i69n 0.2.0
i69n: ^0.2.0 copied to clipboard

Simple internationalization tool for Dart and Flutter, based on YAML files and source generation.

Simple internationalization package for Dart and Flutter.

Overview #

Write your messages into YAML files, and let this package generate convenient Dart classes from those files.

Turn this YAML file:


  save: Save
  load: Load
  welcome(String name): "Hello $name!"
  logout: Logout

Into these generated Dart classes:

class ExampleMessages {
    const ExampleMessages();
    ButtonExampleMessages get button => ButtonExampleMessages(this);
    UsersExampleMessages get users => UsersExampleMessages(this);
class ButtonExampleMessages {
    final ExampleMessages _parent;
    const ButtonExampleMessages(this._parent);
    String get save => "Save";
    String get load => "Load";
class UsersExampleMessages {
    final ExampleMessages _parent;
    const UsersExampleMessages(this._parent);
    String get logout => "Logout";
    String welcome(String name) => "Hello $name!";

... and use them in your code - plain and simple.

ExampleMessages m = ExampleMessages();
// outputs: Hello World!

Package is an extension (custom builder) for build_runner (Dart standard for source generation) and it can be used with Flutter, AngularDart or any other type of Dart project.

i69n: 51 points simpler than your standard i18n! #

Motivation and goals #

  • The official Dart/Flutter approach to i18n seems to be ... complicated and kind of ... heavyweight.
  • I would like my messages to be checked during compile time. Is that message really there?
  • Key to the localized message shouldn't be just some arbitrary String, it should be a getter method!
  • And if the message takes some parameters, the method should take those parameters!
  • I like to bundle messages into thematic groups, the i18n tool should support that and help me with it.
  • Dart has awesome string interpolation, I want to leverage that!
  • I like build_runner and code generation.
  • I love the name. i69n is hilarious.

Solution #

Write your messages into a YAML file:

exampleMessages.i69n.yaml (default messages):

  ok: OK
  done: DONE
  create: Create invoice
  delete: Delete invoice

Write your translations into other YAML files:

exampleMessages_cs.i69n.yaml (_cs = Czech translation)

  done: Hotovo
  create: Vytvořit fakturu
  delete: Smazat fakturu

... run the webdev tool, or build_runner directly, and use your messages like this:

ExampleMessages m = ExampleMessages();
print(m.generic.ok); // output: OK
print(m.generic.done); // output: DONE

m = ExampleMessages_cs();
print(m.generic.ok); // output: OK
print(m.generic.done); // output: Hotovo

Parameters and pluralization #

The implementation is VERY straightforward, which allows you to do all sorts of crazy stuff:

  create: Create invoice
  delete: Delete invoice
  help: "Use this function
  to generate new invoices and stuff.
  count(int cnt): "You have created $cnt ${_plural(cnt, one:'invoice', many:'invoices')}."
  _apples(int cnt): "${_plural(cnt, one:'apple', many:'apples')}"
  count(int cnt): "You have eaten $cnt ${_apples(cnt)}."

Now see the generated classes:

class ExampleMessages {
    const ExampleMessages();
    InvoiceExampleMessages get invoice => InvoiceExampleMessages(this);        
    ApplesExampleMessages get apples => ApplesExampleMessages(this);
class InvoiceExampleMessages {
    final ExampleMessages _parent;
    const InvoiceExampleMessages(this._parent);
    String get create => "Create invoice";
    String get help => "Use this function to generate new invoices and stuff. Awesome!";
    String get delete => "Delete invoice";
    String count(int cnt) => "You have created $cnt ${_plural(cnt, one:'invoice', many:'invoices')}.";

class ApplesExampleMessages {
    final ExampleMessages _parent;
    const ApplesExampleMessages(this._parent);
    String _apples(int cnt) => "${_plural(cnt, one:'apple', many:'apples')}";
    String count(int cnt) => "You have eaten $cnt ${_apples(cnt)}.";

See how you can reuse the pluralization of _apples(int cnt)? 💯!!!

There are three functions you can use in your message:

String _plural(int count, {String zero, String one, String two, String few, String many, String other})

String _cardinal(int count, {String zero, String one, String two, String few, String many, String other})

String _ordinal(int count, {String zero, String one, String two, String few, String many, String other})

_plural and _cardinal do the same. I just felt that _plural is a little bit less scary name and in most cases that's the one you need.

We need only two forms of the word "apple" in English. "Apple" (one) and "apples" (many). But in Czech, we need three:

  _apples(int cnt): "${_plural(cnt, one:'jablko', few: 'jablka', many:'jablek')}"

See also:

How to use generated classes #

How to decide what translation to use (ExampleMessages_cs?, ExampleMessages_hu?) is up to you. The package simply generates message classes, that's all.

import 'exampleMessages.i69n.dart';
import 'exampleMessages_cs.i69n.dart' deferred as cs;

void main() async {
  ExampleMessages m = ExampleMessages();

  await cs.loadLibrary();
  m = cs.ExampleMessages_cs(); // see? ExampleMessages_cs extends ExampleMessages

Where and how to store instances of these message classes - again, up to you. I would consider ScopedModel for Flutter and registering messages instance into dependency injection in AngularDart.

But in this case a singleton would be acceptable also.

Dynamic access using String keys #

It's still useful to access your messages using the String keys in some cases. For example when the key of the message is composed dynamically at runtime, maybe like this:

var vehicleTypeMessageKey = "VehicleType.${data['type']'}";

You can access your messages like this:

print("static:  "+m.generic.ok);
print("dynamic: "+m.generic['ok']);
print("or even: "+m['generic.ok']);

How to use with Flutter #

Create YAML file with your messages, for example:


Add build_runner as a dev_dependency and i69n as a dependency to pubspec.yaml:

    sdk: flutter
  i69n: any

  build_runner: any
    sdk: flutter

Open a terminal and in the root of your Flutter project run:

flutter packages pub run build_runner watch

... and keep it running. Your message classes will appear next to YAML files and will be rebuilt automatically each time you change the source YAML.

For one-time (re)build of your messages run:

flutter packages pub run build_runner build

Import generated messages and use them:

import 'packages:my_app/messages/foo.i69n.dart'


Foo m = Foo();
return Text(m.bar);

How to use with AngularDart #

You are probably using webdev tool already, so you just need to add i69n as a dependency and that's all.

Custom pluralization #

The package can correctly decide between 'one', 'few', 'many', etc. only for English and Czech (for now). But you can easily plug your own language, see example/main.dart and Czech and English implementation.

If you implement support for your language, please let me know, I'll gladly embed it into the package.


  • More detailed docs.
  • Use it in some of our projects for real.
  • Current limitation: default language must be english
  • TODO: support custom imports

Example #

See example. Clone the package repository (https://github.com/fnx-io/i69n) and run:

webdev serve example:8080


pub run build_runner serve example:8080

Now open the browser http://localhost:8080/ and watch the dev tools console.

Credits #

Created by https://fnx.io.

pub points



Simple internationalization tool for Dart and Flutter, based on YAML files and source generation.

Repository (GitHub)
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API reference




build, build_config, dart_style, yaml


Packages that depend on i69n