Hans Meine hans_meine at gmx.net
Mon Jul 31 12:37:39 BST 2006

On Sunday 30 July 2006 10:58, Stephan Kulow wrote:
> Am Freitag, 28. Juli 2006 15:00 schrieb Hans Meine:
> > Maybe that's overly complex (it
> > would have to be translated, too...) and the existing manager already
> > contains some basic AI logic (I did not check).
> The manager already has weightening - your message has some suprises
> to me though. You combined "Check for New Mail" with "cnema" - why do you
> think that &e is better than &f as in &for?

Ingo already gave a good description.  I just feel that "Check" and "New" are 
the important words here and both are next-best represented with "e" after 
their initial letters.

I find hard-coding accels a poor solution though.  If it's done action-wise (I 
suppose so), then having a clash in *one* menu forces you to choose a worse 
accel for all other places where the action is plugged.

Furthermore, I fear that translators will translate strings with accelerators 
to ones with, and strings without to strings without.  Actually, both the 
original authors (or usability people) and the translators would have to 
carefully look at the menus, searching for clashes or bad accelerators.  That 
would have to be done on a regular basis, periodically, nobody forces you, 
and you actually have to *use* the program with all its menus a lot.  I don't 
think that works.

As an outcome, I think we agree that:

1) Hardcoded accels (the ampers&and way) are bad, because they can easily lead 
to clashes and the same holds for every translation.

2) Theroretically, there is room for improvement - the current manager cannot 
automatically find the best accelerator, which requires some kind of 

3) Solving 2) is made much more difficult by the need for i18n.

AFAICS, 2) could only be solved with either human or artifical intelligence.  
Simple AI methods could be to add some rules to the manager to prefer 
capitalized words, include language-specific black-lists ("for" etc.) or 
maybe prefer e.g. vowels.  Human intelligence could mean that programmers can 
include a set of preferable accelerators with action strings, which must be 
very easy and translateable. IMHO every approach not including accels in the 
gettext string would be overkill, e.g. "[cnema]Check for New Mail" or 
similar.  (No, I do not think that it looks nice. ;-/ )


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