I was flabbergasted by the forced-unto-us not-so-functional online help
system, as you might have read several times on this list. This is something
that mostly targets the non-English speaking communities (at least on Linux
and OS X) - and we were not asked how the end product should look like.
Since it was implemented there were no major enhancements and the
non-functionality of that online help is still obvious to all.
Now the thing will go further:
What are the OFFICIAL specs, confirmed by the LibreOffice community for
further development of the online help? What is "our approach", who is "us"?
Does it include us, the L10N community, translating and updating the help,
or who? Did the L10N teams leads give their perspective on this issue?
The online help system developer has also revamped the search toolbar "to
behave more like in [...] Firefox":
and he is now also mentoring students cleaning the UI. While some tasks in
look like real cleanup, some might really be re-designs.
I am wondering if LO is (unlike OOo) going in the direction that every
developer can change the UI without consent from the community. (That could
lead to LO developers thinking loud on their blogs like this: "Playing with
the LO code yesterday I decided that LO will now drop the Base component,
because I don't like it, it just takes place on disk, it should be an
extension.") Or maybe there are some individuals (or employees of some
companies) with greater rights and privileges than others in the LO
Should not the UI changes be discussed in length? With some usability
studies etc.? Will the disappointment with the decision-making process lead
to further forks of LibreOffice or to the return of translation teams back
to the OOo project?
I am writing here, because I think this is not a single-developer decision
nor just a GUI/developer-people-thing, and because I would like to know the
official specs for the Help and GUI redesign/cleanup as well as the opinion
of the L10N teams, because international help system is very much in the
hands of the L10N teams.
I do like Kendy and his commitment to this project, I do know that he means
well and is spending a lot of time working on the development of
LibreOffice. But some things just need major consensus of all the people
deeply involved. Maybe there should be a sandbox for that kind of
enhancements and people should then vote if they like the feature enough so
it would be further developed and included into vanilla LO.
Thank you for your time and attention.
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- [libreoffice-l10n] Kendy's Work in LO GUI+Help · Martin Srebotnjak
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