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Localizing the Report Configuration Settings Popup Dialog

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Author Configuration popup uses the skin language instead of the GUI language
Posted Friday, May 2, 2008 - Post #21582
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Genopro version: 2.0.1.4
Genopro GUI language selected: English
Report skin: Customized Flemish (NL-BE) version

Problem:  When generating a report you get the possibility to "view & amend the configuration settings".  However, the pop-up screen that is used for these settings uses messages that are defined in the dictionary.xml of the customized version that you select to generate the report in (Flemish in my case), and not the language that was selected in the GenoPro GUI (English in my case).

Looks as if the screen messages used to set the report configuration parameters should be moved to another file and linked to the GenoPro GUI language selection.  No?

Edited: Monday, May 12, 2008 by GenoProSupport

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21583
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The problem of translating / localizing the configuration parameters represents a far deeper problem.

What Ron did with the configuration settings popup is beyond what I dreamed the report generator could do.  The use of report parameters are everywhere and makes the report generator so beautiful.  It is great for the user to be able to customize the report via parameters, however it would be better for GenoPro to be able to remember those parameters, so there is no popup asking to amend configuration settings each time a report is being generated.

The problem is where and how to store the report configuration setting parameters.  Should those configuration parameters be stored in the .gno file and follow the document, or should the parameters be stored in the Registry and be sharable by all reports?  Then, how to associate those report parameters to a particular skin, especially if the report skin is renamed or customized.  After all, if you want to customize a report, you will probably want to keep the same customized parameters as you did generating your last report.

After exhaustive thinking, we found a solution:

GenoPro Gamma will have a special repository for configuration parameters.  This repository will be a special instance of the StringDictionary and behaving somewhat like the Session class.  This way, a script will be able to add, modify and remove parameters as desired, and load and save them if wanted.  The following example does not make any logical sense; it just shows the methods available and possibilities of having a repository for configuration parameters:

Parameters.Load("NarrativeReport")
Parameters.Save("NarrativeReportBackup") ' Create a backup copy of the configuration parameters
If (Parameters("fUsePictureThumbnails") = "Y") Then
   Parameters.Add("PictureSizeSmall", "100x100", "Size of the picture thumbnail")
   GeneratePictureThumbnails  ' Call the subroutine to generate the code for the thumbnails
End If
Parameters.Load("NarrativeReport") ' Re-load the original configuration parameters

By having a repository for configuration parameters, GenoPro will be display those parameters in the report generator dialog, the same as GenoPro does for the report options and report privacy tabs. The user will have a list, similar as the list of report skins available where he could pick which parameters to apply when generating a report, and also have a Reset button to restore to their original settings.

Back to your question of localizing the configuration parameters...

The localization / translation of the report parameter configuration settings will be done via the built-in interface of GenoPro.  Since GenoPro Gamma will understand the meaning of each report parameter, it will be able to display a dialog to localize them and save the localized text along with all other languages.

Unfortunately this feature will be only in GenoPro Gamma, because any improvement to GenoPro 2007 creates a high risk of causing a bug.  The goal is to keep GenoPro 2007 stable, and the Gamma will be the new testing ground to innovate and make improvements.

Edited: Monday, May 12, 2008 by GenoProSupport

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21585
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I also noticed the fact reported by Nand but never really bothered. He is right in a way. The Config Parameters should be in the same Language file as the GenoPro language setup.

So why don't you provide the said parameter list(s) within the Genopro Language files? Bear in mind that you will have to provide several param list nodes for: the main Narrative Report, the Descendants Report and ... any future Reports to come.

By the way, the param list is actually in config.xml but not in Dictionary anymore.

JC

Edited: Saturday, May 3, 2008 by GenoProSupport

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21586
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Thanks for the reply and the ideas.  I actually stumbled into this because I was testing how to generate three different reports (French, Dutch and English - the Irish branch in the family agreed to go for English) for each GenoGram.  Hence, having the report in different languages is surely OK, but I never got used to non-English application interfaces.  I presume I'm in the job for too long now.

