Tristan Rice

Software Engineer - ML Infra

i18n-js with sinatra-asset-pipeline

2 Minutes 300 Words

I just implemented i18n-js support in WebSync. This came around after realizing my localization support for the JavaScript front end was lacking.

The i18n-js library is super useful and integrates directly with Sprockets and I18n making it as easy as doing:

//= require i18n
//= require i18n/translations

// Some translation

However it’s designed for use with Rails and thus doesn’t play nicely with Sinatra and sinatra-asset-pipeline. While it loaded just fine, Sprockets couldn’t find the i18n javascript files.

Sprockets::FileNotFound - couldn't find file 'i18n'

I’m pretty sure this is because of the black magic Rails uses to find files. My solution was to force i18n-js to load the middleware and add the static files to the Sprockets files. It’s a huge hack, especially with using “I18n:JS.method(:config).source_location” to find their location.

Here’s the full code:

# i18n-js, this is a huge hack to get it to work with sinatra-asset-pipeline
require "i18n/js/middleware"

sprockets.register_preprocessor "application/javascript", :"i18n-js_dependencies" do |context, source|
  if context.logical_path == "i18n/filtered"
    ::I18n.load_path.each {|path| context.depend_on(File.expand_path(path))}
i18n_js_location = File.expand_path('../../../app/assets/javascripts',
sprockets.append_path i18n_js_location

If anyone knows a better way of doing this, I’d love to know.

As a side note, I wish I had designed WebSync as a RoR app from the start. It would have saved a lot of time hacking Sinatra into being almost identical to Rails. *sighs*