Anatine, Lore Lamont, Torben Trautman and Ourasi Ferraris for their work this summer, and to Tue Torok for stepping up and leading the Danish project.

You can read about some of the work this team is doing on the Second Life wiki.

For language specific projects: German Knowledge Base Localization and French Viewer Localization.

You can also read about other community translation initiatives that are currently active.

About Robin Linden

Be the Change. You must be the change you wish to see in the world. ---Mahatma Gandhi
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127 Responses to Second Life: Coming Soon in Ten Languages

  1. Ann Otoole says:


  2. Sweet!

  3. Desmond Shang says:

    Great stuff Robin!

    I took a look at the wiki stuff… is there a generalised website address we can show new residents, such that they can pick their own language link saying: “Common questions answered here”?

    I can’t always tell what language people are using, and have run across many non-English speakers needing help over the years.

    Warm regards,


  4. It is very nice to see this! It really is all about bringing people together 🙂

  5. shifzr says:

    well meant, undoubtedly. but very unexciting news, sadly ;]
    in most countries english is tought from an early age, and that may be one of the reasons why participation in SL is as international as it is.
    maybe this is also the place to voice my annoyance with viewers opening on me in a different language after an update, just because my pc’s localisation says so, yes?

  6. TheTree says:

    @2 (Dilbert Dilweg): the literal translation of “sweet” does not have the same meaning as it has in english in most of these languages.
    Rather use “cool”, which should have been adapted by most languages in some way xD.

  7. This should help drive more traffic to Second Life. I know it would be difficult to use if it was in a language I couldn’t read. It would be nice to have sometime of translator built in. So that others chat can be translated into your language so you could understand what they are saying better.

  8. leliel Mirihi says:

    @5 shifzr

    You mean like in Japan where they are required to take several years of English in order to graduate from middle school, high school, and collage yet the majority of the population speaks less English then the average illegal immigrant living in California does.

  9. Kakurady says:

    I wonder if there’s anyone other than me who’s doing or did some translation for SL into Chinese?

  10. Bryon Ruxton says:

    I can understand some advantages behind community translation. You should be wary however about relying on what could be non-professional volunteers and a weak quality assurance by other “non-verified” translators.

    I am not sure about your process in this regard, but
    I have just looked at three translations, and two of them had spelling or grammar mistakes while marked a passing the QA. The process seems a bit rushed…

    I would recommend having professional translators or copy-editors doing another pass of quality control, on the text strings most especially, if your don’t already plan to.

    Also I am still waiting for the “official internationalization” of the Community Standards from Linden Lab. (other than resident translated for this purpose). It would nice and useful by now.

  11. The Crasher says:

    nice, now i can crash every 1/2 hour without reason but in many different languages …

  12. As the founder of the by now oldest and largest in-world translation and copywriting agency in SL (Babel Translations, ) I welcome this! My daily experience shows that there is a huge international community, outweighing the native English speakers, and that they struggle with the predominance of english in SL. One client even had the DMCA and TOS of SL translated by me. Catering to the major languages is important – because international visitors are important for the variety in SL.

  13. Sierra says:

    Careful though, make sure it’s correct and passes a proper QA. We have enough problems communicating amongst ourselves, last thing we need is something to be lost in translation.

  14. im getting tired of having to switch the site back to english every time.
    your current german translation is an eyesore and an insult to me. if you feel like you have to translate everything then fine, but please dont force this on me.

  15. Dos Yumako says:

    Translating sounds good – I’ve met several ppl that have had problems with the Client because of the language
    I’d very much like to CHOOSE MYSELF the language I use in SL

  16. Pingback: Community Chest » Second Life en français, complètement en français

  17. ZoHa Boa says:

    Good idea, and important for international users.

    But.. now it’s easy to explain something to somebody: click on world-> about land -> media settings, ….

    What will these words be in spanisch for exemple???

  18. Pingback: SL-viewer Gets Translated « Wir sprechen Online.

  19. ulla says:

    the blog seems pretty useless lately and got really boring. a post every 2 weeks and most is not very interesting. where is torley? where are the update announcements? (yeah i know where they are, but without this stuff the blog here is pretty useless and dead)

  20. Burgess Miles says:

    Danish? Surely there would be more call for swedish if you’re choosing a scandinavian language??

  21. Burgess Miles says:

    …and I agree with #21…give us a worthwhile blog…

  22. Raven Primeau says:

    And I agree with 21 & 23, plus how about updating the grid status update page seeing as SL went next to useless over the weekend following a sudden inability to change clothing and all attachments SL has ran like paddling through syrup, with 20 min load times when TPing…..its pants 😦

    What wass worse is the silence from LL apart from a blue flash to say there wa something amiss, which I missed as I was trying to relog (4times).

    SO I ask is this a return to the old ways then when LL dug in and left us uninformed and frustrated.

  23. Noi Lilliehook says:

    This is just a translation, where is the revolution?

    Please make your client comply with the Unicode standards first (Just like every operating system, Web browser, IM service or even dumb mobile handset.)

    It is 2008. We do expect an “International” IM service to be able to send and receive Unicode strings properly. will be a great place to start. Many of us read and write in a different reading order. Many of our scripts are complex (having more than one reading order in a sentence). Every other IM solution I’ve seen handles Unicode correctly. Until you do so, you are not even a player in that league.

    An international IM service must be international FIST before it stars its localization efforts. Otherwise, this effort looks ridiculous.

