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Re: New projects opened

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
Gerard Meijssen wrote:
> Hoi,
> At translatewiki.net many of the messages include information about the
> context. The coverage of this information has been improving steadily.
Perfectly true. I would emphasize the word "improving" though;
as there is quite a bit still to "improve" there. (most glaringly in
the case of one-word messages, where there is no idea if the
word is supposed to be a verb or a noun or something completely
different -- and similar cases)


> This
> information is not available when messages are localised on the local wiki.
>  

While this is true in the absolute; in view of what I wrote above,
I am unsure if *all* of the problems are attributable to lack of
contextual information that is provided on the translatewiki site.


Yours,

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen




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Re: New projects opened

Ole Palnatoke Andersen
In reply to this post by Svip
On Fri, Aug 21, 2009 at 7:36 AM, Svip<[hidden email]> wrote:
...
> The Danish Wikipedia itself is in a pretty bad state to.  Too many
> articles on it are close to laughable, and you can often find better
> articles on Danish subjects on the English Wikipedia than the Danish
> one.

I assume that your contributions have been made under another username
or anonymously, as I do not recall seeing anything from Bruger:Svip.

-Palnatoke


--
http://palnatoke.org * Ole Palnatoke Andersen, Copenhagen, DK
* CV: http://palnatoke.org/CV.doc *
h:+45 61 91 48 88 m:+45 22 93 45 88

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Re: New projects opened

M. Williamson
In reply to this post by Gregory Maxwell
Gregory, I would love to see current data of that type. I - and
probably many others - would be extremely grateful if you were to
publish it.

Mark


On Thu, Aug 20, 2009 at 10:07 PM, Gregory Maxwell<[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Thu, Aug 20, 2009 at 9:22 PM, Lars Aronsson<[hidden email]> wrote:
>> Kaare Olsen wrote:
>>
>>> What I think is the primary reason for the Danish Wikipedia
>>> being much smaller than the "neighbouring" languages is that
>>> Danes generally are internationally minded and pride themselves
>>> on being good at English - people may simply prefer to use/edit
>>> Wikipedia in that language (even I did that when first attracted
>>> to Wikipedia).
>>
>> I find it hard to believe that this would be a major difference
>> between Denmark and Sweden. But it would be really interesting if
>> we could somehow trace the use of the English Wikipedia to users
>> of various mother tongues (for Northern Europe, country or IP
>> address range might be a good enough approximation for mother
>> tongue).  Perhaps Swedish users stay on the Swedish Wikipedia to
>> read about sports, but go to the English to read about music.
>>
>> For each IP address range, we could (well, Domas could) analyze
>> which language of Wikipedia those users primarily go to.  If users
>> from 130.236.xxx.yyy mostly visit the English and Swedish
>> Wikipedia, we can assume that it constitutes a Swedish-speaking
>> community.  If no conclusive pattern is shown on the /16 (class B)
>> range, each /24 (class C) net can be analyzed individually.
>
> I published a very simple GEO vs Project readership report a couple of
> years back. I could dig up the data, but it's old now.  It's not
> terribly hard to run, and the old script should still work.
>
>
> It was generally the case that for much of the world English Wikipedia
> was accessed Wikipedia by readers with roughly comparable frequency to
> the 'expected' language, and in some cases far more so… though there
> were some significant exceptions: For example the Italians stuck to
> itwiki and the Japanese stuck to jawiki.  Much of Europe was more
> mixed.
>
>
> There is also this old data:
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Edits_by_project_and_country_of_origin
>
>
> How many messages need to be translated to make mediawiki basically
> usable?  My own belief was that you only needed a few dozens to make
> the software basically usable, at least enough to bootstrap usage.
>
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Re: New projects opened

dex2000
In reply to this post by Svip
The merits of localization aside, making localization for the Danish Wiki a
reason for its lagging behind the other Nordic Wikis is really beside the
point. As an old-timer on da:, I can confirm that meeting untranslated or
bad messages on the Danish Wikipedia is a very unusual experience.

