Re: Debconf Templates Style Guide
Scripsit Christian Perrier <email@example.com>
[much good stuff snipped]
> Templates text should not make reference to widgets belonging to some
> debconf interfaces. Sentences like "I you answer Yes..." have no
> meaning for users of graphical interfaces which use checkboxes for
> boolean questions.
There used to be, somewhere, a guideline that told maintainers to let
themselves be inspired by the descriptions in the kernel source's
"make fooconfig", especially with regard to telling the user what the
conservative default choice is. Many of the kernel option descriptions
do indeed say "If unsure, answer No" or the like. Or do I misremember?
If I'm right, then the relation between those two pieces of advice
should probably be clarified.
> The extended description should not repeat the short description.
I'm not sure about this point, which seems to be taken from the
guidelines about package descriptions. I'd rather say
The extended description should be able to stand on its own,
*without* the short one. For example, the dialog frontend will
sometimes choose to show the entire extended description first and
only ask the actual question on a separate screen after the user has
confirmed reading the extended one. This depends on the terminal
size and the lenght of the extended description, so it may happen to
users even if it does not happen to you.
Thus, even if the short description says "Complain about split
infinitives", the extended description contain something like
"Foobar can be configured to never complain about split
infinitives...", such that the user knows roughly which decision
he's going to make while he's absorbing the information in the
rest of the extended description.
Henning Makholm "The raccoon's grandchildren are employed as raccoon
children at the "Raccoon" laundering shop. They wash the
laundry white when the laundry is dirty. And the laundry often is."