March 30, 2009

Thunderbird 3 beta3 release schedule for localizers

The Thunderbird developers have finalized the release schedule for Thunderbird beta3. Here it is (All dates use time of 23:59 PST - l10n-relevant dates are bold):
  • Slushy String freeze date: 2009-04-21 (Tuesday)
  • Slushy Code Freeze date: 2009-04-23 (Thursday)
  • Firm String / Code freeze date: 2009-04-28 (Tuesday)
  • l10n-mozilla-1.9.1 freeze date: 2009-04-30 (Thursday)
  • Target Build Ship date: 2009-05-05 (Tuesday)
As with our beta2 release, these dates have the following goals:
  • All string-related work should done by the slushy string freeze date
  • All other code-related work plus the late-string work should ideally be done by the slushy code freeze date
  • The firm freeze date will be for fixing remaining bugs and regressions found in the nightlies
  • The l10n-mozilla-1.9.1 date would be the last time by which we would accept changes in localizations
  • Late string changes will require an additional approval by the beta3 release driver Dan Mosedale (dmose on IRC)

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to respond here.

March 26, 2009

Feedback required: Time needed for TB3 l10n release preparation?

The Thunderbird developers are currently discussing the potential schedule for localizers for the final release of Thunderbird 3, which is currently scheduled to be released somewhere in June or July.

The main issue currently is the overall string freeze date for TB3.

We currently do not have a good feeling on how many string-related changes might still be needed for the final TB3 release. So the question basically comes down to:

"How much time do you need at a minimum before the final release date?"

This question goes mostly to those of you, who have not been part of our alpha or beta releases so far and therefore have a large amountof missing and obsolete strings left. The localizations that are most affected by this are: Danish, English (UK), Gujarati, Macedonian, Mongolian, Slovenian, Turkish, Chinese (Traditional)

So we'd really like to hear from you guys!

But of course this question also affects all other locales, as we assume that you guys want to do a lot more internal and external QA work on your localizations than you did for the alpha or betareleases. So we'd like to hear from all other locales as well.

We'd really appreciate a broad feedback from the l10n community here. Please remember, that this is the first major release for pretty much everyone, who is currently in a leadership position in the TB community. So we really need your feedback to make a good decision.

Please direct all your feedback to the discussion of this matter in the l10n newsgroup. That will make it much easier to track all your feedback

March 17, 2009

On the road to 55 locales

Seth recently blogged about Firefox reaching 70 supported locales. That's very impressive indeed.

So, some of you might ask, how is Thunderbird holding up?

The short answer: We're doing great!

The long answer: We're currently at 54 supported locales and are closing in on the 55th (Bengali). Within the last six months, we've added 10 locales:
  • Arabic
  • Estonian
  • Frisian
  • Galician
  • Indonesian
  • Icelandic
  • Albanian
  • Tamil
  • Ukrainian
  • Vietnamese

and more are on the way. If we manage to release Thunderbird 3 in all those 55 locales, we will have increased our locale outreach by 17 locales compared to Thunderbird 2.

This is really a critical pillar of Thunderbird's growth strategy, because it will enable us to compete with other mail applications in many parts of the World, where we couldn't compete before, because people could only download the English version.

I believe this also shows that the creation of Mozilla Messaging was a smart move, that has not only invigorated the mailnews developer community, but the localization community as well.

This wouldn't be possible without the drive and passion of all the individuals who are eager to translate Thunderbird into their native language. Thanks a lot, guys! We really appreciate your efforts!

March 3, 2009

Thunderbird 3 beta2 l10n post-mortem

As the Thunderbird developers are planning a post-mortem meeting for the beta2 release tomorrow, I thought that maybe we can do the same here on the blog with an exclusive focus on l10n matters.

So I would be interested in what you thought of the release process from an l10n perspective.
  • What worked well?
  • What didn't work?
  • What can be improved?
  • What lessons have you learned?
  • What lessons do I need to learn as the l10n coordinator?
Please post your answers and suggestions as a comment here in the blog. Thanks for your support in this matter.