ubiquity-slideshow-ubuntu: contemplating some string changes

Ask Hjorth Larsen asklarsen at gmail.com
Thu Apr 1 17:53:58 BST 2010

Dear Danilo

On Thu, Apr 1, 2010 at 5:03 PM, Danilo Šegan <danilo at canonical.com> wrote:
> Hi Khaled,
> I am sorry you find this missing feature of Launchpad a deal-breaker.
> Here's a few explanations on what's the case with fuzzy matching, and
> other ways you can work-around it.
> У пет, 26. 03 2010. у 00:00 +0200, Khaled Hosny пише:
>> What I can't really understand how a very simple and basic feature
>> like marking old translation as fuzzy when merging new templates
>> doesn't yet exist! some thing that gettext tools had years before my birth.
> I am sorry to hear you feel this way. gettext fuzzy matching works very
> well for cases like typos. Unfortunately, it also fails for anything
> else because it uses an algorithm based on character counting.  I've
> seen numerous cases were translations in Ubuntu were 'approved' from
> incorrect fuzzy suggestions.  At the same time, majority of messages in
> Ubuntu are "short" where it does more harm than good.  And with long
> messages, it's even harder to notice wrong translation if it differs in
> something like "not".

But many translators (and definitely *all* reviewers, people with
permission to accept suggestions) should know what fuzzy means.  When
dealing with a fuzzy message it is clearly necessary to see what the
difference from the previous English message was - which is true for
all semi-automatic translation suggestions.  It seems that fuzzy
support was eliminated because the translation teams are not *trusted*
to handle them correctly, which is not a very nice thing.  It should
be assumed that translation teams know what they are doing.

I don't want to sound too antagonistic here (we all want to improve
Rosetta!), but I view the lack of support for fuzzy strings as a
serious problem, making launchpad translations inherently more
wasteful when comparing to 'direct' po-file translations (such as the
GNOME damned lies translation site or translationproject.org).

> I am really sorry Launchpad causes so much waste of your time. However,
> apart from the workaround Gabor mentioned, there is another: download
> latest POT/PO file and do your merging locally using gettext tools, and
> you'll get exactly the same benefit msgmerge (from gettext) provides you
> otherwise.
> You'll have to go through all the fuzzy messages in an offline PO editor
> (like KBabel, GTranslator, POEdit...), but once you are done you can
> re-upload it (don't forget to strip fuzzy flags off).
> I don't see how this is different than what happens anywhere else (like
> GNOME, KDE, or anywhere else at all). It's just that Launchpad otherwise
> hides all the complexity so doing this step that is painful everywhere
> is as painful with Launchpad, instead of being simple as everything else
> is simple in Launchpad. But then again, I *am* biased.

Do the downloaded files from Launchpad contain the fuzzies (such that
they are still there behind the scenes)?  Or is that only true of the
upstream versions?  I didn't find any fuzzies in the modules I just
tested, so I assume no.  But I would very much like the answer to be

Best regards
Ask Hjorth Larsen
Danish translation team

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