For the record, the Danish Wikipedia is doing fine. I¨m sure that it¨s level
of "ridiculous articles" is in no way  different from any other Wikipedia. A
Danish newspaper recently made an informal comparison between the "official"
encyclopedia "Den store danske" on the internet and the Danish Wikipedia,
where Wikipedia came out on top.

I recommend anybody really concerned about the state of the Danish language
and/or the state of the Danish Wikipedia to write and correct articles. It
will pay off better than doing localization.

Allow me to suggest that some explanation for the lag in article numbers and
contributors is the fact that Danish summers are more sunny and winters less
severe than is the case in our northern neighbourhood :-) .

/Sir48-Thyge

-----Oprindelig meddelelse-----
Fra: [hidden email]
[mailto:[hidden email]]Pa vegne af Svip
Sendt: 21. august 2009 07:08
Til: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List
Emne: Re: [Foundation-l] New projects opened


2009/8/21 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <[hidden email]>:

> Gerard Meijssen wrote:
>> Hoi,
>> Given that on Februari first 96.07% of the most used messages were
>> localised, it is clear that some of the most used messages were not even
>> localised. Consequently your puh puh reaction that only the rare messages
>> are affected is not correct.
>>
> Not all of the messages which are not included in "most used"
> are rare, and not all messages that are in the "most used"
> messages pile are ones that beginning editors are bound to
> encounter.
>
> So I do think Kaare is spot on to suggest it is an extraordinary
> claim that lack of localizations is driving away Danish editors,
> and as such requires extraordinary proof! Have there been
> beginning Danish wiki-editors complaining about the poor
> localization level?

I am would not claim myself to be a "beginning Danish wiki-editor",
but I am certainly complaining about the localisation of the Danish
MediaWiki.  If it wasn't obvious spelling mistakes, it was often odd
direct translations from English, without much consideration of
context.

If I were a beginning Danish wiki-editor, I would see this as
unprofessional - something which I already do in my current position -
and as a result, probably leave, or contribute less than I had
intended.

It's unfortunate to see less and less Danes taking Danish serious
enough, with English's slow integration into the Danish language.
Many things can be translated, but not necessarily everything should.

It's a balance.

/Svip

Furthermore, I think Carthage must be destroyed.

> Yours,
>
> Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
>
>
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Re: New projects opened

Svip
In reply to this post by Ole Palnatoke Andersen
2009/8/21 Ole Palnatoke Andersen <[hidden email]>:
> I assume that your contributions have been made under another username
> or anonymously, as I do not recall seeing anything from Bruger:Svip.

My username on all Wikimedia wikis is "Svippong".  Svip was unfortunately taken.

2009/8/21 dex2000 <[hidden email]>:
> The merits of localization aside, making localization for the Danish Wiki a
> reason for its lagging behind the other Nordic Wikis is really beside the
> point. As an old-timer on da:, I can confirm that meeting untranslated or
> bad messages on the Danish Wikipedia is a very unusual experience.

Well, I did some time ago run into a very strange writing "the bot"
(which translated as "botten", which made it make even less sense if
it hadn't been translated) and a word like "start" was misspelt as
"stard".

> For the record, the Danish Wikipedia is doing fine. I¨m sure that it¨s level
> of "ridiculous articles" is in no way  different from any other Wikipedia. A
> Danish newspaper recently made an informal comparison between the "official"
> encyclopedia "Den store danske" on the internet and the Danish Wikipedia,
> where Wikipedia came out on top.

While I realise, the specific chosen articles in that article did
relatively fine, the Danish Wikipedia is lagging in areas where it
could be a lot better.  Articles about Danish geography and famous
writers is severely lagging.

But just because there are a lot of stubs is not the real concern.  I
remember reading an article on Skagen on the dawiki, and the article
explicit said that in 5400 years, the sands around it would have
reached Sweden.  This is obviously a single example, but unfortunately
it is not extraordinary.

