[sylpheed:33097] Sylpheed documentation (was: Sylpheed 2.7.0 released)

Petr Kovar pknbe at volny.cz
Fri Jul 24 07:42:48 JST 2009

Hi guys!

I'm quite excited about the positive momentum we see here after years
(yep!), and would be more than happy to help you out. However, my poor
English indicates that we definitely need native English speakers to write
the actual content. :-) Please see my little proposal below.

Bruce Bowler <bbowler at bigelow.org>, Wed, 22 Jul 2009 10:43:28 -0400:

> On Tue, 21 Jul 2009 17:07:57
> +0200 Petr Kovar <pknbe at volny.cz> put fingers to keyboard and said:
> > Hi!
> > 
> > Bruce Bowler <bbowler at bigelow.org>, Tue, 21 Jul 2009 08:34:34 -0400:
> > 
> > > Are we ever going to get updated help/manual/FAQ???  The ones the
> > > currently ship with 2.7.0 (downloaded 10 minutes ago and successfully
> > > compiled on F10) are for version 0.7.3!
> > 
> > Yep, that's a long-standing issue. The Sylpheed documentation team is
> > totally dead for several years if I'm not mistaken, and in my opinion
> > nobody is currently working on the English manual and/or FAQ. 
> > 
> > The Japanese version of documentation is up-to-date though. If I recall
> > correctly, Hiro has asked for volunteers on this list before, so any
> > volunteer with substantial knowledge of Japanese around?
> > 
> > Best,
> > Petr Kovar
> I may, if I can find the time, try this myself, but has anyone tried
> babbelfish or any of the other online translators to see if they could
> provide a starting point for getting the English documentation up to date?

Babelfish, Google Translate, or any other online translator might be
helpful if we want to simply convert the Japanese version of manual as is.

However, they might be some technical difficulties in addition to the
linguistic ones in doing that. I'm talking about the ancient SGML doc
format that the Japanese version is still using (see the Sylpheed SVN
repository, nevertheless, for non-Japanese languages, it seems that the
repository distributes just the converted HTML files, not the XML source

The English manual[1] (and FAQ[2], interestingly enough, the Japanese
version of the FAQ doc doesn't exist) was converted to the current DocBook
XML in 2005, when the Sylpheed documentation team[3] was still alive. See
for yourself the CVS repository for the sylpheeddoc project at


However, it's not clear to me whether the SGML to XML migration has been
successfully completed.

Anyway, here comes my proposal for you guys who are interested in working on
Sylpheed doc:

First, try to contact the maintainers/admins of the sylpheeddoc
project and ask them about the possibility of resurrecting the

Second, introspect the completeness of the SGML to XML migration.

Third, decide whether we want to continue on working with the
original docs (that is the English manual & FAQ), and translate the chunks
of outdated text from the Japanese source; or whether it'd be easier for us
to start from the scratch and adopt the Japanese source as a whole. It
largely depends on the obsoleteness of the English material, I guess.


Petr Kovar

[1] http://sylpheeddoc.sourceforge.net/en/manual/manual.html
[2] http://sylpheeddoc.sourceforge.net/en/faq/faq.html
[3] http://sourceforge.net/projects/sylpheeddoc/

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