[Mageia-discuss] Suggestions

Michael Scherer misc at zarb.org
Sun Oct 24 11:32:11 CEST 2010

Le dimanche 24 octobre 2010 à 09:21 +0200, Wolfgang Bornath a écrit :

> 2. What can we do to improve the package description in the
> "Individual package selection during system installation? Most
> descriptions there only say "Important" or "Comfortable" or some other
> nonsense like that. I really wonder who on earth had that idea!
> We need descriptions of the package, what it does. The description
> should be available for translation, so that according to the set
> language the user sees the package description in his language.

Yup, but that's not trivial, from a technical point of view.

Rpm allow to have translation in spec file, but that's not .po, that's
more "let's translators edit the source code directly", which is
unintegrated with translators tools, do not take care of fuzzy string
and may break software build due to subtilities in specs ( like the
usage of % for macros, etc ).

More ever, everything will appear in the packages indexes, which mean :
- more memory used for all installation
- bigger indexes to download
- longer time to load from disk, which mean longer rpmdrake startup 
- less space on cd and or dvd.

So we need to find a better way.

Better in two points :
- better way to distribute it
- better way to translate it

The distribution part is IMHO the easiest now we have the control of the
main mirror. We can just split the hdlist in 2, one for the description,
for each languages, one for the metadata, and let urpmi/whatever combine
this into a regular hdlist and use this. We can even maybe find a way
that will not break smart and others.

The translation part is more tricky, we tried in the past with the
CVS-po project, but it didn't work, maybe someone who as around that
time could tell us. Anne know for sure, Wolfgang is likely to know too.

Basically, the idea was to extract the summary and description from the
packages indexes, and then convert this as .po file. There is a small
problem however. If we use .po per package, then it will be hellish for
translators to open 10000 files ( imho, maybe I am wrong ). If we use
one .po for repository, then the files are huge and maybe consume too
much ressources ( even if nowadays, laptops are provided with more
memory than the server we use at PLF for everything). 

Maybe we can group rpm .po, like 1 file for 100 rpms description, but I
fear this will bring problem too.

Then we also have to write a software that goes from .po to hdlist, of
course, which may e non trivial ( as it requires both intimate knowledge
about rpm and gettext ).

> 3. The same is needed in rpmdrake.
> In other words:
> We need a way to add descriptions to packages. These descriptions must
> be available for the installer in "Individual package selecteion" and
> there must be a way to have .po files for the translators.


> Is there something which can be done without passing the ball to and
> fro like a tennis match?

On the translation side, it is work. On the improve description side, I
suggest to organize day dedicated to the task, like the bug days. See my
other mail on the thread about it.
Michael Scherer

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