Teaching basic lab skills
for research computing

Carpentries for Latin America

The idea of translating Carpentries’ lessons into Spanish and other languages is not new [1, 2, 3]. At the end of 2017, a group of volunteers (see Initial Group members below) embarked on the goal of making Spanish translations a reality. We are very happy that many more volunteers joined us in this effort. We did it, and today we can make the fruit of these months of work known to the entire community!

The experience:

The experience of translating The Carpentries lessons of has been very valuable.

“For me this experience has been incredible! Thank you for putting all your effort into this project. Many people responded with overflowing enthusiasm to participate and collaborate in the different facets of this project. It was a pleasure to work with all of you.” - H.S.

“I’m very happy to participate (at the same time learn) in this project!” - I.L.

“Thanks everyone! Your contribution is a giant step toward realizing a long-time goal of translating @swcarpentry lessons from English into Spanish!” - R.H.

“It was a great experience. I loved the work environment and enthusiasm of the group. The feedback and analysis were very enriching for me.” - VJJ

The achievements:

  1. A glossary and guidelines document for collaborators
  2. A translation of the Unix Shell lesson
  3. A translation of the Version Control with Git lesson
  4. A styles template for translated lessons
  5. Building a Spanish-speaking community in the Carpentries to further disseminate the best practices of programming and reproducible research

The translation process:

The translations were organized by choosing the lessons to be translated and assigning a translator in charge of each episode. Subsequently, each translated lesson was reviewed by two other translators. Throughout this process, the translators exchanged suggestions and produced a series of guidelines to follow for future translations (see achievements). The majority of the work was done asynchronously, but some volunteer groups worked together geographically in the same place during ‘hackathons’ and ‘do-a-thons’.

Future plans

There are always opportunities to keep improving the lessons, and we look forward to your contributions. To contribute, start by reading and using the lessons, and open a new issue or submit a pull request to collaborate. The English and Spanish versions of lessons will began to differ following contributions of the community; therefore, before the next release (in ~ 6 months) we will work with a translation coordinator to introduce bidirectional changes to the English and Spanish versions.

The volunteers:

All this work has been possible thanks to the effort and time of many volunteers from several countries, including Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Cuba, Spain, United States, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela. We especially appreciate:

The initial group:

  • Heladia (Hely) Salgado and her entire working group in Mexico (Shirley Alquicira, Leticia Vega, Veronica Jimenez Jacinto, Irma Martinez-Flores, Kevin Alquicira, Romualdo Zayas-Lagunas, Daniela Ledezma, Laura Gomez Romero and Juan M. Barrios).
  • Francisco Palm, who supported the infrastructure.
  • Paula Andrea Martínez, communicated with all the volunteers.
  • Selene Fernández, who shared her translated version of Git.

Volunteers of Software Carpentry and Data Carpentry

  • Sue McClatchy for helping us in the beginning with the open call for participation in the translation of the lessons.
  • Raniere Silva who helped us a lot with the style template
  • Paula Andrea Martínez and Rayna Harris co-organizing the Hackathons

Volunteers who joined through the open invitation:

  • Silvana Pereyra, Hugo Guillén, Otoniel Maya, Javier Forment, Matías Andina, Olemis Lang, Laura Angelone, Alejandra González-Beltrán, Ana Beatriz Villaseñor Altamirano, Kevin Martínez-Folgar, Nohemi Huanca

Volunteers of Open-Con 2017’s Do-a-Thon

  • Rayna Harris, Paula Andrea Martinez, Guillermina Actis, Julieta (Juli) Arancio, Eunice Mercado, Ivonne Lujano

Organizers of a Hackathon and a planned workshop in Buenos Aires

  • Rayna Harris, Juli Arancio and Marceline Abadeer

Employees The Carpentries:

  • Erin Becker and François Michonneau, for the push to publish.

Publication Records

  • Heladia Saldago (ed), 48 authors: “Software Carpentry: La Terminal de Unix”, The Carpentries, Version 2018.04.1, March 2018, 10.5281/zenodo.1198732
  • Rayna Harris (ed), 49 authors: “Software Carpentry: Control de Versiones con Git”, The Carpentries, Version v2018.04.3, March 2018, 10.5281/zenodo.1197332


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