  24. So viewer and website will speak different languages. Nice. But when will you start to understand the language of your customers when they ask for more transparency instead of an amok running G-Team or jira answers in the style of “won’t do it” (with a silently added “now live with it and just throw away your brand new $ 100+ hardware”). Please learn the language “how to communicate with those that pay our wages”.

  25. Paulo Dielli says:

    LL webpage: okay. Viewer: bad idea. It’s already hard to explain something to German customers, because they have the German viewer. With all new languages it will become almost impossible to help people. What is ‘right-click and select Edit’ in Korean or Japanese?

  26. Willie Sheridan says:

    No polish translation ?This nation is pretty big and sadly they still have problems with english language,dont understand why there will be no polish translation…

  27. Anna Gulaev says:

    Does the latest RC viewer contain all the latest localization strings?

  28. Kitti says:

    Oh, great… Now we can crash and leak memory in 9 languages. Why Lindens add things like this when the very basics in SL viewer is broken? Fix huge memory leaks and performance problems first and after that add new things!

  29. Wandolf says:

    “Don’t forget to “abbzze” ”

    best greetings from tasty hax.

    “des gen mir gut gefalle” said “ashanti”

  30. Lulzburger says:

    @ 9

    Hipihi seem to be doing a good job of translating sl into chinese 😀

  31. Pingback: Second Life: Coming Soon in Ten Languages « Common|Sensible

  32. Alvi Halderman says:

    Very nice. I know a lot of ppl that dunno a lot of things in English and they don’t get so well for what is each thing of SL. So i think this will help a lot for orientation of ppl that talk just German, French, Korean, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese, Brazilian Portuguese and Danis! :D.
    Very good news!


  33. Richard Trigaux says:

    I am glad for our international visitors 🙂

    Suggestion: chinese translation too 🙂
    although I don’t know if chineses are numerous in SL. But things move fast in China 🙂

  34. What would be nice was if Linden Lab adopted & embedded the Simbolic Translator into the viewer. This would make Second Life a much more communicative platform, as people would be able to speak with almost anyone. It translates 24 languages, and has been a vital tool to my business relationships with my clients. LL is making great strides to make this an international community, and hopefully will integrate translation tools one day to help break the language barriers 😉 To all; Have a GREAT Second Life!

  35. Sandor Balczo says:

    I am pretty sad to hear that Italian has been placed among the languages to be added next.

    Perhaps I am the only one to see this, but I feel the Italians are a substantial and thriving community in Second Life, in spite of all the efforts some English speakers do to put them down when they utter a single word in their own language in public. Spanish speakers are somewhat more respected, I guess it is a matter of quantity, since they are more numerous.

    Which leads me to say that before making localized versions of SL, LL should teach people to respect other cultures.

    I fear that localizing SL has the ingrained risk of generating language ghettos, while now we are provided with a wonderful ground for mutual assistance that a far from easy GUI and a foreign language (English – a foreign language for most SL users) now provides to those who are fortunate enough to find trilingual speakers (English, Italian and French) like me.

    And of course, no one at LL seems to care about improving the viewer which is something we have been asking for years in at least 10 or 15 languages including Sanskrit. This is suicidal.

    Sandor 🙂

  36. mcp Moriarty says:

    So does this mean bug reports can be submitted in 10 languages? lol

  37. Rene Erlanger says:

    it could also mean this is a means of LL generating more money from Classified adverts, instead of listing keywords mostly in English….you’ll now have to create several adverts in other languages to reach your target audience.

  38. cherrie jubilee says:

    I understand that english is the worlds second most language,and like someone else said most learn it early in life, so why must we all have to try to translate when so many do speak english but refuse to? Why not devide SL into the countries so those who don’t wish to speak in english can play in their own country and speak their home language? I personally have trouble with coming across anyone lately who does or is willing to speak english. It gets kinda lonely.Not really the social game it used to be.

  39. Sandor Balczo says:

    What Cherrie Jubilee (40) just said proves my point at 37, language ghettos. At least one person seems to want them already. :).

    Be careful, LL. Please do not create more problems than you did already.

    Sandor 🙂

  40. Nisha Clip says:

    to have Russian Interface would be graet also i think^^

  41. Gigs says:

    I knew you could do it! 🙂

  42. Ghosty Kips says:

    I have found my translator HUD more and more useful as time passes, and folks that I’ve conversed with using it have appreciated it. Folks might not want to learn another language, but they do want to communicate and the translator allows that to happen. I’m all for the interfaces in different languages; no one should be forced into learning another language to partake in a global happening like SL. A good translator allows interaction to happen in a way that doesn’t force one culture’s language barriers on another.

  43. vista Lupindo says:

    Is the best-mentioned languages from Arabic or what?
    Will the next version will support the writing of Arabic or what?

    Actually I’m one of the Arabian in SL .. What I want to say is that there are many Arabian people in SL and many have Premium accounts. And what’s more is that many of this people don’t even know the English language and have a hard time when they are trying to communicate with others !
    We Arabian people do enjoy the sl and like to express ourselves more by being able to talk in our own language
    If that happened we could even invest more .. in both our time and L$ .

    We want to write the Arabic language, such as Paltalk Arab and other programs that support Arabic writing

  44. Mirella Dallagio says:

    I don’t plan to use any interface in my native language.
    I am a premium user, and I want to continue using english in programs and website.


    don’t assume they want the website in spanish just because they live in spain.

    Otherwise, english for everybody, as it has been so far.

  45. Saii says:

    I’ll give you guys from Linden Labs a headstart for the dutch translation, here’s one of the most recurring text:

    “Er zijn momenteel problemen met de asset server.”
    (We are currently experiencing problems with the asset server.)

