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Re: Not happy at all


El ds 25 de 12 de 2010 a les 00:07 +0200, en/na Khaled Hosny va
> On Fri, Dec 24, 2010 at 09:48:11AM +0100, lafeber-dumoleyn2 wrote:
> > Op 22-12-10 21:35, Khaled Hosny schreef:
> > >On Wed, Dec 22, 2010 at 06:51:15PM +0100, Ask Hjorth Larsen wrote:
> > >>My opinion on what we need technically:
> > >>
> > >>Fuzzy matching and a word-wise po-file diffing utility.
> > >Lunchpad developers seem not to think that translators effort and
> > >resources is worthy saving, this is not the first time this issue is
> > >brought up. All what I got last time was some, more time consuming,
> > >workarounds, so I just gave up; I only start translating just before the
> > >translation deadline even if it means some translations might not make
> > >it into the release, as I value my, very limited, time and resources.
> > >
> > >Regards,
> > >  Khaled
> > >
> > Hello Khaled,
> > I think what you say here is unfair towards all those people who
> > work very hard behind the scenes.
> > We should show some respect.
> I don't think criticizing developers for failing to address what I (and
> others as it seems) consider a critical issue is showing disrespect.
> Just because we are volunteers (though I don't think launchpad
> developers are) does not put us above criticism. If someone does not
> like my criticism he can just ignore it, if receiving such criticism
> feels so bad to him he can as well stop doing that work and move to
> something else that he don't receive criticism for (I often do myself).

Hi Khaled,

I've meant to reply to this thread for a while, but Christmas holidays
got in the way. I apologise for the delay.

I agree with most of what you are saying here. Criticism, providing
alternative views and discussion are good for the health of any project,
and in fact, I encourage everyone to do this, as often happens in this
list. This is one of the main reasons we have public communication
channels: to give anyone the opportunity to voice concerns, discuss them
and eventually come up with consensus and a fix.

That said, there are two other important points I believe go hand in
hand with voicing criticism:

Respect. It is completely valid to disagree with and to criticize the
features (or lack of in some cases) of the tools we use for translation,
as well as any other aspect concerning the translations or wider Ubuntu
community. However, it is equally important to bear in mind the tone of
any remarks and to try keep a respectful communication. Criticism is
much more effective and goes a long way when it does not offend people.

Stating that Launchpad developers do not care about translators is a
personal assumption that I do not share, and I believe is not helpful in
this discussion.

Commitment. As in many other Open Source projects, with the freedom of
raising concerns comes also the responsibility of doing something about
it. Launchpad is Open Source, and if something is not working for
someone, there is always the possibility to actively work towards fixing
it. You are saying you are not interested in Launchpad development,
which is absolutely fine. But if someone finds this is a critical enough
feature that is lacking, there are many ways to contribute to a fix. The
most obvious one is with code contributions (here are some pointers [1]
[2] [3]) but I realize that not everyone has got coding skills to look
into that. However, there are other ways: starting a dedicated thread
addressing some of the issues discussed previously [4] [5], proposing a
UDS session, starting a wiki page with a spec so that the Launchpad team
can start with something concrete, asking a friend with coding skills to
look into it, propose it e.g. for a Google Summer of Code Project, etc.
These are just some of the ways I can think of.

There is just so much a paid or volunteer developer can do given the
available time and the amount of things to do. There are always new
feature requests, and they are always very important to those reporting
them. They can not be all always addressed, let alone all at the same
time, which is why they need to be prioritised.

You find that fuzzy matching support is important, but other people find
that supporting translator comments is much more important. These are
big features, which require both a non trivial amount of developer time,
so there is the need to strike a balance between what can be done and
when it can be done.

Just to illustrate this, and linking to Kenneth's reply this morning, in
the past we've asked translators on which features they'd like Launchpad
Translations developers to work on. Given this feedback, the developers
have been working on better upstream integration, which was the top
priority expressed by the survey participants. This is a huge feature,
which adding up the regular maintenance work (e.g. bug fixing, release
procedures, etc.) takes a lot of time to complete, so it's not that
developers are ignoring requests, it's simply that we have to be
realistic and handle one feature at a time.

Here is the link to the summary with that feedback:


Since then, the process for requesting features has changed a bit, so do
not take this list as something that will be addressed in order now.
When upstream integration is finished, we might need to reevaluate the

I hope this provides an insight to the current development work in
Launchpad and helps in clearing up any misunderstanding.

> In the other hand, I may feel that forcing me to use an inefficient tool
> that wasts my time is not showing respect to my volunteer work (that
> Canonical also forced me to license under a week copyleft license so
> they can use it in commercial projects I don't know about, something I
> would not have done if I had more choice). Remind you, I'm not
> interested in Launchpad or Rosetta or whatever, my only interest is to
> translate a distribution that I use.
> Regards,
>  Khaled


[1] https://dev.launchpad.net/
[2] https://wiki.ubuntu.com/MeetingLogs/devweek1001/LPTranslate
[3] https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbuntuDeveloperWeek/Sessions/LaunchpadTranslationsUnderTheHood
[4] https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-translators/2010-April/003473.html
[5] https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-translators/2010-April/003476.html

David Planella
Ubuntu Translations Coordinator
www.ubuntu.com / www.davidplanella.wordpress.com
www.identi.ca/dplanella / www.twitter.com/dplanella

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