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Re: Summary (Re: A system for localizing documentation strings)

From: Richard Stallman
Subject: Re: Summary (Re: A system for localizing documentation strings)
Date: Sat, 28 Jul 2007 10:11:30 -0400

    We don't need that.  Translators are organized in teams, and everything uses
    gettext.  We do not want a different mechanism here.  Many translators
    translates programs they very rarely, if ever, use.  It would be a mistake 
    not use gettext.

I already explained the problem in using gettext from Emacs: how to
decide WHICH .po files to use.  In Emacs it won't work to use just
one, or even a few dozen.  I think this is a hard problem, if we want
results that are usable in practice.

Maybe it can be solved; I encourage people to look for a solution.
However, to argue for use of gettext without solving that problem is
not useful.

One _possible_ advantage in using gettext is that it might be more
efficient in speed and time.  I don't know how it works, but it might
work by mapping directly .po files into memory (using less space and
time than reading it into Lisp), and it might have optimized lookup
within the file.

With gettext it is probably possible (whether or not currently
implemented) to delete a .po file from memory if it goes unused for a
while.  That would be useful in Emacs; we could treat the in-core .po
files as a cache for the ones on disk.  By contrast, this would be very hard
if we read in the translations as Lisp data.

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