Hi principals

Behalf Of Philipp von Weitershausen
> Sent: Monday, September 12, 2005 6:32 PM
> To: zope3-dev@zope.org
> Subject: [Zope3-dev] RFC: Rename "principal" to "participant"
> Hi there,
> Since "principal" doesn't seem to be a common term in IT speak either,
> translators repeatedly have their problems with it. In German, for
> example, we came up with "Nutzungsberechtigter" which is just an
> arbitrary choice and doesn't even fit all aspects of "principal". It's
> still a good choice for now because if we had chosen to literally
> translate it as "Prinzipal", noone would even be close to 
> understanding
> what we meant. Sebastien Douche seemed to have the same problem
> regarding the French translation, as he told us on IRC today. 
> There just
> aren't good native words that translate "principal" well enough, let
> alone a good literal translation.

I don't agree

Principal is a common term in IT security. Since we use a principal
based security system, (perhaps there are other ones) we have to use 
the right name for this "principal". 

Perhaps it is helpful to describe what a principal really are.

A principal object represents the security context of the user on whose 
behalf the code is running, including the user's identity, groups and 
roles to which they belong.

> So, I would like to give "principal" a better name. How about
> "participant"? After all, a principal _participates_ in an interaction
> through a participation (e.g. an HTTP request). Participant 
> should also
> be pretty easy to translate: it's a common word, especially outside IT
> vocubulary, which means chances are good to find appropriate native
> translations for it.

No, no, a participant is not a principal. See the wfmc workflow 
implementation. Participants are used for participate on a process
task. Participants don't even know how to login. Participants are more 
like a role in some use cases.

A wfmc participant can be one of the following types:
- user
- role
- group
- organisational unit
- resource-set
- resource
- system

If you implement such participants of a workflow you can map a participant
to a role or a user(in z3 a principal) described above.

I think there is no way to rename principal to participant since they are
totaly different components.

> (Note that the point of finding translations for technical 
> terms is not
> only for the sake of a translated Zope 3 UI. It's more about 
> how people
> understand technical terms. I think most Zope 3 developers 
> aren't native
> English speakers and they do not necessarily think in 
> English. So, good
> words that have good native translations help the 
> understanding process
> on their end. That is not only important for _learning_ a concept, but
> also for _explaining_ it. As a book author, I know what I'm talking
> about... :))

I think you are right here. It's not easy to explain a security concept.
Perhaps we have to collect some good documentation from other principal 
based security concept and see how they describe this part.

Roger Ineichen

Projekt01 GmbH
> Hope to hear some comments,
> Philipp
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