[pacman-dev] Man page translations

Mario Blättermann mario.blaettermann at gmail.com
Mon Mar 25 18:02:18 UTC 2019


I've just read at [1] that nobody is working on man page translations for
Pacman, but translations would be welcome anyway. That's great, because
there are only a few developers who are really willing to consider
localized man pages as an important part of a good user experience. I've
already translated the current man pages based on the latest release into
German, and they are currently maintained in the manpages-de project [2].

But this external approach has a few disadvantages: There's some delay
between upstream release of the packages where we get the original man
pages from, then translation, release of a tarball and finally packaging
for the currently upported distributions (Archlinux and Debian unstable,
support for Mageia is under construction). Moreover, we translate only into
*one* language... It would be better to maintain the localized manpages in
Pacman's git repo itself.

We don't have that many options to setup i18n for man pages. In my opinion
po4a [3] is the best software which can handle such things. We use it also
in the manpages-de project. Well, we use it there with Groff and Mdoc, but
it is also able to work with Asciidoc (says the documentation, I haven't
tested it).

I could setup a po4a toolchain in Pacman which takes the asciidoc files,
puts the contents in pot templates and merges then the resuting po files
back to the asciidoc source format. I've also some basic experience with
Meson, but I'm afraid I won't be able to get it working with the GNU
Autotools. The translations itself can be maintained at Transifex, as
usual, but of course in separate templates for each asiidoc source file.

What do you think about this idea? If it's OK for you, then I need some
playground for my changes. I consider to fork the git repo at Github.
@Allan, it is OK to fork your personal repo, or should I use the main repo
at git.archlinux.org? Processing merge requests is maybe easier within

[1] https://www.archlinux.org/pacman/translation-help.html
[2] https://salsa.debian.org/manpages-de-team/manpages-de

Best Regards,

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