User language settings

RDB Richard D. Bartlett Public Seen by 75

We need to design the language setting feature. Some things to consider:

  • presumably the browser will identify the user's preferred language, but there also needs to be the option to override this setting, e.g. a dropdown in the header as Rafael suggests:
  • it may be useful to have a per-group default language. E.g. if a Spanish-speaking admin sets up a group and then invites 100 people, it would be nice if all those users have their language pre-selected to Spanish, so they receive emails in their mother tongue from the outset.
  • should we have a 'change my language' link in the bottom of every email the way we have 'change my email settings'?
  • what else do we need to consider?

Jon Lemmon Sun 14 Apr 2013 3:22AM

I'd be inclined to keep the drop-down out of the header and in the user settings page.

@richarddbartlett You raise a really good point about what the default language is that gets sent in the invite email to the other users of the group. Perhaps that's enough to change my mind about having an editable invite message in the invitation process. =)


Richard D. Bartlett Sun 14 Apr 2013 3:46AM

@jonlemmon I was thinking if I were viewing Loomio in a foreign language I would want to find the language dropdown somewhere very obvious. Maybe if we replace the word "English" with a little flag icon?


Jon Lemmon Sun 14 Apr 2013 4:41AM

@richarddbartlett ah yeah... duh (can't believe I didn't consider that).

Another option might be a flash message of some sort the first time you visit the site? Would be cool to mock up a few different designs...


Rafael Gomes Sun 14 Apr 2013 4:49AM

Great! :D


Rafael Gomes Sun 14 Apr 2013 4:57AM

@jonlemmon some users* can have problems to change language in the user settings page.

I know that it can be solved with a good documentation or that options to change automatically.

  • In Brazil we need use Loomio to provide a way to take politics decisions in Pirata Party, in that case we will have all type of users.

Richard D. Bartlett Tue 16 Apr 2013 6:06AM

I spent all day yesterday researching internationalisation and localisation, and exploring some of the various options we could take. I developed a few alternatives and at the end of the day chucked everything out and changed direction. Here's what I'm thinking now:

Limit the scope of this feature to logged-in users only (logged out users are quite a different case that we can develop secondarily).

I'm thinking we add a language dropdown at the very start of the new group wizard. Here's a pretty unexciting mockup.

The default setting of this dropdown will be informed by the language preferences reported by the user's browser. If the user changes this dropdown, the page should reload immediately with the new language.

The group creator's language choice will be used as the default for all users invited to that group (membership invites will be delivered in that language).

When the new user comes to set up their account, there will be a language dropdown where they can override this default.

If they want to change this selection later, this can be overridden on the user settings page.

This way we don't have to use up any screen space for a feature that each user is likely to use at most once.

What do you think @jonlemmon @robertguthrie?


Rafael Gomes Tue 16 Apr 2013 12:36PM

@richarddbartlett I like this way. :)


Aaron Thornton Tue 16 Apr 2013 8:20PM

@richarddbartlett, I wonder if setting it at a group level is the best option. If I was traveling to Japan say and there were Loomio communities discussing ideas I wanted to join in on I would want my view of the app in English. Maybe just an edge case, but maximum flexibility is probably the best answer with accessibility.


Richard D. Bartlett Tue 16 Apr 2013 8:38PM

@aaronthornton I'm suggesting we set it at a user level, with defaults informed by the group creator.


Aaron Thornton Tue 16 Apr 2013 9:11PM

Gotcha, like it! Sorry only got as far as the mock up. My bad


Aaron Thornton Tue 16 Apr 2013 9:33PM

@richarddbartlett, Any reason we dont just the browser setting the default for the user, which they can override like you suggested at sign in and on the settings page. Do we need to have the admin step?


Richard D. Bartlett Wed 17 Apr 2013 1:19AM

@aaronthornton because we need to know what language to send the invite email in, which needs to be decided before the user first visits the app and their browser supplies their preferences.

Also the articles I read suggest that the browser settings can be a little bit patchy so you want to provide a way to override it.