search categories in beagle-search

   Beagle-search used to include a "search scope" menu to choose the
type of data to search. My experience is that this menu often got
ignored. I decided to make the category chooser more visible by
putting it beside the input box. I am hoping that users will now use
this more and get faster and fewer results. There was also an inherent
slow path in the earlier implementation; beagle-search will feel a bit
quicker now.

   However I am not sure if this UI change is a good idea or even an
improvement over the earlier. I tend to clutter GUIs by displaying all
the possible options (y'no' ... like one of the other DEs). I am
attaching two screenshots; scope-combobox.jpg shows the new UI and
scope-menu.jpg shows the old UI. The changes are also available in the
svn trunk. Try the svn trunk, take a look at the screenshots. I would
really appreciate some feedback.

   There is one more hurdle to cross before users can benefit from
choosing a category for searching; currently even though there are
results from only one category, not all the space is used. This
sometimes forces the users to press the forward/back arrows even
though there is ample space in to show all the results. There is a bug
report opened on this, and I think it also has a few rejected patches.
Apparently this is a hard problem to solve given the way the results
are now displayed in beagle-search. Anyone willing to learn Gtk should
benefit a lot by working on this problem :-D.

Thanks in advance for your time and feedback,
- dBera

Debajyoti Bera @
beagle / KDE fan
Mandriva / Inspiron-1100 user

Attachment: scope-menu.jpg
Description: JPEG image

Attachment: scope-combobox.jpg
Description: JPEG image

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