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Re: debconf template translation

On Sun, Mar 02, 2003 at 01:03:16PM -0500, Joey Hess wrote:
> Michael Bramer wrote:
> > yes, but we don't need a Debian developer for translation. If the Debian
> > developer don't understand the translation, he only impaired the
> > process!
> The same could be argued about fixing bugs or anything else. I just got

Not when you take the full argument into account; textual data in packages
is just that --- data. It really is logically separate from the code, as
gettext helps show.

There are many reasons not to require "translations" (by which I really mean
any textual data, including the "original" -- usually english -- text) to be
kept within a package.

* It's a potential PITA for maintainers; they should be able to choose whether
to be involved in translation or not (clearly some feel strongly each way).

* We should not be requiring all systems (or even archives) to install 20 or
more (just a guess) times the amount of textual data that most will need. For
some packages this will be significant, for others not.

* It's far more efficient as a process to be able to "overlay" textual data
onto the rest of the package's contents.

* It enables third-party translations.

* It fits the standard UNIX way of doing things (avoiding monoliths).

* It's more elegant and I like the idea ;)

The stumbling block is the fact that not everything maintains a nice
separation between code and textual data. I'm not sure how we could
get around this at the moment, but it's worth thinking about.

In my ideal world, you would be able to list (once) the languages that
you wanted to have on your system (and where to get them from), and
from then on you'd hardly notice that you weren't just getting everything
from the one package each time.

As far as testing goes, there are all sorts of ways of dealing with keeping
things in sync (and deciding when it's not worth it), once you have separated
the translations from the main package.



Nick Phillips -- nwp@lemon-computing.com
Love is in the offing.  Be affectionate to one who adores you.

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