Translations: are we supposed to translate something like: desktop!background

Asked by Enrico Rosina


I helped for some translations of Ubuntu Manual.
With this document I found useful information about what to translate or not:

But I could not determine if a term like desktop!background should be translated or
if it is a reserved word.

You can see some samples of such a term, for instance here:

If you can answer this question we would be able to fix a whole collection of such terms.
Thank you very much for your help.


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Enrico Rosina
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Kevin Godby (godbyk) said :

Hello, Enrico.

The latest version of that document is always available at <>. Chapter 4 is especially useful for translators.

To address the specific examples that you raised: those are index entries. The content of the \index command should be translated (with a few exceptions). There is a listing of \index commands in chapter 4 that shows which parts of the \index command should and should not be translated. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask here or on the ubuntu-manual mailing list.



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Enrico Rosina (e-rosina) said :

Hello Kevin,

Thank you for the quick answer, I passed it over to the french translators, <email address hidden>

There is no \index visible in the text to translate and no comment, so there was a doubt.

One more questions about that please:

Do we have a constraint to translate the index exactly with the same words as the target chapter, or not?
I assume not but but I would like to be sure (anyways it would be difficult to find the chapter's title in rosetta).

Thank you very much again

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Kevin Godby (godbyk) said :

Hello, Enrico.

Usually, the type of command surrounding the text is shown as a comment (or context remark). This may not be displayed in your translation program however. In Launchpad, you'll see index{#1} as a developer's note. This means that the text to be translated goes inside the \index command. See, for example, <>.

(When I first started looking at the index stuff in the translations, I was confused as well. I didn't expect the translation system we're using to extract the index commands into their own strings.)

When translating the manual, you're not constrained to making a direct translation. You are free to make make any modifications you think would benefit your readers. If you want to add, modify, or remove any index entries, you're welcome to do so.

The index entries should reflect what you think your readers may look for in the index to find that particular information in the manual.


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Enrico Rosina (e-rosina) said :

Thank you very much again.
I will transmit the response to the translators, and will suggest to rewrite those texts in french.
Have success with your projects.