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138

Option 2 is the best option, because you'll recognize your own language regardless of your knowledge of other languages (be sure to also provide charactersets if you support for example japanese) Problems with options 1 and 3 Option 1. If you don't speak / understand the current language you may not recognize your own language. In the example germans would ...


94

Option 2 is the way to go as you should always show languages listed by the way they are written in that language. It is the way both Wikipedia and most companies that deal in many languages do it. Here is how Apple handle it: Problems with the other options Option 1 is a headache to maintain as you need to have the name of every language in every other ...


23

The mental image of time is indeed thought to be influenced by language and culture. Scientists discovered years ago that spatial representations of time are affected greatly by linguistic conventions. If English is your native tongue, you're likely to think of time as moving from left to right, but if Arabic is your language of choice, time moves ...


21

Option 2 is the best, since user can always recognize its own language. There's is a small pitfall though. If you present language selector as dropdown, user won't see any values except current auto-detected language, unless he clicks it. And if user doesn't understand currently selected language - say, already mentioned Chinese, he might won't even notice ...


18

The short answer is no, don't use country flags. http://www.456bereastreet.com/archive/200604/indicating_language_choice_flags_text_both_neither/ The preferred method is to use the name of the language in the language itself (and watch out for diacriticals, language specific capitalization, etc).


16

If you're going to bother localizing your interface, you might as well do it fully and respect the language or region's common practices. As you mention localization, I assume this means that you will change the placement of the currency symbol based on the locale setting of the user's interface, rather than the locale of the currency symbol used. Take ...


16

People can reach non-front-pages of your website by many means, so you should have some indication on every page that it is possible to switch languages. If the clean design is that important that you don't want the complete language switching widget on every page you should at least provide an obvious link to the page (or pop up) that enables language ...


15

The problems with this approach are: You're choosing languages to demonstrate this that have an arguably stronger association with specific countries, so the solution seems better than it is. You are also assuming that everyone that speaks Spanish knows what the Spanish flag looks like, which is not necessarily true. Someone from Nicaragua doesn't have ...


13

Isn't this also a question about granularity? Choose the highest common factor that adds or differentiates value in your service. For example - does a service actually differentiate between users from Scotland and users from England. If yes, include both. If no, stick to the United Kingdom as in Katie's linked list. If there is no differentiation between ...


13

Source - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decimal_mark In Albania, Belgium, Bosnia, Estonia, France, Finland, Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and much of Latin Europe as well as French Canada: 1 234 567,89 (In Spain, in handwriting it is also common to use an upper comma: 1.234.567'89) In Brazil, Germany, Netherlands, Denmark, Italy, ...


13

Disclaimer: I am not a native speaker of a language which does use guillemets as a way to denote quotes. But I wanted to offer a view on how context can help identify if the content being referenced is a phrase or a case of pagination I believe there are two aspects to it I believe this is one of those cases where users can visualize whether a phrase ...


12

My thoughts: In Switzerland, where multi-language websites are very common, the normal thing is to use the two letter language codes (DE, FR, EN, IT etc.) or - if there is enough space - use the full name (i.e. Deutsch, Français, English etc.). But I think key for a good experience is how the language detection is handled. IMO it should work like this: ...


11

As a UX analyst for multinational companies in the Arab world (where we have designed the same sites with an English version and an Arabic version) the UI elements are pretty much the same. There is no difference between using a drop-down combo box here or there or whether radio buttons work somewhere but don't work for others. We have noticed however that ...


9

Choose a standard and stick by it. Here is a link to the International Standards Organisation country names and codes. http://www.iso.org/iso/country_codes/iso_3166_code_lists/country_names_and_code_elements.htm


9

To expand on: You're challenging national identities. If someone is from Austria, they need to choose a German flag. While that may not be a big deal to you, to many Austrians it is. Germany vs. Austria or US vs. GB are relatively harmless examples. I assume in most cases you'd get mild annoyance from the side you didn't choose. But for other countries ...


8

Great idea - I love the notion of providing per-country address forms and save users from having to put up with a convention that does not apply to them. I agree that it's somewhat uncommon to have the country field that early in an address form - but what about asking the user which country they're from before even starting the address form interaction, ...


8

There are some politically correct suggestions that we use ISO 639.1 language codes, but the reality is that to most people they mean very little. They are an engineering solution, not a UX solution. If you go with country flags, there are some people that will not like the fact that you showed a US flag for English rather than for Navajo. The same way ...


8

Generally, the official flag is an accepted representation of the country (not language as OP mentions) because each country has only 1 current civilian flag. However, there could also be separate flags for the navy, for the head of state, the military, and other special purposes. The official flag shouldn't create any controversies or misunderstandings. ...


8

In the Arabic world, time series charts are more often shown as right-to-left, as this flows more naturally with reading from right-to-left. Al Jazeera (a large Arabic based news organisation) for example user right-to-left charts quite regularly, as shown below. Note that I have no idea what this chart is referring to. However, most speakers of ...


7

I am sure this has been asked before, but I cannot find it. Anyhow, there are a few of rules generally to apply to this sort of thing. Do not confuse currencies with countries. It gets very complex. They are NOT the same, even though many countries and currencies do match one-to-one. Do not use IP lookup to guess users location. This worked for a while, ...


7

Mnemonics don't translate well and retaining their mnemonic nature. However, that isn't a critical issue. For example, the common ctrl(or command) + X, C, V, A, W, Q are the standard shortcut in many languages even when they have no associated mnemonic. Even in English many common shortcuts have no mnemonic link. Consistency is significantly more ...


7

@robram gave a great talk (video) recently about how he designed the Age UK website. It's ostensibly content strategy, but really ends up being a useful list of how to create online content for older adults. He presents some statistics, such as that over-55s now make up 20% of the online demographic — while these are representative of the UK, not Japan, I ...


7

thanks for Chris for her bigging up of my talk... Echoing what she said, it's important to make both buttons and fonts big and clear, both for visually-impaired people, as well as those have slight motor control issues, too. The main thing, though, is to be as simple as possible. Never assume that a design feature is 'well-known' or that a heading's ...


7

People in general are inattentive to what fonts brands use. And remember that for years all we had when we were building web site was just a few web fonts to choose from and all we could do was to choose the most similar one. So, I would just choose a similar font and make sure that the rest of the site follows the brand guidelines. Perhaps there is one or ...


7

There are very few advantages to using all caps, and that is why we usually don't. When we read text, largely what our brains are doing is recognizing the overall shape of words, rather than the individual letters. Lowercase letters have different sizes and visual densities; some have ascenders sticking up, or descenders sticking down. This means that ...


7

Unless you have an extremely homogenous audience, trying to validate a phone number is generally a bad idea. Phone numbers around the world are quite different, and even in the same area, there are a number of valid phone numbers. For example, in the Netherlands a typical mobile phone number may be given as: 0623456789. Here are the valid ways that I've ...


6

While I agree with @jbreckmckye to ask for the country, not the country's telephone number as that can be inferred from the country, I do think that most people know the telephone number of their country and can spit it out at will. That said, I would not split the telephone number in separate fields at all. I would ask for the for the country in a ...


6

Be aware that you're going to run into fun and games with the 'dropped' first zero issue. Eg the correct format for London England is +44 20 X XXX XXXX However if you just ask for the country and the number you'll get people completing it as England, 020 X XXX XXXX


6

Yes, especially if you have a mix of international users filling out the form. We in the U.S. sometimes forget others need to use our forms. I think the way you have it makes the most sense because each field relies on the next. (i.e. If they live outside the US they will not be in a state.)



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