Internationalization is the word of the day. I’ve been reading up on
locale support and it’s actually it a very interesting topic. The point
behind locale support, is that regardless of what language, and country
you’re in there will be a system in place to customize everything for
your locale. In this case it means that the webpage you’re viewing will
be customized to your location. Sounds easy right? Well it’s not.
Think about all the custom data that needs to be formated for a moment.
For starters all text has to be translated into multiple languages –
that’s the obvious one. Dates and times need to be converted. Some
countries use month/day/year, some day/month/year, etc; and that’s just
one type of date formatting. Another problem comes with time zones.
Storing time zones for every user/location (or offset from GMT) is
extremly annoying when the users won’t be setting them themselves.
Pulling the users time based on their IP, browser or other ways is nice
and all, but not secure enough. But then how do you handle day light
savings time which is not observed by every state and not every country
of course. The real confusion comes with the gregorian calendar – the
whole 2004, so many days per month thing. It’s not 2004 everywhere, as
weird as that sounds. There are countless other problems like how zip
codes aren’t used everywhere, phone number differences, different number
of fields for names (some places have just 1 name), measurements
(meters, feet, etc) and other stuff. The one part that I have absolutely
no clue how to do is how some countries read left to right, some right
to left. WTH? I wonder if that’s reversible in a stylesheet. I’m just
glad I find this stuff interesting because I’ll be working on it for the
next 3 months.

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I'm , a full-stack product developer in Salt Lake City, UT. I love enlivening experiences, visualizing data, and making playful websites.

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