xgettext [option] inputfile ...
.gmofiles. We can ship some of these files in the GNU
gettextpackage, and the result of regenerating them through
msgfmtshould yield the same values.
Search path for supplementary PO files is: `/usr/local/share/nls/src/'.
If inputfile is `-', standard input is read.
This implementation of
xgettext is able to process a few awkward
cases, like strings in preprocessor macros, ANSI concatenation of
adjacent strings, and escaped end of lines for continued strings.
PO mode is particularily powerful when used with PO files
created through GNU
gettext utilities, as those utilities
insert special comments in the PO files they generate.
Some of these special comments relate the PO file entry to
exactly where the untranslated string appears in the program sources.
When the translator gets to an untranslated entry, she is fairly often faced with an original string which is not as informative as it normally should, being succinct, cryptic, or otherwise ambiguous. Before chosing how to translate the string, she needs to understand better what the string really means and how tight the translation has to be. Most of times, when problems arise, the only way left to make her judgment is looking at the true program sources from where this string originated, searching for surrounding comments the programmer might have put in there, and looking around for helping clues of any kind.
Surely, when looking at program sources, the translator will receive more help if she is a fluent programmer. However, even if she is not versed in programming and feels a little lost in C code, the translator should not be shy at taking a look, once in a while. It is most probable that she will still be able to find some of the hints she needs. She will learn quickly to not feel uncomfortable in program code, paying more attention to programmer's comments, variable and function names (if he dared chosing them well), and overall organization, than to programmation itself.
The following commands are meant to help the translator at getting program source context for a PO file entry.
The commands c (
po-cycle-reference) and M-c
po-select-reference) both open another window displaying
some source program file, and already positioned in such a way that
it shows an actual use of the current string to translate. By doing
so, the command gives source program context for the string. But if
the entry has no source context references, or if all references
are unresolved along the search path for program sources, then the
command diagnoses this as an error.
Even if c (or M-c) opens a new window, the cursor stays in the PO file window. If the translator really wants to get into the program source window, she ought to do it explicitly, maybe by using command o.
When c is typed for the first time, or for a PO file entry which is different of the last one used for getting source context, then the command reacts by giving the first context available for this entry, if any. If some context has already been recently displayed for the current PO file entry, and the translator wandered to do other things, typing c again will merely resume, in another window, the context last displayed. In particular, if the translator moved the cursor away from the context in the source file, the command will bring the cursor back to the context. By using c many times in a row, with no interning other commands, PO mode will cycle to the next available contexts for this particular entry, getting back to the first context once the last has been shown.
The command M-c behaves differently. Instead of cycling through references, it lets the translator choose of particular reference among many, and displays that reference. It is best used with completion, if the translator types TAB immediately after M-c, in response to the question, she will be offered a menu of all possible references, as a reminder of which are the acceptable answers. This command is useful only where there are really many contexts available for a single string to translate.
Program source files are usually found relative to where the PO
file stands. As a special provision, when this fails, the file is
also looked for, but relative to the directory immediately above it.
Those two cases take proper care of most PO files. However, it might
happen that a PO file has been moved, or is edited in a different
place than its normal location. When this happens, the translator
should tell PO mode in which directory normally sits the genuine PO
file. Many such directories may be specified, and all together, they
constitute what is called the search path for program sources.
The command d (
po-add-path) is used to interactively
enter a new directory at the front of the search path, and the command
po-delete-path) is used to select, with completion,
one of the directories she does not want anymore on the search path.
Compendiums are yet to be implemented.
An incoming PO mode feature will let the translator maintain a compendium of already achieved translations. A compendium is a special PO file containing a set of translations recurring in many different packages. The translator will be given commands for adding entries to her compendium, and later initializing untranslated entries, or updating already translated entries, from translations kept in the compendium. For this to work, however, the compendium would have to be normalized. See section Normalizing Strings in Entries.
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