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Language Conventions

Dominik Schürmann edited this page Apr 20, 2016 · 51 revisions

Help us translating at OpenKeychain on Transifex.
Translations are managed and coordinated by the Localization Lab.

Respect the following...

  • Sometimes the translations of Enigmail can help:
  • On Transifex, please do not subdivide languages into regions, e.g. don't specify Italian (Italy), instead please only specify Italian.
  • Exceptions:
    • "zh": Allow "zh" and "zh_TW" on Transifex ( See and )
    • "es": Allow "es" and "es_MX" on Transifex (Info by Israel Buitrón: Mexican spanish is very singular, here (in Mexico) some words about cryptography a little bit different, I have met people from southamerica and they use other words to translate to spanish. For example, "key" can be translated to "llave" in latinamerica, but in Mexico, here must be "clave", a send example is "encrypt", "encriptar", "cifrar" (from english, in Latinamerica and in Mexico, respectively))
    • "pt_BR"
  • certain language codes sometimes have different names in Android, so there should be identical copies for each of these language locales:
    • he and iw
    • id and in
    • yi and ji
  • for a language+country locale (e.g. zh_HK, es_MX), convert the _ (underscore) to a -r (dash and lowercase R) and add that to the end of values- (e.g. values-zh-rHK, values-es-rMX)


  • Always surround with quotes to prevent escaping problems: <string name="test">"text"</string>
  • Dont use &lt;, &gt;, <, or > directly! Use CDATA: <string name="user_id_none"><![CDATA[<none>]]></string>


English terminology


OpenPGP is the open standard, PGP is a program developed by Phil Zimmermann, GPG is a program developed primarily by Werner Koch. Wikipedia clearly differentiates between the program and the standard.

OpenKeychain terminology

We try to provide a better terminology when we think that the traditional one is flawed:

Traditional/technical phrase Replacement in OpenKeychain Comment
User ID Identity
Key ID - Don't mention key IDs, they serve no purpose
Passphrase Password People don't know what a passphrase is, but they know passwords. Renaming passwords to passphrases doesn't help to increase their strength.
Public/private key Key Don't try to explain the concept of public key cryptography. People don't want to know it, it should work seamlessly
Sign/Certify key Confirm key Key signing makes no sense without knowing public key crypto. Certify is more appropriate, but also difficult to understand.
Cache password Remember password Cache is technical language
Smartcard Security Token Smartcard does not fit for YubiKeys

German terminology

Im Allgemeinen steht das Verb hier hinten und das Objekt vorne!

English German Comment
Confirm key Schlüssel bestätigen
Remember password Passwort merken "zwischengespeichert" klingt für normale Menschen danach als würde es gespeichert werden. Es wird aber nur kurzzeitig "gemerkt"
verify verifizieren Wir haben über "überprüfen" nachgedacht, aber in diesem Kontext ist mir das zu lasch. "überprüfen" beinhaltet für mich nicht, dass überprüft wird wer der Author der Nachricht ist, "verifizieren" schon eher.
sign signieren "unterschreiben" ist mir auch zu lasch
Backup Backup Heutzutage wissen die Leute was ein Backup ist. Das Wort "Sicherung" ist eher verwirrend.

OpenPGP terminology (not necessarily used)

  • "keyserver" not "key server", HKP Draft
  • "sign" texts and files, but "certify" keys, RFC4880
  • "passphrase" not "pass phrase", RFC4880
  • ASCII "Armor" not "Armour", RFC4880