> I recommend anybody really concerned about the state of the Danish language
> and/or the state of the Danish Wikipedia to write and correct articles. It
> will pay off better than doing localization.
>
> Allow me to suggest that some explanation for the lag in article numbers and
> contributors is the fact that Danish summers are more sunny and winters less
> severe than is the case in our northern neighbourhood :-) .

From a linguistic point of view, Danish is different in treatment
compared to Icelandic, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish.  The latter
four get a lot of localisation treatment themselves, such as having
foreign words and loanwords being corrected for their respective
lexicon.

Danish, however, simply takes the original loanword and only in rare
cases changes its writing.  The influence of English in Danish should
thus be obvious to anyone speaking the language.  As a result, it is
common for Danes at times simply to revert entirely to Danish, and as
a result, I believe that Danes are in a larger aspect contributing to
enwiki than dawiki.

Which is most unfortunate.

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Re: New projects opened

Anders Wennersten
When I analyze different language version I have developed a small model
dividing up the versions into being in one out of three development phases
-The buildup phase where mostly just more articles are added. Most of
the bigger versions have left this phase but many newer one are still in
this. I see it as a sign of failure on these, when the number of access
to the version decrease on a yearly base, look at the sicilian, faroese
or lombardian versions. Fewer accesses will mens less interest, fewer
newer editor and probably decreasing value and quality that could very
well be a sign bad circle making it successively worse
-The consolidating phase, where most major versions are today (except en
and de). Here quality, content and seriousness will be in focus. If we
fail here we will no attract new editors and/or seniors ("we do not want
to contribute to something too amateurish"). Perhaps the Danish version
is a good example of the problems not succeeding in this phase. On the
Swedish version we have for  a year and a half  have had focus on
quality and this summer we actually see very promising figures, traffic
increasing +20% on a yearly baser, record numbers of new articles, many
new "older" contributers. Perhaps we have passed  the mid-life crises?
-The mature phase where I see only en and de being, and where focus is
content sources etc. here I see a risk of us being too elitistic and
discouraging younger contributers. Working very much with iw linking I
actually am starting to find many articles missing on de:wp nowadays,
mostly in "semi-serious" areas like comicstrip heroes etc. It could be a
warning sign and a risk that we frighten away our original core of young
enthusiasts to other wikis which in the long run could become
competitors to de:wp.

 Anders

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Re: New projects opened

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
In reply to this post by dex2000
dex2000 wrote:
>
> Allow me to suggest that some explanation for the lag in article numbers and
> contributors is the fact that Danish summers are more sunny and winters less
> severe than is the case in our northern neighbourhood :-) .
>
>  

Well, that explanation would have the collateral benefit that we
could blame the problems of the English Wikipedias waning
growth on global warming. ;-D

(N. B. We haven't really had a severe winter here in Finland, that
I remember, in at least half a decade. Though I suppose old habits,
such as communal barn-raising, are still alive here, and are clear
remnants of cultural adaptation to the harsh conditions in these
latitudes.)


Yours,

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen


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Re: New projects opened

Kåre Thor Olsen
In reply to this post by Gerard Meijssen-3
On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 06:32:47 +0200
Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Given that on Februari first 96.07% of the most used messages were
> localised, it is clear that some of the most used messages were not
> even localised. Consequently your puh puh reaction that only the rare
> messages are affected is not correct.

Does your statistics include local translations?  No?

Again, I'm an actual user of the Danish language Wikipedia.  I'm not
making it up when I say that I rarely run into something untranslated.
If I do run into something untranslated, I generally fix it, and this
most commonly happens locally as I can't wait for the translations to
arrive by other means (and yes, I know the delay is not your fault).

--
Regards, Kaare

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Re: New projects opened

Gerard Meijssen-3
Hoi,
The only relevant local localisations are the ones that provide specific
information about that project. All the other localisations are suspect
because they often no longer reflect the original message. Regularly
messages change their text, add parameters, are using new
internationalisation features and without the FUZZY mechanism employed at
translatewiki.net there is no way that you are even aware of this.

Local localisations do not deserve consideration and the only reason why
they should not have been removed and outlawed is that we do not have a
mechanism yet to bring you new localisations in a timely manner. When the
LocalisationUpdate extension is finally activated for all the wikis of the
Wikimedia Foundation there is no longer a valid reason to localise locally
for standard messages.

