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Re: Key bindings proposal

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: Key bindings proposal
Date: Fri, 06 Aug 2010 12:12:02 +0900

Uday S Reddy writes:
 > On 8/5/2010 4:14 AM, Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:
 > > No no no!  Internationalizing the documentation is enthusiasm
 > > generating; it brings in new contributors who feel they're not able to
 > > do anything else.
 > Good idea.  But, how will the translations be kept uptodate?

That's the whole point.  On the technical side, there are tools for
identifying changes in the translatables.

On the manpower side, just for the ones I'm familiar with, there are
whole organizations of translators at Debian and Ubuntu who volunteer
to do these things, and probably at GNOME and KDE and others.  When
Emacs goes into prerelease freeze, one of the things you freeze is the
translatable content.  Then you tell the translators that they can
work without fear that their translations will be obsoleted before

There also must be thousands of Emacs users who are uncomfortable
contributing code, but if there was a serious effort on I18N would
consider translating to their own language an important and fulfilling
task.  Maintaining the sense of fulfilment requires proper respect
from the developers (cf. the description of the release cycle above,
plus as RMS imples some help from  developers on where the priorities
are so the translators can be confident their work is important).

Even if their primary interest was translating, such folks are more
likely to convert to Emacs developers (typically via a patch to
po-mode, you see?) than other users, since Emacs is a tool they use in
translation (remember, they're volunteers so there's some reason they
*want* to work on Emacs; it's a good bet they're already users).

I haven't been in close touch with the translator community for years,
but I believe that emacs/po-mode is still one of the most popular
tools for them (although web-based tools have been gaining ground

Emacs will probably not be fully translated until machine translation
becomes acceptable.  But that's no reason to give up in advance.

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