  46. Darien Caldwell says:

    I have to agree with 15, 16, and 46. The choice of the language presented on the website and the viewer should be left up to the person reading it, and not auto-decided for them based on region.

    If you’re thinking it’s already their choice, you’re wrong. The accounts page and other pages on the website do not allow the user to choose their language, but instead present it in their detected localized language. This practice should be stopped.

  47. les says:

    Corporate volunteers are the craziest people.

    What is the logic behind making some one else money for a pat on the back?

    How do you say sucker in french?

  48. Woot !!

    Robin wins the “1st Linden blog post of October ’08” !!

  49. Chantal Fielding says:

    I think this is a wonderful addition to the service. It was about time that different languages were addressed properly. Keep up the good work!

    btw..when I followed the link for PJIRA…it’s Lexie Linden who happens to be the lead of this project. You may want to fix the blog announcement!

  50. Foxxe Wilder says:

    Ahhh such a very sweet gesture to the international world. THEN you can disappoint people with SL’s economic depression in 10 languages!

    Now THAT is impressive.

    (now… anyone wanna buy a bridge for cheap?)

  51. razor says:

    great idea to add more languages.. that way sl can get more users..
    id like to have sl in english, not my native language. much easier when you work together with others and communicate about menus etc

  52. Yann Dufaux says:

    Localisation Fr –

    Merci à tous le team pour les traductions en français, je dois dire que la version 1.21.5 RC m’impressionne grandement!!

    Thank you to all for translations in French, This version RC 1.21.5 is very impressiv 🙂

  53. Tamara Czervik says:

    When SL interface will be aviable also in Romanian language, please?
    We are europeans too, not only German, English, Spanish and Italian.

  54. Galena Qi says:

    I have no problem with localizing the web pages so long as you give the user the choice to change their language preference and have that preference stored in the program file. That should be easy enough to do.

    I have a suggestion, though, along these lines. I would like to have the ability to switch viewer languages while logged in (maybe in the Advanced menu, so as not to complicate things). This would really help those of us who like to help newbies from other languages but don’t know all the menu translations.

  55. Jarek Dejavu says:

    I did a Czech translation before more then year and half ago, if you are interested in, Linden Lab 🙂 I will provide for free of course.

  56. Jarek Dejavu says:

    Here is a link It needs to be just a little changed for current SL version. I have not been maintaining it last months. I can do it in few days, if you want to include it in SL… Its 90 percents translated. Planing to do last 10 percents till the end of this week

  57. Alyx Sands says:

    #11: I’m a professional translator. As soon as RL work allows, I *will* proofread some of the translations. Just don’t assume everyone who is working on localisation is a non-professional. Or that professionals don’t care. Thank you.

  58. Babel Fish says:

    If the viewer is available in multiple languages, just who is going to be supporting them? Is LL going to have people available on the phonelines/helpdesk who read and speak each of the languages mentioned??? If the viewer install is going to select the language for you, that suggests the downloaded file has to contain all languages. Can we say ‘bloatware’.

  59. Ewokian Pessoa says:

    Hello all,

    I was wondering why Brazilian Portuguese when the mother language is Portuguese, from… Portugal, the language derives from there and from there the language was spread throughout the world, not the other way around. *winks* Just a curiosity of mine…. because tho in the top10 of most spoken languages, only in Brazil you speak Brazilian Portuguese, everywhere else, either in Africa (Angola, Moçambique, São Tomé e Príncipe and so on), Asia (East Timor and Macau) or other countries with portuguese speaking communities you speak portuguese… from Portugal. You should base the work on the roots of the language and not the derivation of it i think… (even MS does that same error, but they… well, nevermind lol)

    On a side note, i think there are more serious problems to address either than working on a translation, because if you are online, I’m sure everyone, one way or the other, scratches some english to get by… after all it’s the universal language and people should learn it and only by using it they will learn how to understand it…

    Anyway, sorry if I seem to act a bit pretentiously… lol

    Stay cool,

  60. Well done! I love hearing about these positive community efforts…

  61. Credit where it’s due..

    Nice move LL.

  62. Alee Hax says:

    good news but what about arabic ????

  63. Xe Oh says:

    Hello LL,

    My native language is English. I Speak some Spanish and some French, but do not write them well, because of this a lot gets lost in translation.

    Most of my SL friends are from the EU and they speak english much better then the Spanish or French I can type.

    My first impression of this was that it would serve as a great way to unite people from around the world, which would be a great goal.

    My second impression is that it will cause division between people in SL when the world most desperately needs cross cultural unity and understanding.

    Please let people chose the languages that they want to communicate in for the sake of unity.

  64. Tegg B says:

    cherrie jubilee Says:”I understand that english is the worlds second most language,and like someone else said most learn it early in life, so why must we all have to try to translate when so many do speak english but refuse to? Why not devide SL into the countries so those who don’t wish to speak in english can play in their own country and speak their home language? I personally have trouble with coming across anyone lately who does or is willing to speak english. It gets kinda lonely.Not really the social game it used to be.”
    I’ve never had a problem finding English speaking people on the “graveyard shift”, of course you may have to be prepared to hang out with Aussies or Poms 🙂

  65. Catwise Yoshikawa says:

    I hope a better spanish than the beta spanish viwer we already have ^^’
    In fact I use the english one, I’m from Spain and can’t understand the spanish one 😉

  66. Handy Man says:

    Robin said :

    “The goal is a high quality Second Life viewer and website available to all Residents communicating in each language.”

    roflmao……….this would realy be something new

    and she said:

    “……Second Life Residents are producing a particularly outstanding quality of work because they understand the intricacies of Second Life and they work closely together through constant communication, inworld meetings and discussions.”

