Thursday, July 12, 2012

Finding Wikipedia in your language

Since yesterday, the www.wikipedia.org portal has a new feature. In addition to the long list of language names linking to the Wikipedia in that language, there is an inputbox right above it where you can enter a language name and it will redirect you to that Wikipedia. It accepts the native name (autonym), name in English, in your browser language and the language code. For example, you can enter "fran├žais", "French", "Frans" or "fr" and it will bring you to fr.wikipedia.org.

In case no Wikipedia exists (yet) in that language, it will go to the Wikimedia Incubator test wiki if that is started yet, and else it will show the "info page" inviting you to start that test wiki. For example, entering "Brahui" brings you to the Brahui Wikipedia and entering "Bini" brings you to the relevant info page.

This is still an early version:
  • The language names coverage and the search itself will improve in the (near) future, and the Universal Language Selector might be used in the longer term for easier usage.
  • The label "Find Wikipedia in language" is also only in English since there is no obvious language-neutral icon to use. A solution could be to add a translation of the label based on the browser language.
  • It can probably be added to the other portals as well (i.e. for Wikibooks, Wikinews, ...).
Update: it did not display properly on small screens (mobile phones), it is now (temporarily) hidden there.

Any comments, ideas, problems are welcome,
Thanks,
Robin (SPQRobin)