This is one post in a series, describing challenges we need to overcome to make free software ubiquitous on the desktop.
There are 347 languages with more than a million speakers. But even Ubuntu, which has amazing infrastructure for translation and a great community that actually does the work, is nowhere close to being fully translated in more than 10 or 15 languages.
You can see a great chart of this in the Edgy Translation Status page.
Translation is one of the key opportunities we have to create something radically better than what the Windows hegemony has yet been able to deliver. Something that will give millions – tens or hundreds of millions – of new computer users a reason to stick with free software.
If you want to make a difference, and you are not a native English speaker but nonetheless have good English and are a regular users of Ubuntu or the free software stack, please help! It’s dead easy to contribute with Rosetta in Launchpad, and you can translate many upstreams or add translations for your home language straight to Ubuntu – we ship out a new language pack at least once a month.
Our goal is straightforward – build a huge, well managed community to translate free software into hundreds of languages with a high level of accuracy, then make those translations instantly and freely available. It’s like wikipedia for your desktop.