[Mediawiki-i18n] I have colon trouble

S Page spage at wikimedia.org
Thu Feb 14 07:19:46 UTC 2013

Hi there.

You may have seen the new-look account creation form on English
Wikipedia.[1] For now it is an English-only experiment, but my team is
developing it and a new-look userlogin form for all languages. The
design moves from horizontal rows to vertical form labels, and as a
result all the English form labels drop the trailing colon.  For
example, the existing form uses
   'yourpassword'               => 'Password:',
but the new form needs
  'userlogin-yourpassword' => 'Password',

1. It feels odd to duplicate dozens of messages solely because of the
dropped punctuation. The trailing ':' arises from using the message in
a horizontal layout where English has the punctuation convention
   Password:   ______
But this is a property of the form layout rather than the text.  Has
anyone considered separating the colon punctuation from messages?  I
checked and a few languages don't use the colon in their translations;
I couldn't tell if some non-Roman language uses other punctuation like
a dot or ->. There is a 'colon-separator' message but it includes a
trailing space as well.

2. My first attempt at MessagesQqq documentation for these was only:

'userlogin-yourpassword' => "Same as yourpassword but no trailing colon",

Siebrand didn't like it :) .  I can duplicate the existing
explanation, but how should I note that it's the same text as another
message except for the punctuation change?  Several of the existing
messages have {{Identical|Username}}, I could use that but it's really
{{Identical but for punctuation}}.

3. What's the URL on translatewiki to see the MessagesQqq help in
context with its templates expanded?

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:CreateAccount  , log out first.

Thanks so much for your help.  Eat more fiber :o)

=S Page  software engineer on Editor Engagement Experiments team

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