    HMMM……..communicating, understanding the intricacies !!!!!!!!!

    WOW maybe you guys at the Lab could learn something here:)

    Communicating would be a good start……….whether you do this in English, German, Japanese, Chinese, Italian…….who cares just communicate with the residents 😉

    Ok on Topic:

    Pretty good idea as long as the translations don’t end up looking like the instructions for using a washing machine written by a chinaman in german who can only speach french 😉

    Oh……..the Lab isn’t doing much of the translations…… should be ok 🙂

  67. Leeloo Nykvist says:

    I will not be switching the viewer to Danish (not the website). I’ve seen enough useless translations, which – while correct from a word by word perspective – have completely lost the meaning. I mean, if even Microsoft can’t do it, with their billions of dollars and professional translators, am I really expected to believe that Linden Lab can pull it off?

    As for those complaining about the web site auto detecting the language and not asking: Look in your browsers “settings” or “preferences”. There is a language setting. Make sure it is set to English before complaining. This is where the choice should be made. Not in a dropdown on the page itself, which may be saved in a cookie, but some of us have set our browsers to delete cookies when we close the browser, so we would have to select English every time. And definitely not by IP-address, like Google does it.

  68. Malarthi Behemoth says:

    Usually I don’t comment on blog posts, but after reading some of the criticism about memory leaks etc, I feel compelled to comment. Are those of you who are saying things need to be fixed and things need to be better and things need doing RIGHT NOW actually doing anything yourselves to address the issue? There are a lot of ways to help, from beta testing new release candidate clients to testing open source clients. You could write code for a new feature you’re particularly interested in seeing that LL hasn’t addressed yet. You could debug code. You could even try your hand at isolating the various memory leaks and crash bugs that plague the client and see what you can do to fix them. That would make Second Life a better place for us all, and people would thank you. These translations got done because people took initiative and did something they thought was worth doing, not because anyone is paying them but because they want to use their talents to contribute to the communal happiness of Second Life residents everywhere.
    I’m not saying that every word on the LL blog is gold, I’m not saying that everything is peachy, that we’re not in the middle of hard times in terms of community and software both, but if people want to get things fixed then FIX THEM. Because no one else will do it right.

  69. Jonathen Snow says:

    The company who has no clue about “communicating with people” and “Doing what the customer wants” is now gonna lead an effort to translate this same thing into different languages.
    Ofcourse LL is again showing their great understanding about communities right away with mentioning Danisch as one of the first translations. Probebly LL does not know that Danmark is a very small country and that about everybody there does speak english rather well. And, How many Dutch people did you ever meat that do not speak english?
    I personally HATE programs and websites that offer me unasked things in my own language while I am so used to work in Englisch all the time.
    A dutch guy.

  70. So, just how many ways can you say:

    “Give us a more stable world NOW”?

    Either that or:

    “This Sucks”

  71. Sandor Balczo says:


    Malarthi, your point of view would be perfectly acceptable if Second Life were a free service and if LL listened to consumers’ complaints and suggestions.

    Since most of us pay real money to be in SL, whether to purchase clothes, buy land or pay tier fees, Linden Lab should at least make sure their top priority is a stable viewer and a stable server cluster. In spite of periodic assurances that things will improve, some people have been here since 2003 and saw SL going from bad to worse. SL is what I personally call “pretendware”, a software you WILL use PRETENDING it works when it does not. Like the telephone when monopoly was allowed.

    As for listening to customers, this is far from true. I cannot remember one single occasion where LL’s decisions reflected customers’ viewpoints, even when these decisions were welcome. And actually, when these decisions WERE welcome, the result was a mixed blessing. I am thinking of several bans, for instance, where there were no winners, we all lost.

    As for the customers transforming themselves from beta testers (which we already are 24/7) to programmers, please let me ask you: would you fix Microsoft Word if it had a bug? Of course not, you would be incensed at Microsoft because Microsoft Word costs money and programmers are paid good money for it. Well, Second Life costs money too and programmers are paid good money by LL too. Why should the customer fix a PAID programmer’s mistake, for free, without an apology from LL, to add insult to injury? That’s simply not acceptable, it is so unacceptable that it’s unreal.

    By the way, I use RCs regularly because sometimes they are BETTER than then regular viewer. That gives you an idea of the state of things.

    As I said previously, no translation will help Second Life viewer improve its stability, GOOD CODING will. And actually, if language versions are embedded in the same viewer, I shudder to think what bloatware it would become.

    Sandor 🙂

  72. Fire Centaur says:

    Great work – I wonder if this will also fix the problem where 99.5% of installations here in Korea fail on install!!!!

    (if the windows username is korean – SL DOESNT LOAD)

  73. Coventina Dalgleish says:

    Well will it make the game function any better seems to me you have many other issues that need dealing with than a ten language interface and are you using an english speaking population to create these translations, if so the level of employee you seem to use should make it very entertaining to those who speak the language oh by all means use one of the translation engines since it always gets a rise out of the other people when I use them ))

  74. waleed says:

    i suggest arabic language

  75. Sonja F says:

    @72 BOB

    Here’s the germany translation:

    “Gib uns jetzt eine stabilere Welt !”


