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Internationalizing Those Bash Scripts

Sep 27, 2010, 16:34 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Louis Iacona)

"The first software that I was actually paid to develop was a 2-page shell script that prompted the user for a dozen or so pieces of information, before launching a set of cooperating processes. Those processes formed the core of a performance evaluation suite for the public telephone network - a rather sizable system for its day with high visibility.

"Thinking through that assignment and the greater application, I can say with complete certainty that none of its stakeholders were contemplating [human] language independence - that is, how to render prompts, error messages, progress diagnostics, etc. in a language other than US-English. Even if we had been thinking that progressively, the level of facilitation provided by development languages/platforms was either very limited or non-existent.

"Fast forward to 2010, language independence - or Internationalization as it has come to be known - is something that is now expected of commercial grade software."

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