Re: Helping with Indic [Re: AbiWord-2.1.0 Released!]

From: Ramanan Selvaratnam (
Date: Tue Dec 23 2003 - 07:40:29 EST

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    Hi Martin,

    On Mon, 2003-12-22 at 11:44, wrote:

    > We could really use help in two areas.
    > The first is straight forward. Translations of our our strings into Indic
    > Languages. This should be straight forward an English/Indic speaker. You
    > simply need to edit the *.po files and put in the translated UTF-8 codes.

    I will answer to the first point as the holiday season for many are
    coming fast.
    Translation in a useful (ie, coherent with the language in other
    related apps) manner is something I have been working on for some time.
    As I have finally built bridges across to the Tamil OOo team reusing
    many wordlists from there ;) should proove to be immensely helpful.
    Also I will make attempts to sync with Gnome-Offcie packages in such a
    way AbiWord is useful for a Tamil speaker.
    Only issue as there is an urgent need for Gnome official packages to
    meet some deadlines personally I would not attend to this for a month or
    so. But as more people join our young Gnome translation project (infact
    it starts today at Savannah as it is back online) I would be surprised
    if someone else picks the Abiword PO files.

    Thanks also to Marc Maurer's addional comments. They are noted.

    > The second place we need help is much harder.
    > Indic texts do not have a simple relationship between glyph size and
    > position.

    For this one I have initiated a discussion for to look into
    this as a project. Again you miss out the benefit of being a Gnome
    package as I understand they have priorities revolving around Gnome and
    KDE. Lets see.
    If not I would be more than happy to help Tomas get to grips with few
    languages at least.


    > If you know people who speak Tamil
    There are apparently 70 million. Yes I do know some :)

    > and who would like a free word
    > processor that does a good job on their language, please direct them to
    > us!

    Of course. I will be looking to promote it on liveCDs I am working on to
    those ones that seek to liberate Win32. Mugunth (CC'ed) might be

    > We really won't be able to support complex languages with their help.
    Yep. I hope your bugzilla will turn out to be useful as oppsed to some systems where some important bugs seem lost forever..

    > As to why we're not in gnome-cvs. Alan has already mostly answered that
    > question. In addition to his answers, we have a much nicer development
    > environment by running our own servers. We can ssh into the machine and
    > tweak things to our hearts content. We can easily maintain our own webpage
    > etc, etc.
    Thanks. I understand. You are not on Sourceforge instead your own
    machines. Nothing can beat that.

    > pango is really designed for GUI elements. It not suitable for all the
    > demands of a WYSIWYG Word Processor.

    Yes. a good explanation.

    > I hope this answers your questions and I haven't got something very wrong.
    > We would all love to see Indic language support. I hope we can at least
    > get Tamil translation for our strings.

    Best regards,


    > > On Fri, 19 Dec 2003, Ramanan Selvaratnam wrote:
    > >
    > >> ... how can one (note : I did not say I) be useful with the 'indic'
    > >> support that Martin tells me, needs help? What type of help?
    > >
    > > At a bare minimum run it, type a letter or essay and see if things work
    > > all right and if special characters are handled correctly.
    > > I vaguely recall that things can be difficult if you dont have all the
    > > right fonts. Abiword only uses fonts that it can print properly so that
    > > "What you see [onscreen, really] is what you get" when you print it out.
    > >
    > > Presumabley you have used some indic languages using Gedit, even checking
    > > if abiword works as consistantly as it does would be helpful.
    > >
    > >> Also I understand help is needed with localisig the Gtk2+ interface and
    > >> messages. Tell me more.
    > >
    > > I dont know anything that but I'm hoping my prompt reply will allow you do
    > > to something in the meantime. I expect Martin will reply with more detail
    > > when the sun rises in Australia.
    > >
    > > i'm not sure if there is much about Indic in bugzilla but searching the
    > > mailing lists archives should also give you ideas. I find a good way to
    > > search is to use google and restric it to search only the abisource
    > > website and then add the mailing list name and perhaps an additional
    > > keyword (indic, tamil, ...) should produce some useful results
    > > abiword-dev
    > >
    > > (On a less busy day I'd try looking for you but I'm all tired out by
    > > Christmas shopping)
    > >
    > >> Whay are you not in the Gnome CVS to benefit from the GTP (where I am
    > >> Tamil coordinator ... why so little is localised is a long story)
    > >
    > > I suppose abiword could set something up to sync its PO files with a
    > > repository in Gnome CVS. Historically Abiword was started as a commercial
    > > (but open source) venture and it suited them better to have their own
    > > systems for most things and it is still very useful, personally I find the
    > > Abiword Bugzilla much more managable than Gnome because it is so much more
    > > focused and much smaller.
    > > To the best of my knowledge the only reason we dont use Gnome CVS is that
    > > historically we have not used Gnome CVS and there has not yet been any
    > > huge reason or even desire to switch but if there were good reasons and it
    > > was worth effort it may well happen.
    > >
    > >> All the best,
    > >> Ramanan, UK
    > >
    > > Hope that helps
    > >
    > > Sincerely
    > >
    > > Alan Horkan
    > >
    > >

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