Re: A Few Standard Folders [Re: Structure in $HOME]

On Mon, 2003-01-13 at 15:09, ERDI Gergo wrote:
> On Mon, 13 Jan 2003, John McCutchan wrote:
> > Also, consistency with non-gnome apps would terrible, if nautilus
> > calls "~/Video Games" "~/Video Juego"s and the user loads up a 
> > terminal or a non-gnome app they won't know what "~/Video Games" is.
> I don't understand the whole issue here. I18n applies to cases where the
> actual l10n is meaningful -- i.e. for system-wide stuff. Now, tell me what
> kind of (schizophrenic, perhaps?) person would want to have a
> locale-dependant _home directory_? If you are, say, Hungarian, you just
> create a 'Videˇk' directory in your $HOME (or have it created for
> you by some kind of 'Welcome to GNOME' script), and update GConf to
> register that your video files go to ~/Videˇk instead of ~/Videos.

So I want to preface this by saying that I'm not trying to suggest
solutions, I'm trying to brainstorm.

Localisation is relevant any time we are including text in our software
that is presented to the user. If we include some knowledge of standard
folders in a GNOME install, and consequently textual folder names,
localisation becomes relevant. The ideal to reach for is to work exactly
how the computer would work if the software was developed specifically
for that particular language. 

If I were developing a Hungarian desktop environment, and I wanted to
save movies to a default location (Documents would be better, but sadly,
I don't know Hungarian ;-), I would use ~/Videˇk. Therefore, in an ideal
localisation of Hungarian, when I log into my system the default
location for saving movies should be ~/Videˇk. I should not have to go
set a bunch of GConf keys...I've already said that I want my language to
be Hungarian and it should be.

So clearly there are some complicating factors that make things
non-ideal. The most interesting to me reflect not technical hurdles (of
which there are many, particularly with the filesystem) but fundamental
design questions. 

How do we handle user's who like to login using both English and
Hungarian? Will it be confusing to them if there's a "~/Video" folder
when they're logged in in English, but "~/Videˇk" when they log in with
Hungarian? (I suspect most programmer's gut reaction is "yes", because
we elevate filesystem stuff as being somehow special, in our control,
etc, but I think the answer for the person you meet on the street is

Do we have a communication problem if we localise, e.g., theme names?
Lets say person A's primary language is Hungarian, but they also speak
some English. They use their computer in Hungarian, but they want to
discuss the pros and cons of themes on English. But how will
they be able to express the themes they are describing since the names
they know are in Hungarian?

etc etc

Anyway, I would caution people to avoid putting the filesystem on a
pedestal when you're thinking about issues like localisation. Text in
folder names on the filesystem is not so very different from, say, text
in the category names on the Applications menu (if you want to get
technical, they're actually the same since the Applications menu is just
read off an applications:/// URI ;-)


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