What is Localization Txt and How to Use It for Your Software
Localization txt is a plain text file that contains the language and cultural settings for a software product. It is used to customize the user interface, messages, and other elements of the software according to the preferences of the target audience. Localization txt can help you reach more customers, improve user satisfaction, and comply with local regulations.
In this article, we will explain what localization txt is, how it works, and how to use it for your software. We will also provide some tips and best practices for creating and editing localization txt files.
What is Localization Txt
Localization txt is a file format that stores the localization data for a software product. Localization data is the information that defines the language, culture, and regional settings of a software product. For example, localization data can include:
The text strings that appear in the user interface, such as menus, buttons, labels, dialogs, etc.
The messages that are displayed to the user, such as errors, warnings, notifications, etc.
The date and time formats, number formats, currency symbols, etc.
The images, icons, sounds, colors, fonts, etc. that are used in the software.
Localization txt is a plain text file that can be easily edited in any text editor. It consists of tags and values. A tag is a unique identifier that represents a specific element of the software. A value is the localized content that corresponds to the tag. For example:
WIN_ERROR \"Fatal Error\"
WIN_NO_STEAM \"Steam must be running to play this game.\"
In this example, WIN_ERROR and WIN_NO_STEAM are tags, and \"Fatal Error\" and \"Steam must be running to play this game.\" are values. The tags and values are separated by a space or a tab character.
Localization txt files are usually saved using UTF-8 with BOM unicode encoding[^3^]. This ensures that the file can support any language and character set. The file extension can be .txt or .loc depending on the software.[^4^]
How Does Localization Txt Work
Localization txt works by replacing the default content of the software with the localized content from the file. The software reads the localization txt file at runtime and matches the tags with the corresponding elements of the software. Then, it displays the values instead of the default content.
For example, if you have a game that uses localization txt files for different languages, you can choose the language from a menu or a setting. The game will then load the localization txt file for that language and show the text strings and messages in that language.
Localization txt files can be created manually or automatically using tools and services. Manual creation involves editing the file in a text editor and adding or modifying the tags and values. Automatic creation involves using software or online platforms that can scan the source code of the software and generate localization txt files based on predefined rules and dictionaries.[^5^]
How to Use Localization Txt for Your Software
To use localization txt for your software, you need to follow these steps:
Determine your target markets and languages. You need to know who your potential customers are and what languages they speak. This will help you decide which languages to support and prioritize.
Create or obtain a default localization txt file. You need to have a base file that contains all the tags and values for your software in your source language. You can create this file yourself or use an existing one from your software vendor or developer.
Translate or localize the values for each language. You need to have a localization txt file for each language that you want to support. You can translate or localize the values yourself or hire professional translators or localization experts. You need to make sure that the translations are accurate, consistent, and culturally appropriate.
Test and validate your localization txt files. You need to check your localization txt files for errors, typos, formatting issues, missing tags or values, etc. You also need to test your software with each localization txt file and verify that everything works as expected.