[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Ping

Hi Cristian,

thank you for your interest in Icelandic!  Icelanders in general are
very proud of their language.  Since Iceland is very isolated (being an
island in the middle of the Atlantic), Icelandic is the modern language
that most resembles the common Nordic language that once was spoken in
Scandinavia and the northern parts of the British isles.

I have actually given this issue some thought and although it would
certainly be heartwarming to have Icelandic in the list of translations
of the Debian installer, my conclusion is that it is hardly worth the
effort for the following reasons.

1)  Icelanders are about 290.000, of which probably over 80% use
computers.  Last time I looked 95% of the worlds PCs ran windows so
Linux usage in Iceland is certainly below 5%.  I remember some statistics
for servers that show that Debian is run on about 20% of Linux boxes.
Thus adding up the numbers I find an upper limit of
	290.000*0.8*0.05*0.2 = 2320  
Debian users in Iceland.  (My gut feeling, based among other things on
the traffic on this mailing list, is that this is a gross overestimate).

2)  Since Icelandic is useless outside Iceland a great majority of
Icelanders speak English fluently.  Each and every one of those 
Debian users is part of that majority.

3)  The translation of technical documents (like the Debian installer)
to Icelandic would involve "inventing" a lot of words that are currently
lacking in Icelandic.  Although this is considered a noble trade in
Iceland, the result is that the Icelandic installer would actually be
less understandable to the target audience than the English version.
Most users would thus prefer the English one anyway (this is my own
experience with such translations).

4)  Since such little demand is for the translation, the danger is that it
will be poorly maintained and thus be a baggage to the overall project.

I hate to sound so pessimistic but I think I am being reasonable.

Just to bring the info into the discussion:  How much work is actually
involved in the translation?

I would love to hear more opinions from others on this list since the
question of translations is a rather fundamental one for Icelandic 
free software users.

All the best,
Kristinn B. Gylfason

On Fri, Sep 24, 2004 at 10:26:41AM +0200, Christian Perrier wrote:
> Just discovering this list....
> I send this mail just to see if some icelandic-speaking
> users/developers would be interested in working on the Icelandic
> translation of the Debian Installer. Icelandic is now among the very
> rare european languages for which no translation currently exists and
> all subscribers in this list (if there are some) will agree that this
> is a shame..:-)
> Please keep me CC'ed to answers.
> -- 
> -- 
> To UNSUBSCRIBE, email to debian-user-icelandic-REQUEST@lists.debian.org
> with a subject of "unsubscribe". Trouble? Contact listmaster@lists.debian.org

Reply to: