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From Lucien Gentis <>
Subject Re: Doc translation: what about a new workflow?
Date Mon, 18 Apr 2016 10:04:48 GMT

Le 17/04/2016 07:20, Marion & Christophe JAILLET a écrit :
> Hi docs@,


> a few weeks ago someone, a discussion [1] has started about using a 
> web based application in order to translate our documentation.
> The proposal was about Transifex [2].
> Another tool that looks similar is provided by the Apache Foundation 
> itself:
> It works with Pootle. (see [3] which is the version used on t.a.o)
> I don't know yet if our doc format is convenient for it.
> At least, it can use .po files.
> Tools exist to convert docbook (more or less our doc format) to .po 
> files, handle translation and generate back some docbook document.
> I have already used something called 'po4a' for such a process.
> The workflow would be:
>    main documentation in XML files --> generate/manage pot file --> 
> generate/manage po files --> translate using t.a.o --> generate 
> updated XML files for each languages --> generate html/pdf... as we 
> actually do
> The pros:
>     - IMHO, following changes with po files is easier for translators
>     - trunk/2.4.x are mainly the same files. They could be merged in 
> the same po files to avoid duplication of translation effort
>     - using po files keeps the document structure itself (formatting, 
> links, ...). So the translator only has to focus on the translation of 
> the text itself
>     - translating is easier and can be shared easily between different 
> people
>     - easy access to translation statistic
>     - svn integration
> The cons:
>     - the translator doesn't have a global view of the file he is 
> working on
>     - new tools and new intermediate file format
>     - more complex doc generation process
> Anyway, I think that our translation workflow is too complex.
> Apart from the French translation (huge thanks, Lucien) and Spanish 
> which sees some interest and looks promising (Thanks and welcome 
> Luis), everything else is more or less dead.
> So anything that ease access to new translators is a win.
> We would like to have your feedback about the actual doc translation 
> process:
> - Do you think that using XML files for the translation is convenient? 
> Pros, Cons...

Using XML files for the translation is convenient for me ;
The pros : translator  has a global view of the file he is working on, 
tools for building the doc are present and operational
The cons : don't find any

> - Do you think that using .po files would help to keep track of 
> translation changes?

I don't know how .po files would help to keep track of translation changes.
I think this format works better for little sentences like httpd error 
messages ; it's not plain text, there are brackets, and if you need 
several lines for a message to translate, you get into problems.
Last, as said above, you have not a global view of the file you are 
working on ; it could be problematic when you need to see the context of 
the sentence you have to translate in order to understand it.

PS : as I understand, english source doc stay in XML format ; so these 
files have to be converted to .po
If it is the case, that wouldn't facilitate comparisons between english 
and translated files.

> - Do you think that using a web based interface for translation would 
> be a win?

A web based interface is useful for translation status global sight : 
Takashi's status page is fully appropriate 
for that

> Any thought?

Perhaps I'm too old to feel a need of change :-)

But I think our translation system is convenient enough

On the other hand , Luis has made an effort to make info more clear for 
new translators ; may be we must go further and write a translation 
tutorial including svn usage, new files translation and translation 
update, repos checkout, scripting for english source XML files change 
detection, ...?

> CJ
> [1]
> [2]
> [3]
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