Translation status for ubuntu-docs

Hannie Dumoleyn lafeber-dumoleyn2 at
Tue Mar 27 09:44:14 UTC 2012

Op 26-03-12 17:10, Ask Hjorth Larsen schreef:
> Dear translators and documentation people
> On Mon, 26 Mar 2012, Timo Jyrinki wrote:
>> 2012/3/26 Jeremy Bicha <jbicha at>:
>>> I uploaded the potfile for ubuntu-docs tonight and opened up
>>> translations on Launchpad for the precise branch.
>> What about the ubuntu-docs under /ubuntu/precise/+source/ubuntu-docs -
>> it'll be updated at the time of actual upload?
>> For future, do you think that ubuntu-docs under the Ubuntu
>> translations should simply be not visible until the final template is
>> uploaded? Or this current system still better? I think one of the
>> biggest invisible problems in Ubuntu translations making people go
>> away (if they notice it) is the fact that work is wasted. Most of the
>> people translating do not know that probably a lot of their
>> translations will not be used if they've been translating ubuntu-docs
>> in the last month or so, or even this coming week.
>> This would not be such a big problem it is today without being
>> combined with the lack of supporting fuzzy strings in LP. Then when
>> the docs team do a cleanup of commas, articles or word orders (I'd
>> assume there is always a bunch of those in addition to total
>> rewrites), quality translations that would still have a lot value
>> (either 100% match or something easily fixed to match the new form)
>> are being lost. This is especially big problem in ubuntu-docs, since
>> it has long strings, and a single small change anywhere will always
>> reset a big amount of translated text compared to application UI texts
>> that are usually much shorter.
>> With the new precise ubuntu-docs template, I see that while the total
>> number of strings have stayed roughly the same (+100 strings), the
>> number of untranslated strings have raised from 358 to 1086. What I
>> personally will do is:
>> - now very quickly save the current Ubuntu precise's ubuntu-docs PO file
>> - when the new ubuntu-docs gets to precise proper, fuzzy match the
>> downloaded PO file to the new template manually with gettext tools
>> - in case of simple word order / punctuation / etc changes simply
>> unfuzzy or make a little fix in the translation
>> - upload the new PO with "saved" translations back to Launchpad
>> But I'd estimate that not many of the languages have the luck of
>> someone doing this work. In the other language teams, there might be
>> frustrated people noticing that the hard work they've done
>> (translating ubuntu-docs is really hard work since there is so much of
>> it) has for a part disappeared.
>> Not that this would be a new problem of course, but what do you think
>> about the template hiding idea or do you have any other ideas to help
>> this problem (other than contributing to LP code)?
>> -Timo
> I apologize in advance for the considerable amount of grumbling below. 
> But I think we have big problems.
> I think Launchpad should be entirely disabled for docs translations.  
> The lack of fuzzy matching makes Launchpad almost useless for anything 
> but UI translations.  The alternative is to use e.g. a bzr archive to 
> maintain the translations.  This requires more technical knowledge, 
> but we (translations coordinators) can help individual translators 
> with it, and actually get the job done.  We are qualified to use tools 
> like bzr, msgmerge and other things to make sure that work is not 
> lost.  But right now I (as a coordinator) am quite powerless to stop 
> the waste of time. The only thing I can do is to not recommend that 
> people work on certain things.  I cannot even put a big red sticker on 
> the ubuntu docs page on Launchpad saying "don't translate this".  I 
> have only indirect means of communication (e-mails) around Launchpad.  
> This makes everything very complicated and not something I look 
> forward to dealing with.
> There is only one thing which is worse than not getting a voluntary 
> contribution due to it being too difficult, and that is to get the 
> contribution and then throw it away.  Because that contributor will 
> not come back.
> I and others have previously requested fuzzy matching and some other 
> IMHO essential features on Launchpad, but there seems to be no plans 
> to implement any of it or even recognize the importance.
> So please disable ubuntu docs in Launchpad.
> Best regards
> Ask
Hello Ask,
I fully understand your grumbling, but for the moment we have to make do 
with what we have.
Because I firmly believe in the translation of Ubuntu Desktop Guide, I 
translated most of the Oneiric version on LP. And when I click F1 on my 
desktop (Oneiric), I am so proud to see that almost everything is in 
Dutch now.

More information about the ubuntu-translators mailing list