Translatewiki.net allows you to proof read your localisations, so I urge you
to work on the quality of your localisations and do it where this effort
makes the biggest difference.
Thanks,
      GerardM

2009/8/21 Kaare Olsen <[hidden email]>

> On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 06:32:47 +0200
> Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Given that on Februari first 96.07% of the most used messages were
> > localised, it is clear that some of the most used messages were not
> > even localised. Consequently your puh puh reaction that only the rare
> > messages are affected is not correct.
>
> Does your statistics include local translations?  No?
>
> Again, I'm an actual user of the Danish language Wikipedia.  I'm not
> making it up when I say that I rarely run into something untranslated.
> If I do run into something untranslated, I generally fix it, and this
> most commonly happens locally as I can't wait for the translations to
> arrive by other means (and yes, I know the delay is not your fault).
>
> --
> Regards, Kaare
>
> _______________________________________________
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>
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Re: New projects opened

Svip
In reply to this post by Kåre Thor Olsen
2009/8/21 Kaare Olsen <[hidden email]>:

> On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 06:32:47 +0200
> Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Given that on Februari first 96.07% of the most used messages were
>> localised, it is clear that some of the most used messages were not
>> even localised. Consequently your puh puh reaction that only the rare
>> messages are affected is not correct.
>
> Does your statistics include local translations?  No?
>
> Again, I'm an actual user of the Danish language Wikipedia.  I'm not
> making it up when I say that I rarely run into something untranslated.
> If I do run into something untranslated, I generally fix it, and this
> most commonly happens locally as I can't wait for the translations to
> arrive by other means (and yes, I know the delay is not your fault).

I much appreciate the effort.  And it is possible that the Danish
localisation is in better shape than last time I checked (which was a
little over a year ago).

I'd love if the Danish Wikipedia was close or en par with the English
Wikipedia.  Not in quantity, but in quality.  At least on the Danish
specific articles.  Unfortunately, there is a lack of motivation from
potential Danish editors (like myself).

I guess I am too busy maintaining my own wiki as well.  Maybe a choice
to attract editors would be similar to that of the Swedish and
Norwegian wikis.  That, and I'd like to see more appreciation of the
Danish language from the Danes themselves.  I hear Dutch is under the
same criticism from the Dutch themselves.

\\Svip

> --
> Regards, Kaare
>
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Re: New projects opened

Kåre Thor Olsen
In reply to this post by Svip
On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 07:08:08 +0200
Svip <[hidden email]> wrote:

> > So I do think Kaare is spot on to suggest it is an extraordinary
> > claim that lack of localizations is driving away Danish editors,
> > and as such requires extraordinary proof! Have there been
> > beginning Danish wiki-editors complaining about the poor
> > localization level?
>
> I am would not claim myself to be a "beginning Danish wiki-editor",
> but I am certainly complaining about the localisation of the Danish
> MediaWiki.  If it wasn't obvious spelling mistakes, it was often odd
> direct translations from English, without much consideration of
> context.

Have these been fixed?  Could you give examples?  A year or two ago it
turned out that someone had contributed interface translations using
Google Translate (or similar).  I hope those were fixed, but you may
have run into them when they first appeared, or into messages not yet
fixed.

Besides, interface translations are only as good as their translators.  
As with Wikipedia itself, there's no control over who gets to contribute,
and there aren't necessarily people available, or willing, to proof-read.  
As you know, the best way to get something fixed is to contribute
yourself - this is how the free "something" world works.
 
> If I were a beginning Danish wiki-editor, I would see this as
> unprofessional - something which I already do in my current position -
> and as a result, probably leave, or contribute less than I had
> intended.

Are there any live examples of this in the Danish language Wikipedia?
If so, please point them out so they can be fixed (I looked through
your local contributions without finding any pointers to such mistakes
- did you fix it in Translatewiki?).
 
