On 05/27/2010 03:27 AM, Eric "Sparks" Christensen wrote:
The easy way to do this is to publish all documents in all languages.
That way the guide would be available in English no matter if the text
was translated or not.
Of course this would mean partial translations would be published which,
in my opinion, are better than no translation.
Actually, we can do it slightly smarter than that; Publican has an
option for exactly this use-case: the "ignored_translations" parameter
in the publican.cfg file.
For example, if "ignored_translations" in the Installation Guide was set
for Italian and Spanish, then when you built the book for those
languages, it would ignore any PO files available and just build the
book using the English strings. For very incomplete translations, I
think this is better than a book mostly in English with a paragraph
here-and-there in a translated language, but translation teams might
have other ideas?
I can see two downsides though:
1. It seems wasteful to have multiple copies of exactly the same content
stored on the server. It will also make maintaining the site much more
difficult if the site image (web.git) grows to something like 40 times
its current size. (although this will no longer be a problem when we
move to a fully automated publishing system shortly)
2. At the moment, when you see a book in a language menu, you know that
it is translated. The situation is not so bad for widely translated
languages, but for less widely translated languages, users will click on
links and most will be in English; they might not even discover that
*any* books have been translated into their language, so the hard work
of the translation team gets lost in a sea of English.
In case translators have not realised, the menus are now all
automatically generated, so it's not possible for us to manually add
links any more. I will ask the Publican developer today whether some
kind of "cross linking" is possible. Even if this becomes possible, it
would solve problem 1 but not problem 2.
I wonder if a better solution would be for me to add a prominent notice
to the "Welcome" page to tell visitors "to see a full list of all
documentation, change the language to English"?