    “Ist zum kotzen”

    hihihihi…….hope this helps Bob 🙂


  76. Darien Caldwell says:

    Thank you Leeloo, on comment 69, for providing some actual useful information:

    “As for those complaining about the web site auto detecting the language and not asking: Look in your browsers “settings” or “preferences”. There is a language setting. Make sure it is set to (your language of preference)”.

    I’m sure most people (like me) have never even looked at the options on the browser, let alone just magically “know” it has language settings that could affect a website’s content. I verified changing this does work with the accounts page.

    It only shows the website is inconsistent, since this setting does not affect the rest of the website.

  77. tonyno vella says:

    ohhh, I’m very happy to hear that….. it’s very important to have SL in different languages, imho.

  78. Maggie Darwin says:

    “The goal is a high quality Second Life viewer and website available to all Residents communicating in each language.”

    I agree with several previous posters. Let’s have “a high quality Second Life viewer” in English.

  79. Mikhail Obscure says:

    Wow, had to pinch myself, thought I was dreaming!
    A blog!!
    A blog with comments open???
    Reminds me of the bad old days before they stopped blogging in the move to force comments onto the forums and thus outta sight!
    Oh wow, its like reading the daily newspapers problems page after weeks of absence, a chance to get an idea of the latest issues and air off!
    Anyways my pennies worth, launguage translation needed to compete in the opensim future. Memory leak and slow texture loading are back with a vengance and need to be addressed as a matter of priority. Traffic future needs to be addressed urgently. Ad farm policy rocks. I am not prepared to be a paying beta tester on the main grid. Make users of the RC tier free and I may reconsider that last statement!
    So Guys,
    *******regular blog postings please********

  80. Aquarius Paravane says:

    @56 – I agree with Galena – I frequently communicate with people in other languages with or without machine translation help, but I don’t know the SL specific terms in other languages. Explaining Deeding to people in English is bad enough – how to explain it in French? So, dynamically switching language would be useful. Alternatively, having web pages where I could view the menus in other languages, or SL specific dictionaries where I could look up SL terms and find the approved translation would also work.
    Simbolic translation hud has been working well for the languages for which there is a proper character set. Just going through the list, the SL viewer provides no character set for Arabic and Hindi, and the Greek and Russian characters h a v e a b o u t a c h a r a c t e r s p a c e b e t w e e n e a c h c h a r a c t e r. So even without considering localization, users of those languages are disadvantaged when communicating with each other, or when using translation services.

  81. Eva Tiramisu says:

    I am curious as to why you chose danish? Swedes and ppl from Iceland understand Norwegain, as do Danes … then why go for a language only Danes and Nowegians would be able to read, instead of chosing Norwegian that more countries willl understand? Its like picking portugeese over spanish.

  82. Tue Torok says:

    Hey all.

    It’s kinda fun to see a lot of attacking LL for not putting their time and efforts into other projects than translation. In fact you could not attack them for a more useless reason.

    LL is not the ones doing to actual translations, they aid us that is working hard on getting out own country language into Second Life.

    I decided to start translating the client, cause i wanted more people from my own country in Second Life. I know that we in Denmark learn english at an early age. But also realize that not all in my country speak the language very well or at all.

    It’s is not LL that has chosen Danish, that is me. I am from Denmark and would like to have Second Life in my own language. I have spent over 15 hours so far on translating Second Life.

    If you want Second Life in your own language, i suggest you start translating.

    I will gladly assist you on how to get started with translating.

    Just send me an IM inworld or e-mail me at and i’ll give you a hand on getting SL in your own language.

    Best Regards

    Tue Torok

  83. Josh Neumann says:

    Terrific, thanks for the post.

  84. Those who complain about SL issues related to performance should leave this endeavor alone. It is a separate project among the many projects LL has. Don’t bark on this tree.

    Foxflame, I want to help you out, but Myspace hates me. Anyway, Torley Linden’s video tutorials will perhaps help.

  85. Razrcut Brooks says:


    So… um… when will LL announce what the direction of this blog will be? We were told several weeks ago to expect changes and an announcement in October…..

    Am I the only one who misses Torley’s silly videos on Fridays? They were silly yet interesting……………….

  86. Eva Tiramisu says:

    @#86 Ah that makes sense then. Good for you 🙂
    I am sure it was a lot of work, well done!

  87. Mikhail Obscure says:

    The fantastic x-lang translator gives me real-time almost flawless translation both ways when conversing, 23 languages supported. Highly recommended.

  88. Chrysala Desideri says:

    Everything in the WORLD puts italian translation last, lol.

    Not that i really need it personally, i’ll probably keep the interface in english just so i can explain it to the majority of noobs easier..

    however there are a lot of italians in SL that love the game but know next to no english… creative folks who flounder about the interfaces with a very slow learning curve exclusively due to language. I hope this will make their experience a lot more user friendly.

    shout out to my deutch spreching friends.. “heute die viewer, morgen das JIRA-system!”

    i’m Chrysala Desideri and i approved this posting.

    *muffled mic** “are we sure about that last bit? what does it MEAN?” **/muffled mic*

  89. Pingback: Second Life (vraiment) en français, c’est pour dans un mois !

  90. Torben Trautman says:

    Yay I made it into the blog *WOOT*

    Volunteering and crazyness often go hand in hand!
    But while we do the translations maybe the LL engineers work hard on fixing some bugs yay!

    @italian residents:
    Italian Mentors rock! When I’m volunteering in a new resident area and don’t find the right words you are the second fastest to show up and help out; not to mention that you bring some south-european party flair with you. I bet if you decide to do some translations there will be an italian knowledge base in no time *yaaay*

    About translation quality:
    That’s the cool thing about community projects hehe… The more people look at an article the less mistakes. Poor Tom has to read all our german translations and bring back the sense and readability after we’re done with them.