JC, 

When you say the param list is actually in Config.xml but not in Dictionary.xml anymore, is that since the last version?  I'm still struggling with 2.0.1.4 but that's because I needed to synchronize my translation work earlier this year and I'm still not done with that.

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21587
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jcguasp (5/3/2008)
The Config Parameters should be in the same Language file as the GenoPro language setup.

I disagree.  GenoPro Gamma will store the config parameters in a separate file named ConfigParameters.xml, next to Config.xml.  This way, people will be able to share parameters among each other.  Say you customize a skin, you can send the file ConfigParameters.xml to someone else.  What will be stored in the language file will be the description and help tips for the parameters, but not the parameter values.

So why don't you provide the said parameter list(s) within the GenoPro Language files?

The language files for translating GenoPro were done after the report generator.  Now that the system for translating GenoPro is in place, the translation of the report templates can use some of those facilites to store the localized text.

Bear in mind that you will have to provide several param list nodes for: the main Narrative Report, the Descendants Report and ... any future Reports to come.

I am well aware of this and this is the reason why I want a scalable solution for reports to share parameters from each other.  At the moment, there is a lot of redundancy (repetition) between various reports, and mostly when someone customizes a report, were there is a full redundant copy of the report parameters.

By the way, the param list is actually in config.xml but not in Dictionary anymore.

The list of parameters has always been in Config.xml.  If you open Config.xml, you will see something like that:

<Skin>
    <ReportGenerator ScriptLanguage="VBScript">
        <Parameters _PathPictures="pictures/"  _fValidatePictureCache="Y" ... />
    </ReportGenerator>
</Skin>

The problem is the parameter list is quite long.  For GenoPro 1.0.1.5 RC10b, the list of parameters has been modified to the following:

<Skin>
    <ReportGenerator ScriptLanguage="VBScript">
        <Parameters _PathPictures="pictures/" />
        <ParameterDescriptions>
            <PresentationSettings ... />
            <PictureSettings ... />
            <MapSettings ... />
            <TimelineSettings ... />
            <LanguageSettings ... />
            <NameSettings ... />
            <SVGSettings ... />
        </ParameterDescriptions>
    </ReportGenerator>
</Skin>

This is a great improvement, however it does not solve the problem of saving the parameters and sharing them among report.  The new solution in GenoPro Gamma will address those issues, so a report generating a picture album could re-use (share_ the same <PictureSettings> as the narrative report.  No extra programming necessary, as GenoPro would handle loading, merging and saving those report parameters.

As for translating the text, the text will likely be stored with the language file.  The English text would alway be in the <ParameterDescriptions>, however if a translated text or description is found in the language file, then GenoPro would display this value to the user.  Example:

In Config.xml:

<PicturePadding T="Picture border (pixels)" Default="15"  Size="2" />

and the following in the language file

<PicturePadding T="Bordure de la photo (pixels)" />

This way, if a new parameter has not been translated, it will be displayed in English, and if a default value or some other value is added, it will not break anything in the translated text.  Without this solution, someone customizing Config.xml will have to manually insert any new parameters.  Experience tells me that future versions of GenoPro reports will have more parameters, so it is important do design a good architecture for both the report developers, the ones translating / localizing them, and a friendly user interface for those who just want to generate a report in a given language.

Edited: Saturday, May 3, 2008 by GenoProSupport

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21588
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To Nand:

Here is what's in the latest Ron's 2.0.1.5RC10b Nar Rep config.xml:

<Author Name="Ron" Version="2008.02.12" DateLastModified="03-Feb-2008" Comment="Bug Fixes and parameter descriptions moved to Config.xml, replacing Parameters element" />

For your Rep translations, log onto my profile and click on one of my trees. You'll see how I linked them together, Langwise. It's home made. You may have another idea!

JC 

Posted Saturday, May 3, 2008 - Post #21591
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JC, looks as if we were talking about different parameters.  Got the picture now.  Thanks.

All, for what concerns the popup menu question texts that are stored in dictionary.xml, I'll keep both the English and the translated versions in the same file and comment one of them out.  That should do for now.



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