[Pkg-ime-devel] Bug#708848: fcitx: provide default input methods if one is not specified

Drew Parsons dparsons at debian.org
Sun May 19 03:29:12 UTC 2013

Package: fcitx
Version: 1:4.2.7-2
Severity: normal

One of the design philosophies in Debian is that packages should
generally "just work" when installed.  At the moment fcitx does not do
this: if you install the fcitx package, no input methods are included.
Hence a default installation does not work.  

(I mentioned this in bug #708149, but I think the question is worth
raising as a separate bug. ibus has the same problem, I filed a
parallel bug #708847).

Of course fcitx does not know if you want Korean, Japanese or Chinese
input (or which version of them). Nevertheless by pulling in no
method, it appears to a dumb casual user as though fcitx is just
broken. I think it would be better for casual users if some input
methods (the most common input method of each language) were installed
by default, unless the user specifies a specific one.
It is useful to make a comparison with xserver-xorg.  xserver-xorg
installs all video drivers via xserver-xorg-video-all, unless a user
specifies a specific one (which provides xorg-driver-video). The
xserver-xorg dependency is Depends: xserver-xorg-video-all | xorg-driver-video.

By analogy, all that needs to be done is to add to fcitx
     Depends: fcitx-input-method-common | fcitx-input-method

Each fcitx input method (fcitx-googlepinyin, fcitx-hangul,
fcitx-anthy, etc) then 
     Provides: fcitx-input-method.

And fcitx-input-method-common is a simple dummy package that depends on
selected common methods (it's a separate debate which ones should be
recommended for each language!)

The patch is essentially non-invasive I think.  The outcome is that
fcitx becomes more accessible (more useful) to casual users who are not
in need of one specific input method.

It's easy for me to generate a patch for you, let me know if that would be

Drew Parsons

-- System Information:
Debian Release: jessie/sid
  APT prefers unstable
  APT policy: (500, 'unstable'), (1, 'experimental')
Architecture: amd64 (x86_64)
Foreign Architectures: i386

Kernel: Linux 3.8-2-amd64 (SMP w/8 CPU cores)
Locale: LANG=en_AU.utf8, LC_CTYPE=en_AU.utf8 (charmap=UTF-8)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/dash

Versions of packages fcitx depends on:
pn  fcitx-bin      <none>
pn  fcitx-data     <none>
pn  fcitx-modules  <none>

Versions of packages fcitx recommends:
pn  fcitx-config-gtk | kde-config-fcitx         <none>
pn  fcitx-frontend-all | fcitx-frontend-fbterm  <none>
pn  fcitx-ui-classic | fcitx-ui-light           <none>
ii  im-config [im-switch]                       0.21

Versions of packages fcitx suggests:
pn  fcitx-m17n   <none>
pn  fcitx-tools  <none>

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