Kind of urgent! Regarding translation of the app interface and common names

First of all, sorry for already spamming this forum with posts about translations (something majority of users here understandably don’t find very relevant). :D I understand that there are far more pressing issues than translating the app into a language just a bunch of users speak. But in just a few weeks me and some other people from our Lithuanian community are speaking about iNat at the event for nature lovers. We want to have the app and majority of taxa translated into Lithuanian by then. It’s quite important to us because this will help us attract even more active users (including children and older people who don’t speak English).
We are very excited to translate everything ourselves but there are many questions we need answered before we invest all that time into it.
First of all, is it even possible to accomplish? I mean, we can translate the app on Crowdin in just a few days, but when will this translation be available for the users? Will the translation be uploaded to the app instantly once it is approved or do we need to wait for the app update and the translation will come attached to it?
And speaking of approval, I can’t figure out how that works. So I wrote a letter asking to be a Crowdin reviewer (just like in the tutorial), I got the response that “it looks like I’ve been made a translator”. I don’t see any changes or additional options, except that it appears that someone approved half of the translations that I made. I don’t understand what happened there or how to get the rest of the translations approved.
Also, do we need to translate 100% of the files for the translation to be available for the public or can we leave some out for the time being and finish later (there are some lines that are quite tricky to translate yet majority of users never see them)?
Also, can we go back and fix some of the lines after they were made public?
And finally, the giant list of Lithuanian common names I uploaded in an earlier post. I really want to know when it will be uploaded to iNat. I don’t want to put pressure on anyone, maybe it’s a tricky and time consuming job, it’s just that I want to know if it’s even gonna work or if I’m better off just recruiting people from our community to translate the most common species manually.
Sorry for such a long post and for bothering you once again about the same subject. But it is quite urgent, because tomorrow I’m meeting some other users to plan that iNaturalist tutorial speach and I really need to know all the answers to these questions by then.


I thought one can change common names itself on the Taxon page and then it will be immediately published. I think it is better to use complete standrd lists with source information but for the Benelux since 1995 everybody is using the same source in the Benelux so it is better to use (parts of this list) that list than everybody is adding manual some species of uncertain origin.

But i have a list of Dutch names which, I hope, can imported together with the Luthian names. (But my original download (Import into iNaturalist) already included Dutch names)

I thought the translation should be 80%

Most of this needs to be answered by an iNat staff member, but translations are ‘turned on’ when I believe they are 75% complete, you don’t need to be 100% done.

I’m not sure if this means 75% in the mobile app and 75% in the web app (they are 2 separate translation processes), or when 1 gets there they implement it. I’m also unsure after that how often updates are pushed through once it is turned on.

Translation definitely matters to us, but we’re a small team and it’s one of many things we need to deal with in mobile app development. Our Android app and iPhone app also follow different development schedules due to the varied responsibilities of the people who work on them, so some of these questions will have two answers for each app.

We integrate crowdin translations into the Android code base once a month (usually at the beginning of the month), but we only release new version of the app when we’re confident that the current build is stable, so that’s not on a set schedule. We might do 3 releases in a month, or we might not release for over a month because we keep finding bugs that we don’t want to unleash on you all.

The iPhone app is even less scheduled, due to the fact that Alex divides his time between that and work on our computer vision system, so it’s hard to say when translations will get released. We get to them when we have time.

You will need to wait for the app update.

I’m pretty sure I approved your contributions to the Android strings, which I do as a part of the monthly integration, and that the iPhone ones are just awaiting a look from Alex. My general process is to run a few of a user’s translations through Google Translate to make sure they’re not spam or way off base, and if that spot check seems ok, I’m mostly just checking to make sure none of the translations have formatting problems (missing variables, additional variables, HTML problems, etc.).

Re: being a proofreader, you’ve added a bunch and you have a ton of iNat obs, so I’ll make you a proofreader for Lithuanian.

