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Re: Editor Priorities

On Thu, May 09, 2002 at 03:29:55PM +0900, Tomohiro KUBOTA wrote:
> Well, you are right, but I think one of the reasons why Debian
> (and other Linux/BSD systems) is not so popular in CJK world is
> that it is not useful for CJK yet.

And it is work on standards and upstream libraries and applications that
is going to make it so, not playing numbers games with Debian package
alternative priorities, which only impact packages which already exist.

> > Making Debian more accessible to CJK, bidi, and Indic users is indeed
> > important just as it is important to make Debian more accessible to
> > users with visual or motor impairments.  However, I would caution
> > against any of the user groups exercising some sort of veto power over
> > policy enhancements to Debian which have no effect on them.
> No effect?  It is not true.  I am Japanese speaker and a user of
> Debian, so I know the effect very much.

In that case, show me the numbers.  Alternative priority calculations
are not the proper engine for motivating future upstream development.
That is the lesson I took away from x-terminal-emulator.

> In case of visual/motor impairments, I completely agree it is 
> important to support these users.  If there are any easy
> technical way to improve usability for them without spoil our
> usability, it should be adopted.  Unfortunately, I am not an
> expert of this field and I don't have any idea.  However, when
> someone would propose something in this field, I would never
> oppose them.

If we had a text editor designed for the visually impaired that was very
frustrating for sighted users to operate, would you "never oppose" a
proposal to make that text editor the default?

> However, it is
> technically possible to write LANG-variable-sensible softwares
> and we should encourage such softwares, instead of "racist"
> softwares which only supports European languages.

I think there is a corollary of Godwin's law that addresses this sort of

> Yes, people should be called racist who refuse to support non-European
> languages even though there are easy ways to do so and there are no
> technical problem.

Bzzzt.  This argument is completely off-topic.  Alternative priorities
have nothing to do with what is currently supported in Debian.  Setting
the number does not add or remove support for ANYTHING.

> We, as integrators, now have an easy way to improve equality between

Uh, alternative priorities are about anything BUT equality.

If you want equality between editors, oppose the assignment of
alternative priorities altogether.

> languages, because there are several editors and other softwares which
> can handle CJK/bidi/... languages.  Why should we avoid giving priority
> to such softwares?

Because they might alienate and frustrate more users than they help.

> > This battle was already fought with x-terminal-emulator.  Why do we have
> > to rehash it?
> I didn't hear any convincing opinion against it.  Anyway, I decided
> to improve and internationalize terminal emulators.  It takes years
> and now it is partly successful.  rxvt-beta and eterm have LC_CTYPE
> sensibility support which is written by me.  I am also joining the
> development of mlterm and try to improve xterm with Juliusz's luit.

And that's exactly where this type of work *should* be going on.

> However, in this case, priority in Debian alternative system is
> completely Debian's problem, not upstream problem.  

Right, which means it may be a poor fit to the CJK/bidi/Indic problem.

> > The proposed policy does not negatively impact the user community you
> > claim to represent.
> It is relative problem.  Why *mandatory* item is less scored than,
> for example, redo/undo feature which I agree is useful but not mandatory?
> It is obvious my idea improves usability for non-European-language-
> speakers.  Also, it is completely Debian's (not upstream's) problem
> and it is easy to achieve my idea.  On the other hand, you didn't
> explain a demerit of my idea which is large enough to compensate the
> merit.  Could you please explain?  Or, do you have any alternative
> proposal?

Use PGI to build ISO images that ship the multilingualized apps you
want, and kick "racist" software to the curb.


(Though you'll find, ironically, that the PGI installer is itself not
i18n'ed, mainly because GTK+ 1.2's support for i18n is too immature.)

G. Branden Robinson                |    Damnit, we're all going to die;
Debian GNU/Linux                   |    let's die doing something *useful*!
branden@debian.org                 |    -- Hal Clement, on comments that
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |       space exploration is dangerous

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