> It's unfortunate to see less and less Danes taking Danish serious
> enough, with English's slow integration into the Danish language.

Nod.

> Many things can be translated, but not necessarily everything should.

The last point is a matter of opinion which varies wildly.  There's
likely translations which have been adopted in the Danish language
Wikipedia, and may seem odd to less frequent contributors until they
get used to see a Danish word instead of the usual English one.
 
> It's a balance.

Indeed.

--
Regards, Kaare

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Re: New projects opened

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
In reply to this post by Svip
Svip wrote:
>
> I guess I am too busy maintaining my own wiki as well.  Maybe a choice
> to attract editors would be similar to that of the Swedish and
> Norwegian wikis.  That, and I'd like to see more appreciation of the
> Danish language from the Danes themselves.  I hear Dutch is under the
> same criticism from the Dutch themselves.
>
>  

This is interesting. My understanding is that even compared
to the Danes, the Dutch are hugely internationally minded.

In Science Fiction fandom circles I have heard of an "8person
rule of thumb" (though I admit the rule may hive more general
application within Dutch society) - whereby within spoken
communication situations, if there is one native English speaker
present, there have to be at least 8Dutch speakers present,
before even the most private comments by the Dutch speakers
will be made in Dutch.

It would be a genuinely useful data point to see how the Dutch
language wikipedia compares to any possible wikipedias of
similar number of native speakers in terms of breadth and
size, where the languages compared against do not have this
strong tradition of internationalism.


Yours,

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen


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Re: New projects opened

Gerard Meijssen-3
Hoi,
I know that the information provided by Erik Zachte will provide ample
information about that ....
Thanks,
     Geard

2009/8/21 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <[hidden email]>

> Svip wrote:
> >
> > I guess I am too busy maintaining my own wiki as well.  Maybe a choice
> > to attract editors would be similar to that of the Swedish and
> > Norwegian wikis.  That, and I'd like to see more appreciation of the
> > Danish language from the Danes themselves.  I hear Dutch is under the
> > same criticism from the Dutch themselves.
> >
> >
>
> This is interesting. My understanding is that even compared
> to the Danes, the Dutch are hugely internationally minded.
>
> In Science Fiction fandom circles I have heard of an "8person
> rule of thumb" (though I admit the rule may hive more general
> application within Dutch society) - whereby within spoken
> communication situations, if there is one native English speaker
> present, there have to be at least 8Dutch speakers present,
> before even the most private comments by the Dutch speakers
> will be made in Dutch.
>
> It would be a genuinely useful data point to see how the Dutch
> language wikipedia compares to any possible wikipedias of
> similar number of native speakers in terms of breadth and
> size, where the languages compared against do not have this
> strong tradition of internationalism.
>
>
> Yours,
>
> Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
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> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
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Re: New projects opened

Gerard Meijssen-3
..
I answered too quickly ... information in his upcoming Wikimania
presentation ....
Thanks,
      Gerard

2009/8/21 Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]>

> Hoi,
> I know that the information provided by Erik Zachte will provide ample
> information about that ....
> Thanks,
>      Geard
>
> 2009/8/21 Jussi-Ville Heiskanen <[hidden email]>
>
>> Svip wrote:
>>
>> >
>> > I guess I am too busy maintaining my own wiki as well.  Maybe a choice
>> > to attract editors would be similar to that of the Swedish and
>> > Norwegian wikis.  That, and I'd like to see more appreciation of the
>> > Danish language from the Danes themselves.  I hear Dutch is under the
>> > same criticism from the Dutch themselves.
>> >
>> >
>>
>> This is interesting. My understanding is that even compared
>> to the Danes, the Dutch are hugely internationally minded.
>>
>> In Science Fiction fandom circles I have heard of an "8person
>> rule of thumb" (though I admit the rule may hive more general
>> application within Dutch society) - whereby within spoken
>> communication situations, if there is one native English speaker
>> present, there have to be at least 8Dutch speakers present,
>> before even the most private comments by the Dutch speakers
>> will be made in Dutch.
>>
>> It would be a genuinely useful data point to see how the Dutch
>> language wikipedia compares to any possible wikipedias of
>> similar number of native speakers in terms of breadth and
>> size, where the languages compared against do not have this
>> strong tradition of internationalism.
>>
>>
>> Yours,
>>
>> Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> foundation-l mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>>
>
>
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Re: New projects opened

