Ian Ward

CKAN contributor/tech lead
Urwid author
PyRF contributor
Speedometer author

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My (Canada) Food Guide

Posted on 2007-07-29, last modified 2008-05-14.

This past week I had the pleasure of working with Shauna Deamond and Jaber Maycid from Langu-edge Solutions Inc. on the “My Food Guide” feature on the Canada's Food Guide web site.

Jaber was unable to add many of the 11 languages that will be supported because the PDF-generating library that they had chosen does not support Unicode. I was able to help convert their PHP code from using FPDF library to TCPDF. The API of each library is quite different, and there were some minor problems I ran into with TCPDF, but the conversion was completed in just a few days. I will be submitting patches to TCPDF that fix the problems I encountered.

In the short time I was working on this project I learned about many issues that come up in translation and localization of a project. I also learned more about Arabic text and character shaping engines.

The new language versions of “My Food Guide” will be great for immigrants to Canada that have family at home with limited understanding of French or English. It should be available from Canada's Food Guide web site in a couple weeks.

Tags: PHP