Right now if you install a Drupal 7/8 site, your language detection and selection configuration will be "empty". Basically all you have enabled is fallback on your site default language. We discussed this experience a lot today at the Montreal multilingual sprint, and came up with a few suggestions.

  • Make URL language negotiation with path enabled by default. This is very frustrating at the start, because people add languages, but they don't work until you check this checkbox here.
  • Hide domain settings from languages if they will never be used (or vice versa for paths, if you have domain negotiation configured).
  • Cross-link the language configuration UI with the negotiation configuration screen for URLs, so you know where to configure how the data is used and vice versa.
  • Possibly include a link on the language list to "this language", ie. if your selection method is paths, then we'd link to http://example.com/de for German (replacing it with your domain obviously). We discussed this would be great for an informational perspective, howrever if you don't have path/domain negotiation, there is no single link we can put here + if you have anything more complex, the link might not work (session, browser, etc. might override it).

I hope I collected our feedback well. Here are some screenshots to support what we observed.

On the language list:

On the negotiation setup screen:

On the specific URL negotiation setup screen:

On editing a language:


webchick’s picture

In general, +1 to the concept of doing something by default so that Drupal's multilingual support doesn't appear completely busted by default. :P

However, what I would love is a bit of research first into what best practices are for websites providing multilingual content these days. Defaults matter. It probably is indeed a URL path prefix type of deal, but let's just confirm it with some checking around of what other folks are doing.

webchick’s picture

Oh, wait, this was also the issue about the language overview page. Some feedback on that as well.

In general I would say putting "Language versions" links on the overview page is not great, because it REALLY draws your attention to it, and it's also a bunk column for sites that are not using URL-based language negotiation. In that case, the screen will look different from one Drupal site to another, which is confusing.

The text fields for the URL configuration settings I would actually move under the negotiation screen. Perhaps it makes sense to duplicate that table again there, only this time have it focused purely on configuration of the negotiation settings? Not sure. But coupling them together on the overview page feels a bit odd to me.

webchick’s picture

More feedback. I think on this issue, since I can't find the mockup I was shown in any of the other issues I checked, but I also don't see it here. Hm.

I was shown a version of the language overview screen with columns:

= Name
= Link (to English/Dutch/whatever version of site)
= Translation status (XX%)
= Operations
(maybe some other stuff)

Then at the bottom of the table a list of languages with an "Add" button. Feedback on that mock (feel free to point me to where the proper place to leave a comment is, if this isn't it.)

1. As mentioned above, I would remove the "Link" field, since it's very visually loud, and confusing on sites that are not using URL path negotiation.
2. In addition to Translation status of the user interface, it could also be useful to have a "Content translation" status XX%, though we discussed that calculating that could be difficult.
3. Since there are sometimes reasons to add a custom language, the interface should go:

[ -- select a language -- v ] [ Add ] or <a href="#">add a custom language</a>

...or something like that.

4. I would also remove the "Add" link at the top, since it's confusing to have it in two places. (reference the Roles page)

Feel free to override any of these opinions based on people who actually do multilingual sites though. :)

Gábor Hojtsy’s picture

Title: Smarter defaults and UI fixes for language selection » META: smarter defaults and UI fixes for language selection

@webchick: moving the links and URL and domain settings to the negotiation screen itself is at #1280530: Decouple domain/path negotiation setup from language configuration. Your feedback there would be great. The language list with the add/add custom functionality is at #1260860: Rework language list admin user interface. I know its confusing, I'm retitling this issue META :)

Gábor Hojtsy’s picture

Status: Active » Closed (duplicate)
Issue tags: -Usability, -D8MI +ui-text usability, +D8MI-meta

Dismantling meta issues to clean up the D8MI issue list. (Working on a better overview for the issues).