    One day there will be an bavarian edition of the viewer and the knowledge base!

  91. Veksyn Raviprakash says:

    While having a group translate is a good idea, and while this may be barking up the wrong tree (Even though there are no other trees to bark at) Maybe stability should come first.

    Event though you may be using a different team to translate-the main team should be patching up the leaky bucket that SL is. Then going on squashing those bugs. A parallel, more languages and more stable, at the same; Sense it has been made clear that its not LL that is actually doing the translations. I would love to be able to not randomly find everything I was wearing is gone in the middle of a PG sim do to the asset server going down while I’m changing clothes.

  92. Tillie Ariantho says:

    Yah… I am waiting for a fix for the ugly memory leak, the nvidia driver bug, the current slow loading of stuff (mainly textures) etc… and I am fully happy with that getting in ONE language only as long as it isnt big5 chinese or something. 😀

  93. Darck says:

    Excuse me… I’ve been trying too register for Second Life for hours now, my birth date being 1989. I keep putting that in, and I always get the message: You must be 13 or older too register…. and its driving me nuts, so, I tried my mothers birth date, 1955. And yet, I still got the Unable too register thing because of the 13 or older. What on earth is wrong? I’d really like too become a second life member…

  94. Hi… add new language always cool
    Let me work on arabic side !! i would love to have me support all and every one who speaks arabic 😉

  95. Glory Takashi says:

    Like they don’t have better things to do than encourage people not to speak one language in a world wide program. Lets just have the united nations with arguments in 100+ languages and no one understanding anyone else.

  96. Lionel Oliva says:

    Fascinating subject, the idea that all the programming code and so on is in everyone’s own particular language… I bet other companies would pay big bucks to see how LL does it!

  97. Woolich Ulich says:

    Ten lenguajes? Support too?

    A friend of me… one week trying to get support in her lenguaje (spanish). Nobody in Linden Lab speaks spanish?

    Why don´t you try to improve your support service first?

  98. Valter Biedermann says:

    Com certeza muitos brasileiros ficarão felizes com isso, e poderão aumentar seu conhecimento dentro do Second live. Agradeço o esforço de todos vocês por fazerem isso uma realidade para nós. Obrigado

    With many Brazilian certainty will be happy with that, and they can increase her knowledge inside of the Second live. I thank the effort of all you for they make that a reality for us. Thank you

  99. Great.
    I am glad for our international visitors

  100. Richard Trigaux says:

    @100 Glory Takashi

    So we shouls all speak one language?? And which one, please? Yours? what is your language please? Tsaguilius? Pidgoop? Marwatoon? Swazunlik? Or should I make the same reasoning than you, and impose you to speak MY language??? Please everybody speak smurf! 😀

  101. Richard Trigaux says:

    A tip: I am now sending a group notice in french. But in the title, some special letters are not allowed. And it looks really goofy and badly educated for a non-informed french speaker to read a call for a “danse francaise” (instead of “française”).

    So please take a part of your effort to allow for all the special characters of all the languages in common places like notice titles, etc. (Probably the specific problem with notices titles is that these titles are used as indexes in databases).

  102. Alex says:

    The question is, will the English version ever be fixed. Last time I saw the dialog box, it said I have been offered a object. This has been there for at least a year and a half. If we highly intellegent people at LL can’t even speak their natiive language at an elementary level, reaching out to the community may be a step up.

  103. Malarwen says:

    awesome! Wish you could do that for pretty much every language! I’m willing to help with Czech!

  104. Richard Trigaux says:

    what would be nice also is to have good translators on world, as we are often confronted to people with other language. Some exist, but they are not practical, or both locutors need to have them, or other inconveniences. But the most difficult problem is that none accounts with typos, at least the most common ones (orthographs correctors often find exact replacements for mispelled words)

  105. Richard Trigaux says:

    @6 Thetree

    Alas “cool has not a common sense. In the beginning it meaned “non-violent” or “peaceful” but now it is used to say “fashioned”. So…

  106. Tegg B says:

    101 Lionel Oliva Says: Fascinating subject, the idea that all the programming code and so on is in everyone’s own particular language… I bet other companies would pay big bucks to see how LL does it!
    Why? When they can do so for free with an infinite supply of unverified accounts? 🙂

  107. Ryou Yiyuan says:

    Nice a full SL into French

  108. Kimi D says:

    Aye you scoundrels, and when willah you start translating a Pirate viewer, ey? Yohoo – And a bottle of rum! Aye!

    (Me parrot nods too.)

  109. Nabulo vn says:


  110. Tegg B says:

    Kimi D Says: Aye you scoundrels, and when willah you start translating a Pirate viewer, ey? Yohoo – And a bottle of rum! Aye!
    (Me parrot nods too.)
    A drunken viewer would be great.
    My Tequila worm in the bottle nods too (well I can see it nodding anyway) 🙂

  111. Frustrated European says:

    That’s all well and good … but localization can mean more than just language. How about PAYMENT systems?

    Lots of folks outside the U.S. don’t have (or don’t like to use) credit cards. For example, in Germany (as in most other European countries), consumers make and receive most non-cash payments by bank transfers, which are quick (1-2 days) and free.

    Not to mention the hefty credit card fees when we charge in USD. (ouch!)

