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lynx-dev Re: message catalog files (was: da.po file)

From: Webmaster Jim
Subject: lynx-dev Re: message catalog files (was: da.po file)
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 16:29:44 -0400

On Wed, Jul 19, 2000 at 02:05:15PM -0500, Klaus Weide wrote:
> > I use them to test the message catalog builds in the stripped-down
> > release. 
> I see how they can be useful to you or some other developer for testing,
> but I don't think that it follows that they should be packaged.
> Also, is this even something _worth_ testing?  After all, you are testing
> whether something can be built which is useless to build for real use -
> a lynx installation with about 3 translated messages per language.

Whatever. If I can generate the message in the proper language, I am
done with it. I also like to credit those translators who have done the
work for Lynx, even if their work is not included in the distribution.
Hopefully, it may be an incentive to future translators when they see a
gap in the work (e.g., Spanish).

> > As the full translations are developed, I've tried to put
> > pointers to the full ones in the stubs.
> >  
> > > In my mind, they can easily give to the installer the impression that
> > > they are the real thing, so he/she will never bother to get the real
> > > ones.  After all, he/she has already installed lynx with message
> > > catalogs.
> > 
> > Since only about 3 messages are in the stubs, I don't think anyone
> > will believe a translation is working correctly, and will then try
> > to get the message :-).
> Ok, I see the note at the top.  But this assumes that the person compiling
> and installing lynx actually looks into those files.  Why would he/she?
> Normally one doesn't look through all C source files to look for comments
> either, when one just compiles and installs some software.  I don't see
> why .po files are different from .c files in that respect.
> Maybe you also assume that the person doing the build and install is
> someone who would notice that there are only about 3 messages per language,
> but that is generally not a good assumption.  It will be true on a
> personal build by the user who is actually going to use lynx in his/her
> language.  It generally won't be true for someone just building lynx for
> a multiuser machine or for a binary package, unless that someone has a
> special interest and/or knowledge about gettext and i18n.  A case in
> point: the Debian packaging of lynx, see
> <>.  Apparently, the Debian
> maintainer's intention is to provide a lynx package with message catalogs
> (the binary package contains the stub catalogs, and previous versions
> contained fuller catalogs for at least some languages).  And apparently
> the D.M. completely missed out on the fact that those .po files are
> just stubs.

This problem would never have happened if the message catalogs were
included in the Lynx distribution. SEP.
> > > You also seem to be generating them with an ancient version of the
> > > gettext tools (at least, the da.po included in your mail).  They...
> > 
> > Yes, the stubs are probably cut-and-paste junk from several years of
> > hacking on translation files and fairly worthless. They serve as a
> > reminder of things-to-do...
> I suggest to take them out of any distributed "stripped-down" source
> tar/zip.  It would make things clearer:
>   - THIS is the source package without NLS message catalogs.  If you
>     want localized messages, either use the package below, or download
>     catalogs separately (from ...).
>   - THIS is the source package with NLS message catalogs (as available
>     as of ...).

I don't see the harm in them other than for people who don't know they
haven't installed Lynx properly. Same as if the destination of lynx.cfg
is unwritable, or temp is not set right...

> > > > the parallel full
> > > > distribution (at has the catalogs.
> > > This is a mystery URL that I've only ever seen, as far as I recall,
> > > in messages from you.  If people are supposed to find it, it needs
> > > to be advertised.  Someone looking at either
> > > <> or <> will
> > > have no idea that a "gnumatic" version or page exists, there are no
> > > links.
> > 
> > See
> > (yes, I know it has that redirect you don't like--it's not my site
> Well does anyone like it? :)

No comment.
> > or page).  It refers one to:
> > 
> >
> > and thence to
> >
> Even that reference is unclear.  It points to one specific file, not
> to a whole directory, and the specific file is not even the latest one
> right now.  And the link is introduced as only "URL information [that]
> may help translators ... for if they need finer translation context",
> not something a normal user who isn't a translator need to be concerned
> about.  The links for "more comprehensive information" just point to
> <> and <> - and from there,
> no hints to "gnumatic" are available.

Perhaps someone who has time to write clearer documentation could put
this into the FAQ, although the question doesn't seem to appear
on the list much.  I may add it to the pages some day.
> > The latter is the style that the Translation Project is advertising for
> > users reference. I'm working on publishing the 2.8.4 URL when we have
> > some newer messages worth mentioning.
> I hope you can do that soon, and not wait till there's something more
> "worth mentioning".  You have already done all the work - thank you! -
> so it should be easily findable for someone visiting the
> <> pages and not just from the TP pages.

That depends on my spare time and on patches that have text in them.

Marvin the Paranoid Android says:
I ache therefore I am.
Or in my case, I am therefore I ache.

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