[OpenLayers-Dev] Getting Help and Foreign Language Support

Christopher Schmidt crschmidt at metacarta.com
Sun Nov 16 13:06:26 EST 2008

So, after my recent trip to Japan, I realized we don't really have a
particularly good "Here's where to get help" starting page. I put
together http://trac.openlayers.org/wiki/GettingHelp , and then added 

Essentially, a quick summary is:
 * The lists are primarily English
 * Try to translate your question, but include the original text if yu 
   don't trust your translation skills -- we have some foreign language
   speakers on the list.
 * If you are interested in a foreign langauge list for OL, add yourself
   to a wikipage and we may make one if there's enough interest.
 * Here are some resources in foreign langauges.

I'm hopeful that we can get this translated into as many languages as
possible by various members of the OSGeo community, so that if we get a
question in a foreign language -- especially one that members of the
Mailing list don't speak -- we have a single wikipage to try to point
people to.

Also, these pages can point to other langauge-specific resources
(Documentation, etc.) that we can encourage people to use.

Any thoughts on this particular implementatin? I know we have French,
German, and Spanish speakers on the list who might be willing to
translate the page for us if we decide that this is a sane way to get
started :)

One of the things I realized when I was in Japan is that it's very
difficult to find *anything* about OpenLayers due to the nature of
Google indexing there. Specifically, pages which are English tend to be
almost impossible to find, because everything is so heavily weighted
towards Japanese. Example searches:


So, in Japan, you get:
 * OpenLayers website. Good.
 * OpenLayers QuickTutorial on how t use OL with *iframes*. Bad.
 * Blog entries, random minor URLs.

No docs, no wiki, no how to get started. (Though I do see that
http://mapabc.wikidot.com/openlayers:menu appears to be a Japanese
translation of our API docs? It's not clear if this is automated or
manual... but I'm impressed, in either case. An example of "resources
listed on the ForeignLanguageSupport/ja page"... )  

By comparison, in English, you get:
 * Website
 * Blog
 * Wikipedia article
 * Nabble Forum
 * API docs link

before it heads into various blog entries, etc.

Neither of these is particularly great, I suppose, but I think that
getting a "Here, start here" for foreign languages might help draw more
people to the OpenLayers community who currently feel a bit lost or left
out on how to get started.


Christopher Schmidt

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