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Re: [PATCH] standards: rewrite section on quoting

From: Paul Smith
Subject: Re: [PATCH] standards: rewrite section on quoting
Date: Tue, 20 Dec 2011 19:11:58 -0500

On Tue, 2011-12-20 at 15:44 -0800, Karl Berry wrote:
> Paolo, since Paul clearly feels strongly about this, can you change the
> wording to allow either one?  Then we can see what rms says.

I'm afraid I don't quite understand the proposed change.

>From the point of view of an implementor, which I am, I always write all
my strings in the C locale: that's how gettext works.  All the
translations I support come to me from the Translation Project: I don't
write any of them, not even the putative "en" UTF8-based translation
(which, as has been pointed out, doesn't exist in most if not all
projects: they simply fall back to the C locale).

Like it or not, and many don't, the previous behavior was quite clear:
in the C locale, you should use `...' quoting.

The new behavior is not clear to me as an implementor; it says:

        In the C locale, GNU programs should stick to plain ASCII for
        quotation characters in messages to users: preferably 0x27
        (@samp{'}) for both opening and closing quotes.
        If you support internationalization, translators should be able
        to provide their own quote characters.  By convention, the
        string @samp{"`"} will translate to the opening quote and the
        string @samp{"'"} will translate to the closing quote.

I don't understand how to reconcile these two paragraphs.

The first paragraph above says use '...'.  The second says that
translators will translate "`" to an opening quote and "'" to a closing
quote... but I won't have those in my code if I follow the direction in
the first paragraph.

 Paul D. Smith <address@hidden>          Find some GNU make tips at:            
 "Please remain calm...I may be mad, but I am a professional." --Mad Scientist

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