Which place for docs in French, German, etc?

Ulrik Vieth TWG-TDS@SHSU.edu
Wed, 28 Feb 1996 17:30:45 +0100

Phil wrote:

> I have it on good authority that dogs speak some form of double-English,
> although whether <Am.E> or <Br.E> remains moot: the following is
> a transcription of a conversation between an experimental canine
> linguist and his subject --
> As to equines, mine appears able to disobey commands no matter
> in which language they are expressed.

ROTFL (for those who speak hackish ;-), but seriously I guess it
should be obvious that it would cause more inconveniences than anything
else if we tried to sort documentation by country-code, going so far
as to separete "us" and "uk" (or actually "gb") depending on who wrote
the manual and what dialect the author used.  This would especially
cause problems for non-English speakers writing documentation for
their packages in English.  Who is going to enlighten me whether my 
English is more British or more American or some artificial mixture?

If you really have a look at the list of ISO country codes, e.g. at
http://www.nw.com/zone/iso-country-codes, you'll find that there are
currently some 253 territories, including e.g. 5 different codes for
France and various overseas French territories, 2 different codes for
the U.S. and U.S minor outlying islands, 2 different codes for the
Virgin Islands (British and U.S.), etc.  

I think it should be pretty obvious that this is not an ideal system
for classifying documentation by language.  Clearly labeling the
directories as "english", "german", "french", etc. would seem more
natural to me, especially if they coincide with the names already 
used in various language-aware packages such as babel, varioref, etc.

Whether or not it is really such a good idea to introduce language
subdirectories below texmf/doc is another question I'm not fully
convinced of, since most documentation will usually be available
only in one language.  Under these circumstances, I think it would
more important to make it easy to find whatever documentation is 
available for some package rather than making it easy to find 
all the documentation for one language and not finding the other 
documentation at all in that language-specific subtree.

Cheers, Ulrik.