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I'm using RoboHelp 11 to generate WebHelp that includes a ToC, glossary, index, and page-level context-sensitive help.
We currently offer it in English only, but there is a new requirement to provide it in 4 or 5 different languages (all supported by RoboHelp 11).
The software team is asking whether we can display the different help sets (French, Japanese, etc.) based on the browser's language settings or something passed to it by our web application.
The specific questions are:
Can RoboHelp automatically determine the language from browser settings?
Or can RoboHelp accept arbitrary parameters in the URL and analyze them?
Or maybe RoboHelp already has a built-in mechanism to accept a call with a URL which contains a predefined param for defining the language
To my knowledge, there is absolutely nothing in RoboHelp that will assist in determining the language and taking action on it.
RoboHelp certainly allows you to choose a language during the authoring process and output with different settings for different languages, but as far as I'm aware, that's where it ends.
If you want this "On The Fly" bit, you could create a massive help system with all languages consolidated into a single project, then employ the Content Categories feature to allow the end user to select the language of choice.
As far as self-determining the language based on Browser settings or creating Context-Sensitive Calls, that may be possible but would certainly require some custom coding totally outside the realm of RoboHelp to achieve.
Hopefully others will offer better info on this... Rick
Thanks a lot Captiv8r! Hopefully others will chime in.
Content Categories? That will be an interesting project...
What I normally advise for lots of languages or a lot of projects, is to create a custom landing page. You send users to this file with all the parameters required: topic ID, required manual, language, etc.
This file will process the parameters and any browser settings you might need. Based on that, it redirects to the correct help system.
For RoboHelp, you will just be publishing a lot of different outputs and languages. The landing page will do all the heavy lifting. And you can change the backend without any impact to the landing page.
LOL Based on Willam's reaction, it would appear the thought experiment on using the Content Categories feature is rather insane.
Apologies for suggesting that. Hopefully he will advise more as to why that would be an awful choice.
I mean, I personally see where it could be a real challenge just to maintain such a project, and maybe that's what he was meaning, but that's the closest thing that came to mind as far as a dynamic and "on the fly" sort of affair being asked about.
Ha ha. I am just imagining it now Rick. I have several clients that translate to over 20 languages. Normally, I just advice to create copies of the English project (or other main language) and let the translation agency send back translated projects 🙂
Multiple languages are, technically, possible in a single project. But you normally have the same content everywhere. So that means you'll be organising all languages in several folder structures, one for each language. And every language will have it's own TOC, Index, etc. Starts to sound like different projects 🙂
The hard part for one project is that you need to provide only your main language to the translators. The translated files will have to be added to the correct location in the projects. I generally think it's much easier to simply send the whole English project and let the translation memory create a translated version.
The only problem is the redirect. You don't want to add that logic in every project. So a simple HTML file that checks some variables and redirects, is a very low key solution.
LOL, note that I never claimed it was a GOOD solution. It was simply the only solution that came to mind when the request was to have RoboHelp manage it and from a "dynamic" perspective.
Thanks guys! I'll propose WvanW's solution to the dev guy and see what he says. Thanks!