Re: Special folders in gnome

On Fri, 2006-01-13 at 13:52 +0100, Frederic Crozat wrote:
> Le vendredi 13 janvier 2006 �1:37 +0100, Murray Cumming a �it :
> > On Fri, 2006-01-13 at 21:29 +1100, Jeff Waugh wrote:
> > > <quote who="Mattias Eriksson">
> > > 
> > > > I know that this have been discussed in the past, but no solution was
> > > > reached then. I hope it will be different this time.
> > > 
> > > I strongly agree that we need a solution for this (something GConf defined
> > > would be perfect for desktop/network administrators). Let's do it for 2.16?
> > 
> > Why do we need to tranlate the on-disk folder name of Templates if we
> > don't need to translate the folder names of home, bin, and all of the
> > bash commands? Why isn't it good enough to translate it in the user
> > interface?
> I think it has been explained a long in the previous
> flamewar^Wdiscussion :)
> If you don't use the same name on disk and in the UI, you get incorrect
> result as soon as people don't use apps which are able to get the name
> of applications : shell,

The shell is strange, and always will be, whatever we do.

>  KDE applications, whatever apps not GNOME
> related.

Of course we'd need to standardize this. We already share a standard
with KDE for $HOME/Desktop/, and I guess that KDE also translate the
name of Desktop in their UI.

But if an application's (non-GTK+, non-Qt) file chooser doesn't
translate it, the effect is only that a Chinese person sees an English
folder name. Not the end of the world.

But if we encourage translated on-disk folder names then we get multiple
instances of the same folder when applications hard code the names. This
is what we experience on Windows, even though the API to avoid this is
available to all applications.

It's a lot safer to hope that developers use some API to translate in
the UI than to hope that developers use some API when installing stuff
to a path or opening that path.

> Since we (Mandriva) have decided to hit the bullet the hard way with our
> last release (Mandriva Linux 2006), let me share the problems we found
> by trying to implement such a system (and we are still not 100% happy
> with it but it can be seen as a prototype :) :
> After reading extensively the discussions on this subject in the various
> GNOME ml, we decided the following set of functionnalities we wanted to
> implement, both in GNOME AND KDE :
> -give users predefined directories in their home to store their data :
> Download, Documents, Music, Pictures and Video (this is newbie
> oriented).
> -allow quick access to these directories from the various file selectors
> -allow those directories to be distinguished when using file manager
> (nautilus, konqueror) with a different icon, but handled as standard
> directories
> -only display localized names in the UI
> -be able to access those directories now or in the future using scripts
> without too much trouble even if they are localized.
> -if users choose to delete these directories, they should not come back
> or be displayed in any UI anymore
> -if possible, applications save/load difectories should be using those
> directories by default.
> So, our initial implementation was doing the following :
> at first login, create directories with english name on disk in $HOME,
> also create .desktop file in $HOME, with localized name and pointing to
> those directories and add those .desktop file to ~/.gtk-bookmarks.
> Pro :
> -no need to patch applications / environment too much to get something
> working
> Con :
> -the english names were always visible, even in non english locale

Why, if you "only display localized names in the UI"?

> -removing the desktop file was not removing the directories
> To try to fix some problems, we changed implementation :
> -at first login, a directory called ~/.mdk-folders is created
> -we create real directories with localized name on disk in $HOME and we
> create symlink in ~/.mdk-folders to those directories, symlink name
> being the english name (easier scripting if needed)
> -we create .desktop file in ~/.mdk-folders pointing to those directories
> -we add .directory file in the created directories, allowing konqueror
> to display a nice icon for those directories (unfortunately, it can't be
> done in nautilus and shouldn't, it adds performance penalty too).
> -we patched KDE file selector to search for .desktop file in
> ~/.mdk-folders and add them as shortcuts in file selector
> -we add those .desktop file in ~/.gtk-bookmarks
> We are still not entirely satisfied with this solution, which is way too
> hackish : I had to patch nautilus and gnome-panel to teach them to
> handle .desktop in ~/.gtk-bookmarks correctly), Nautilus is not
> displaying nice icons for those folders, it doesn't work if you switch
> locales after first login and it doesn't scale very much. Also, we
> didn't have time to make sure applications would use relevant
> directories (Music for RB, Pictures for Gimp, etc..).
> We didn't hear many complains (from people who want to organize their
> own way) nor many "this is so cool", maybe because integration is not
> complete.
> It would be nice to have a desktop neutral way to do this, not too
> hackish.
> I hope our experience will benefit everyone here.
Murray Cumming
murrayc murrayc com

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