    How about opening up a EUR pay-in account in one or more major European countries? It would be quite easy: Just require people to put the full and exact name of the SL resident in the description field, automatically convert from EUR to L$ when the payments arrive, and post to the right SL account. People would have their L$ in just a few days – and (hopefully) at a better rate.

    The L$ / EUR rates should be easy to come up with as simply a shadow market of the L$ / USD rates.

    Technically, just one EUR account would suffice for all 20 countries which use the euro. Under EU law, banks can’t charge any more for transfers to other EU countries than for in-country transfers. However, it can take a bit longer. Therefore, it may be advantage to have more than one EUR account, e.g. in-country accounts in Germany, France, Italy and Spain.

    The same might apply to GBP and JPY. For the EUR, in any case, it’s a no brainer, as even just one account could cover all 20 countries which use the euro.

    Likewise, you could offer the possibility to pay out L$ to private EUR accounts … although this affects far fewer people.

    Benefits to LL:

    (1) Encourage more Europeans (especially those who don’t have credit cards, or can’t be bothered with PayPal) to put REAL MONEY into SL.

    (2) Less money siphoned off by bank and credit card fees (which does nothing for LL).

    (3) By bringing more real money into LL, this would help stimulate the *entire* SL economy, i.e. benefit not just Europeans.

    (4) Helps with age verification, i.e. if the name of the payer matches the SL-registered name, that’s probably about as effective a form of age verification as credit cards. (I’ve never heard of banks here opening current accounts for kids.)

  112. Hulk Ah says:

    I do not mind more langues, but I’m not sure it will actually attract more people I would like to see in second life. Like we have all noticed, most thieves here come from certain countries that are not great at speaking english. Why help them?

    @8 leliel Mirihi

    They teach english in Japan at a young age? That is really surprising me. about 90% of the japanese i’ve seen have phrases like “no english, sorry”, in their profile

  113. Jonathan Snow says:

    Woolich Ulich Says:
    ….A friend of me… one week trying to get support in her lenguaje (spanish). Nobody in Linden Lab speaks spanish?
    Why don´t you try to improve your support service first?

    That is why I live in Otherland Estate where customer service is in English, Spanisch, German and Dutch. And faster and friendlier then the LL service too 🙂

  114. doP Kidd says:

    The incorporation of new languages in the user interface is surely a good news, but I am sorry to say that the Second Life viewer 1.21.6 (99587) is extremely slow, often freezes and crash a lot, that it is difficult to work normally, actions require two to three times more than before, then that the previous version did not pose all these new problems… :o(

  115. Roman McCullough says:

    While anything that would make people feel more at home in SL, such as better support for languages other than english is very much welcome, it may be premature for LL to make that a priority right now given the problems associated with machine translation.

    With advances in AI, it appears to me that workable translation tools could be available sometime in the next ten years, but the more important immediate issues are the increasing lag and demands on users computers SL makes, asset server stability, the camera not working as it should, copyright protections on in world creations and what to do about traffic numbers in the search engine. Take care of one thing at a time and bring on the frills later.

    You are not going to reach one million daily users, which should be your goal, when you still have so much lag on just 70,000. Really, the ideal is that you could cram 5,000 or more avatars into a single sim with no lag. I hope that happens soon. The longer I am on SL the more I get fed up with the lag and my use is starting to recede as a result.

    I would also urge you to wipe out any accounts that haven’t logged on in the last six months just to reduce asset load. Everyone knows your user numbers are phony anyway, so you might as well make an effort toward giving out truer numbers to reclaim your credibility.

    By the way, the best translation in Japanese I can think of for “sweet!” is “yatta!” “Amai” means sweet like with sugar and it is used colloquially as a word meaning something akin to “pampered.”

  116. EVE MENDES says:

    Criei meu Second Life agora… fiquei simplesmente apaixonada pelo programa! achei tudo sensacional… sou apresentadora de tv, então isso me levou também a ter vontade de divulgar mais o SL na televisão. Pensei em viajar e entrevistar os criadores, pensei em entrevistar vários residentes e players e designers que contribuem no sucesso do programa…

    Bem, hoje lendo um pouco sobre o jogo, descobri que posso ter minha própria casa e uma vida interessante dentro do game… estava eu conhecendo ilhas e olhando casas para comprar e alugar… trava meu MAC e estou editando meu avatar… me aparece um cara chamado (Wabisabi Matahari) e me expulsa de lá me ofendendo, sem explicar absolutarmente nada! Eu tentei conversar com ele em vários idiomas, tentativa frustrada… expliquei q era apresentadora de tv na vida real e q estava ainda aprendendo a mexer em tudo… ele foi simplesmente estupido comigo… falou q não queria saber queme u era… falou umas grosseirias, nao me ouviu, me bloqueou e ainda disse q ia me reportar a Liden… sabe… gostaria eu de compreender… a intenção de moderadores e pessoas q vivem no jogo nao é informar, alertar?! não tratar mal e ofender os outros… achei simplesmente um absurdo… e me senti extremamente ofendida… portanto peço uma explicação plausivel, para q eu possa compreender melhor… e gostaria de saber informaçoes sobre esse: (Wabisabi Matahari) “Owner and Curator Star Trek Museum Complex / Benevolent Dictator of the islands of Tovadok II, Imzadi, Minshara and Eridani.”

    EVE MENDES (ivi Lemon in SL)

  117. @ cherrie jubilee Quote –
    “Why not devide SL into the countries so those who don’t wish to speak in english can play in their own country and speak their home language? ”

    Isnt that called racism? Its a little ” Adolf ” if you dont mind me saying.