You don’t need to translate 100%. The only translation files we don’t include are the ones that are 0% translated. It’s different on translatewiki.

Sure. You just need to add a new translation and then it will need to get approved (or approve it yourself, since you’re now a Lithuanian proofreader).

If you’re referring to this post, I actually wouldn’t incorporate these names because they have no source. I guess the file itself could be considered a source, but it seems like it will disappear in 21 days so it’s not very stable. When I add common names en masse, I generally want a URL that will tell me where the names came from and who was responsible, even if that’s just an individual. Maybe you could upload them to Google Sheets or something. That would represent a more stable source. IMO, that’s a topic for another thread, since common names are separate from translations.

Re: urgency, we work on our own schedule, so we can’t guarantee that anything will happen at any given time. I realize that’s not very satisfying for you, but that’s how things are.


Thank you for clearing some things up. It’s late so I’ll need to re-read your post in the morning.
One thing that I can say already is about the common name problem. I was refering to my dofferent post that I made on the same thread 4 days ago (it starts with me saying “Wow, it’s insane” or something along those lines). I did make a google spreadsheat for it. The source is wikipedia I suppose. :/ Other users explain how it works on that thread.

Just to clarify, as I am the one who actually extracted the data, it came from Wikidata, not Wikipedia. Within the file, a high percentage of the species included are birds, which in turn were sourced into Wikidata from the IOC World Bird Checklist which is a highly reputable and trustworthy source.


But iNaturalist itself is not using following this IOC World Bird Checklist ?

Added: I ask this because IOC has 20 languages incorporated and is multilangual
(And Clements is from American Bird Societiy)

For taxonomy, iNat follows the Clements checklist. No checklist or source is officially followed for common names (in any family, not just birds)…

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@ahospers - I see you updated your question. it does not matter where the checklist is based (Europe vs. US) or how many languages it contains etc, because as I noted, the site does not align to any checklist for common names. This is the case not just for birds, but all families of life.

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You mean the site iNaturalist does not align to any list (for common names) ? I am a bit surprised because now you are in a huge grey area and for common names i read that IOC has 20 languages…I would just stick to published lists(electronic or on paper).

Further i should choose a kind of synoniem for example for different ways of writing (SintJanskruid, Sint-Janskruid, Sint Janskruid) …you can search for a kind of name but it will convert rather quickly in the preferred name. But maybe i am thinking to easy about it…

Common names always have been, and always will be, a huge grey area.

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Maybe some languages are an exeception on this rule?

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Maybe so, and they would be “exceptions that prove the rule” in the bigger picture, in my personal opinion :wink:

For a large import, we would like to know where the names originated, as @kueda explained. But I agree with @jdmore that common names are kind of always a gray area. I’m not convinced that continual debate about them will fix the inherent problem that lots of people call the same organism a different name.

It is not really a gray area when it comes to Lithuanian common names. Only 3 million people are using this language and only in a small country. There aren’t that many different names for one taxon and there’s almost always an official one that everyone agrees on. I assure you that this (updated) list from wikidata is mostly (or perhaps entirely) correct:
This list isn’t great, because 90% of the names are of foreign birds, but I can’t find anything better so it’s either this or nothing. Again, I don’t know where Wikidata gets the data from, so I can’t present any sources, but I’ll never find another huge list of names with a more reliable source online. The only alternative is writing the list manually using published guides. This would take forever. I think it’s better to just have this list with a couple of mistakes that we could fix later.

Thanks @tomasp for getting us back on topic! This seems like just the sort of sourced (to Wikidata and your google doc) large import that @tiwane was referring to. And like you say, it’s the best available for Lithuanian, so I don’t see any reason it shouldn’t be used.

Wikidata data is entirely loaded by volunteers, and is supposed to be referenced when it is loaded. The bird names in that file in turn come from the IOC world bird list which is highly reputable. If other similar lists can be found, they too can be loaded, but the chances of you finding such a list is likely much higher than me doing so.

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