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This is a screenshot of WPML’s menu:

WPML 1.8 menu

A bit scary, isn’t it?

It’s not entirely our fault. WPML adds languages, translation process, theme localization, CMS navigation and Sticky links. You can also get support directly from it.

Lots of functionality…

But, when you think about it, almost everything here is for the web developer building the site. The user only needs to manage translations and maybe add or remove languages. Maybe.

The rest, you use when you configure the site. You don’t expect users to change the language negotiation or enable / disable Sticky links.

Today, WPML includes Basic and Advanced modes. Basic mode includes the more frequent and less technical features in WPML.

When your client is running a complex WordPress site, most chances are you’re using everything WPML has to offer. Your clients, however, don’t need to see all this complexity. They just need to administer content, including translating it.

Developer Vs. User Modes

Developer mode would be like the current Advanced mode. All of WPML’s features and menus are visible.

User mode will be crafted for content admins. We’ll introduce it in WPML 2.0.

In User mode, WPML will include only the Translation Management. This will allow users to translate contents, or send contents to translation services. There would be no clutter, but only features that content admins need.

These features will include:

  • Assigning Translator privileges to users (new in WPML 2.0)
  • Using the Translation Dashboard to send documents to translation (enhanced in WPML 2.0)
  • Viewing the Translation Jobs Queue (yeah, also new in WPML 2.0)
  • Editing translations via the Unified Translation Editor (completely new in WPML 2.0)

The rest of WPML’s features, will only be accessible in Developer mode. Users can easily switch to that mode, but then, they shouldn’t complain about being overwhelmed with options. That’s how it is.

Just WPML?

As I write this post, I realize that we’re not alone. WordPress 3 is a fully featured CMS. Different User and Developer modes would have been useful for WordPress itself, for many themes and for many plugins.

Who knows? maybe someday…

2 Responses to “Developer and User Modes for WPML”

  1. Hi Amir,
    This sounds all very good!
    I am just wondering how the division will be made between the developer and the client?
    What I mean is that most of my clients want to have the admin role, after all it is their website. This could of course be solved by using Justin Tadlock’s Members plugin where you can give different roles to different groups of people.
    So it is important that there is going to be a way within WPML to assign roles to the different parts, ideally also roles that do not necessarily exist standard.
    Or have you solved this already differently?

    • You need to remember that many folks building WordPress sites are less technically savvy than you are.

      There’s a wonderful ecosystem around WordPress today, where graphics designers can use premium themes and put together great sites. They can do it without any deep knowledge of WordPress, let alone PHP or other plugins.

      We’re building this mode for them and for the end users who need a simplified view of WPML to manage their sites.

      So, I prefer to have just one fixed User mode which serves 95% of the cases. The rest can use the Developer mode. As we get closer, we’ll talk about what’s included in the User mode and I’ll be very open to suggestion on how to craft it.