Michael Snow-3
In reply to this post by Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
Jussi-Ville Heiskanen wrote:

> Svip wrote:
>  
>> I guess I am too busy maintaining my own wiki as well.  Maybe a choice
>> to attract editors would be similar to that of the Swedish and
>> Norwegian wikis.  That, and I'd like to see more appreciation of the
>> Danish language from the Danes themselves.  I hear Dutch is under the
>> same criticism from the Dutch themselves.
>>    
> This is interesting. My understanding is that even compared
> to the Danes, the Dutch are hugely internationally minded.
>
> In Science Fiction fandom circles I have heard of an "8person
> rule of thumb" (though I admit the rule may hive more general
> application within Dutch society) - whereby within spoken
> communication situations, if there is one native English speaker
> present, there have to be at least 8Dutch speakers present,
> before even the most private comments by the Dutch speakers
> will be made in Dutch.
>  
I can speak from a bit of personal experience here. Between the Dutch
chapter, Jan-Bart, and people on the technical team like Mark and Roan,
the Dutch were well represented at the meetings in Berlin in April. At
one point I decided to invade a table full of Dutch speakers, maybe not
eight but close to that number, partly just to see what would happen.
(Personally, despite speaking both German and English, and Dutch
occupying a linguistic space vaguely between the two, I can barely make
out the occasional word in spoken Dutch, although I have a little bit
more ability to comprehend it when reading.) Anyway, everyone was quite
willing to switch over to English without any trouble, although some
Dutch was still used occasionally for conversations I wasn't directly
involved in.

For the English language, I think the underlying problem is a bit
different. Often we native English speakers never really learn any other
language, and by reason of not learning how things are framed in
comparison, end up neglecting the quality of our own language, though we
use it constantly.

--Michael Snow

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Re: New projects opened

Kåre Thor Olsen
In reply to this post by Gerard Meijssen-3
On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 18:33:34 +0200
Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> The only relevant local localisations are the ones that provide
> specific information about that project. All the other localisations
> are suspect because they often no longer reflect the original
> message. Regularly messages change their text, add parameters, are
> using new internationalisation features and without the FUZZY
> mechanism employed at translatewiki.net there is no way that you are
> even aware of this.

As long at a message isn't wrong people primarily working on the
encyclopedia, rather than primarily translating the interface, won't
care much about such changes.  Since most people are introduced to
MediaWiki through Wikipedia their primary project likely remains
writing the encyclopedia.

> Local localisations do not deserve consideration and the only reason
> why they should not have been removed and outlawed is that we do not
> have a mechanism yet to bring you new localisations in a timely
> manner.

That's a pretty patronising statement, invalidating people's work
because it isn't contributed to your project.

> When the LocalisationUpdate extension is finally activated
> for all the wikis of the Wikimedia Foundation there is no longer a
> valid reason to localise locally for standard messages.

Believe it or not, I'm looking forward to it.  This current limbo has
at times been a major annoyance, with peculiar translations arriving
out of the blue and not one single place to fix them - hence, for better
or for worse, the local translations.

> Translatewiki.net allows you to proof read your localisations, so I
> urge you to work on the quality of your localisations and do it where
> this effort makes the biggest difference.

Until the LocalisationUpdate extension is in place, it mostly creates a
lot of extra work to smallish communities to maintain a localisation.  

When the extension is enabled I'll make sure to do my interface
translations at Translatewiki; there's nothing wrong with the idea.

--
Regards, Kaare

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Re: New projects opened

Kåre Thor Olsen
In reply to this post by Svip
On Fri, 21 Aug 2009 18:35:03 +0200
Svip <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I much appreciate the effort.  And it is possible that the Danish
> localisation is in better shape than last time I checked (which was a
> little over a year ago).