    Why not embrace the cultures?

    Look I have had more problems with certain countries stealing textures because its a dog eat dog world in their country and I get skittish when one of them even TPs in I am biting my lip till it bleeds so I dont IM and say ” you arent allowed to resell these textures”
    But I cant! lol Not everyone from that country is a thief.

    Its a political hot potatoe.

  118. Burgess Miles says:

    Yes, I absolutely agree with #118, anything that could bring more people together, make barriers such as language differencies, lower, is a welcome effort, SL is a wonderful wonderful place.

    However, and this is a great big major however, as #118 also points out. Lindens are obviously aiming for volume, as many accounts as possible looks impressive when trying to sell the platform to companies. Numbers that however (again) are so obviously fake that any company being approched must easily see through them. It’s plain naiive to think that anyone at all believes those numbers. The only thing they do is putting a very unnecessary strain on the system, only sensible thing to do would be to erase inactive accounts….and there are many many.
    Linden’s aim for volume – everyone is welcome – is also much contradicted by the constant updates making computers older than say one year useless in handling SL, Lindens then shuts out the vast majority of “normal” users, the volume of residents…
    As #117 points out, the new viewer 1.21 is either not ready for release or only tested by those exclusive few with “super-computers”, I’m on mac with fairly up to date stuff in it (way above lowest recommended oficially stated by Lindens) and I cannot walk normally anymore, my camera is even jerkier than before, I still freeze, I’m (even) more lagged, my typing stil doesn’t work as it should and so on and so on.
    LL needs to concentrate on making SL stable if it wants to be taken seriously, anything else than giving these issues full attention would just show that LL doesn’t really care about their users, the pioneers of this wonderful virtual world.

  119. Sandor Balczo says:

    @119 Eve Mendes:

    I hope you don’t mind my using the English language to communicate, although I do understand Portuguese but do not speak it.

    I know the Star Trek museum sim very well and it has strict rules concerning avatar appearance and behavior which you may read by selecting About Land in the World menu.

    These rules are in English and some of them might sound ridiculous to you, but that is the point of SL. SL has rules: general rules contained in the Terms of Service and the Community Standards, and extra rules in private sims like the one you visited, which is PG if I am not mistaken.

    PG means parental guidance calssification and among the staples of this sim classification are the ban on nudity (total or partial) and the ban on mature behavior and language.

    By way of example, the mere fact that you might have visited the sim in a provocative bathing suit allows the owner of the sim to eject you and ban you, no questions asked and no explanations given. The rules are printed and should be read BEFORE proceeding.

    Would you enter a museum in a bathing suit in Brazil? I don’t think so, you would either not allowed entrance or taken away. Well, if you did that in SL in a PG sim with extra rules, please do not expect to be treated differently.

    Unfortunately, the problem here is that the sensitivity (and sensibility) regarding what is allowed or not allowed in public in Second Life may vary from one country to another. That is why there are general rules and standards we are all supposed to know. And I find it extremely puzzling that the ONLY thing LL should have tranlated in many languages long ago, the community standards, is still in English only.

    Sandor 🙂

  120. Sandor Balczo says:

    I quote myself:

    Would you enter a museum in a bathing suit in Brazil? I don’t think so, you would either not allowed entrance or taken away.

    That should read:

    Would you enter a museum in a bathing suit in Brazil? I don’t think so, you would either not be allowed entrance or be taken away.

    Being unable to edit our blog comments is an incovenience that should be corrected.

  121. Ana Lutetia says:

    So, you have the viewer partially translate to Brazilian Portuguese, why everything I installed a new viewer and enter SL in Portugal (Europe) I have the viewer in Brazilian Portuguese…?

    @119 Eve Mendes:
    Além daquilo que foi dito anteriormente, acrescento que se a Eve estava na terra do avatar, ele tem o direito de a expulsar porque a terra é dele. É ele que paga renda todos os meses e decide quem pode ou não usufruir da terra.

    @122 Sandor Balczo:
    I totally agree that the ToS should be translate to different languages. It is way more important to have the ToS in different languages. Most people that invade my land, even though I have greeter saying it is a personal/residential plot, don’t know that not all land inSL is owned and paid by someone. Most people, when they start inSL, think that all land is for everyone to do whatever they want.

  122. Sandor Balczo says:

    @124 Ana Lutetia:

    Muito obrigado for your agreement with my point and for adding to it. And you are absolutely right.

    I have come to the point that when I meet new Italian-speaking residents in Help Island Public, the first thing I do is handing out my non-official but professional and integral translation of the Community Standards, which are short, simple and smart. My action leads to a series of questions from the newbies that allow me to tell them they should have the same respect for others and their properties in SL as in RL.

    Whenever I do this, English (only)-speaking avatars detect a few English words I use and realize I am trying to educate new residents to be good residents, in a language they are not familiar with.

    That, in itself, improves relationships among international residents at a time when prejudice is sometimes inevitable, due to the wrongdoing of a few uninformed or misinformed “gamers”.

    I so wish other residents who speak Portuguese (or Polish, or Russian, or Greek, or Arabic for that matter) came to Help Island and offered the same service. It takes patience, time, will and knowledge, I know. But sometimes a group of ants are able to move a mountain.

    Sandor 🙂

  123. Ana Lutetia says:

    I guess that is what Mentors are for but unfortunately some of the Mentor I know know less abou the ToS than I do… 😦

  124. TAYLOR1128 says:

    I`m so glad to hear that soon I`m gonna be able to communicate in my own language, that`s great besos para todos….

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