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Dropping ibus-pinyin (or salvaging libpyzy)?

[Please use debian-input-method@lists.debian.org as main discussion list]

Dear all,

TL;DR: Let's drop package ibus-pinyin from Debian since it implicitly (build-
)depends on the unmaintained python2. If we want to save it, considerable
amount of work need to be done.

Details on the proposed removal of ibus-pinyin are as follows:

The default pinyin input method for ibus used to be ibus-pinyin[1] and its
upstream is https://github.com/ibus/ibus-pinyin/ . However, in recent years
the development shifts towards the libpinyin project, which provides ibus-
libpinyin[2] at https://github.com/libpinyin/ibus-libpinyin . The old ibus-
pinyin package was deprecated but not removed since someone may still prefer
to use it.

However, ibus-pinyin depends on libpyzy[3], a conversion library between
pinyin and bopomofo (a.k.a. zhuyin). This library has a dead upstream at 
https://github.com/hsumita/libpyzy , which was exported from googlecode and
has no activity in the last 10 years. This library heavily depends on some
python2 scripts.

Now that the ongoing Python2 removal transition[4] is likely to complete
within the Bullseye cycle (you may find a progress chart here[5]), it's likely
that the libpyzy library will need to be ported to Python3 or dropped together
with ibus-pinyin, perhaps later this year.

I'm wondering if anyone is interested in porting python2 scripts in libpyzy
project. I had a really quick glance and have an estimation that it will
probably requires 5 hours of porting and another 15 hours of testing to ensure
a proper python3 migration if the developer has good experience in Python2->3
porting. Of course, another option is that we completely throw this library as
well as ibus-pinyin away.

P.S. I discussed it with the Arch Linux maintainer of ibus-pinyin/pyzy back in
2016 and 2018; the conclusion was to keep it at that time. Things have changed
since then.

Let me know if you have any thoughts. Volunteering would be highly welcome.

Boyuan Yang

[1] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/ibus-pinyin
[2] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/ibus-libpinyin
[3] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/libpyzy
[4] https://release.debian.org/transitions/html/python2-rm.html
[5] http://sandrotosi.me/debian/py2removal/py2removal_progress.png

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