I know several people have worked on it, on and off, but proof-reading
should certainly be a requirement before messages are going live.  This
should weed out the cases of non-native speakers contributing machine
translations.
 
> I'd love if the Danish Wikipedia was close or en par with the English
> Wikipedia.  Not in quantity, but in quality.  At least on the Danish
> specific articles.  Unfortunately, there is a lack of motivation from
> potential Danish editors (like myself).
[...]

My motivation was the opposite.  It was the low quality back in the day
which made me move to the Danish language Wikipedia.  Lots and lots of
sub stubs had been importet from a similar project, a few people were
trying to rewrite history, and there were not enough editors to fight
vandalism.

Speaking of quality, I tend to have more hits than misses in the German
language Wikipedia compared to the English one, when I'm looking at
subjects a bit outside the mainstream (inside mainstream it seems equal).

--
Regards, Kaare

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Re: New projects opened

David Gerard-2
In reply to this post by Michael Snow-3
2009/8/21 Michael Snow <[hidden email]>:

> I can speak from a bit of personal experience here. Between the Dutch
> chapter, Jan-Bart, and people on the technical team like Mark and Roan,
> the Dutch were well represented at the meetings in Berlin in April. At
> one point I decided to invade a table full of Dutch speakers, maybe not
> eight but close to that number, partly just to see what would happen.
> (Personally, despite speaking both German and English, and Dutch
> occupying a linguistic space vaguely between the two, I can barely make
> out the occasional word in spoken Dutch, although I have a little bit
> more ability to comprehend it when reading.) Anyway, everyone was quite
> willing to switch over to English without any trouble, although some
> Dutch was still used occasionally for conversations I wasn't directly
> involved in.


I'm now thinking of a friend who emigrated to the Netherlands from
Australia, and has terrible trouble getting people to speak to him in
Dutch rather than English, even when he asks them to. They hear his
accent and switch into English.


> For the English language, I think the underlying problem is a bit
> different. Often we native English speakers never really learn any other
> language, and by reason of not learning how things are framed in
> comparison, end up neglecting the quality of our own language, though we
> use it constantly.


Speaking English a bit is easy, speaking it really well is a bit more
work. Many native speakers don't realise how much work, or that they
have to work at it too.

(What's the next lingua franca going to be? When?)


- d.

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Re: New projects opened

Bod Notbod
On Fri, Aug 21, 2009 at 11:59 PM, David Gerard<[hidden email]> wrote:

> (What's the next lingua franca going to be? When?)

It would have been Chinese if you could get a workable keyboard.

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Re: New projects opened

M. Williamson
I disagree. All languages that have had a chance of becoming world
lingua francas - English, French, perhaps Spanish, are some recent
examples - were not only the languages of economic or political
powers, they were also the languages of vast colonial empires.

Is it likely that English would be the second working language of
India without India's colonial past? Would French be the official
language of dozens of African countries if they had never been ruled
over by France? Chinese has a very large speaker population but the
number of speakers outside of the Han ethnic group and/or the PRC is
negligible. Almost all non-Han speakers of Chinese are ethnic
minorities in the PRC, virtually all Chinese speaking people outside
of the PRC are ethnic Chinese. Is this because Chinese is difficult to
type (which it isn't, by the way, on modern computers)? Highly
unlikely. People don't choose to learn or not learn languages because
of the perceived ease of typing or even the perceived difficulty of
learning that particular language, they do it because of the perceived
level of prestige and economic and political power it will bring them.

What could the motivations be for an aspiring professional in for
example Congo be to learn Chinese? There are few and almost all of
them are related to business dealings with China.

Hindi is in a similar position - it has quite a large number of
diaspora speakers, but outside of a single country and/or national
origin, it has virtually no reach.

Mark

On Sat, Aug 22, 2009 at 12:39 PM, Bod Notbod<[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Fri, Aug 21, 2009 at 11:59 PM, David Gerard<[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> (What's the next lingua franca going to be? When?)
>
> It would have been Chinese if you could get a workable keyboard.
>
> _______________________________________________
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