Re: [Translation-i18n] Proposal for declinations in gettext

> >I guess you misunderstood me. The translator provides all the forms one
> >word takes, if it's a finite number (no matter how large, but finite).
> >It's along the same lines as Plural-forms feature of gettext, just for
> >the different purpose, and entirely controlled by translator: (s)he uses
> >it when appropriate, with no interference of programmer (who, in case of
> >plural-forms, had to insert ngettext calls instead of gettext).

Unfortunately this fails for agglutinitive languages such as Turkish (mine) 
and Finnish. 

The number of forms we could provide (not exactly declinations, just the way 
the language works by adding suffixes) is fairly close to infinite. 

For Turkish, simply adding the 5 declinations of the word would cover only a 
small portion of the strings that are problematic. 

> >Could you perhaps give a complete example, and why the proposed
> >mechanism couldn't handle it? I certainly have no experience in many
> >languages, but if this would prove useable for at least 20 languages,
> >I'd find it quite desireable in such a widespread package as gettext. I
> >guess I can count in so far at least Serbian, Russian, Ukrainian,
> >Croatian, Slovenian, German, Macedonian, Bulgarian, Belarus, Polish,
> >Czech, Slovak, Lithuanian, ... If this wouldn't work for any of these,
> >please inform me; if it *would* work for any language that is not in
> >this list, than inform me even faster :-)

> in a truly agglutinating language such as Finnish the entire clause
> "in my house" would be 1 word.

ev - house
evimde - in my house. 
evimdeler - they are in my house
evimdesiniz - you are in my house

As opposed to the 5 declinations: 

ev - house
evde - at the house
evden - from the house
eve - to the house
evi - (makes an object, such as would be used in:
	 I am painting the house - evi boyuyorum)

If the word takes a pronoun, such as my, you add the suffix for the pronoun 
(genitive) and keep the declinations at the end: 

evim - my house
evimde - at my house
evimden - from my house
evime - to my house
evimi - objectify as in I am painting my house - evimi boyuyorum

> Your feature would encourage the programmers to keep constructing the sort
> of strings that you present in the beginning. My point is that this will
> make the programs impossible to translate for many target languages.

Exactly. The minimum translatable unit is a stand-alone clause or sentence. 
This principle works for all languages. I despair at trying to explain 
anything else to mono-lingual developers. 

Best regards,

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