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Re: lynx-dev How to maintain sources with gettext() ?

From: Bela Lubkin
Subject: Re: lynx-dev How to maintain sources with gettext() ?
Date: Tue, 10 Nov 1998 19:01:02 -0800

Nelson Henry Eric wrote:

> > Is there any special limitation for code using gettext(),
> > e.g. to change english string or just change the line number:
> If the English string is changed, i.e., the ``msgid ""'', then
> the .po file must be updated.  That is why none of the .po files
> should be included in the distribution.  If they are, then really
> it seems to me that the "distributors" are obligated to update
> all of them.  What a waste of time.

But then who *does* update the other language files?

I know what SCO does: if a message is updated, the person doing the
update changes it in all the message catalogues, replacing the foreign
language messages with "STILL_ENGLISH rest of English message".
Translation teams dig out those "STILL_ENGLISH" tags and correct the
messages.  The rule is to change it to "STILL_ENGLISH rest of message"
even if you *think* you know the right translation, because all too
often people who think that are wrong.  Lynx, having a much more
international development team, would probably have people doing updates
who would know the correct messages in 2, 3, maybe even more languages,
but still not all of them.  So I think a good rule is:

  When adding a message, add it to all the catalogues, using
  "STILL_ENGLISH rest of message" in any catalogues you can't fill in
  correctly yourself.

  When changing an existing message, fix any ones you can.  Any that you
  can't, add a "STILL_ENGLISH" marker, plus the new English message, and
  something to show the old non-English text of the message, i.e.

    STILL_ENGLISH Good day, eh!  (formerly "Guten Tag!")

If the message catalogues are distributed in the source, they can be
updated in this manner, and translators can jump in at any time during
ongoing development.  If only the English catalogue is distributed,
translators need to wait until a stable release point or else maintain
their own parallel development setups, which is a hassle.  It's much
easier and safer to check everything into a central repository, much
more conducive to synchronized updates of everything that needs updated.


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