Re: Desktop as Nautilus

On 15 Mar 2006, at 19:23, Nigel Tao wrote:

If it's in the bottom right corner of the screen (as it is in
Ubuntu's default setup, for example), it's several thousand pixels
wide and several thousand pixels high, making it the easiest thing
to drag to in the whole of Gnome.

Except when, like me, you want panel hide arrows turned on :)

In which case, you stick it in almost the corner, and it's still very
easy to hit - slam the mouse into the corner, and then just the
slightest flick of the wrist in the opposite direction.  Two
movements, both fast according to Fitts - the first one has a
superlarge target area, the second one is a short distance.

Well, they're both "fast" if you're not holding down a mouse button at the time, but there's an extra level of muscle control required when you are, which makes the direction change that bit more tricky. And actually, in practice, short distances can be made more difficult than long ones by the realities of mouse mechanics... e.g. when your desk has grit (or crumbs!) on it that throw the rollers off a bit, or you have one of those old optical mice that suffers from "pointer wobble" or needs to be always aligned with its shiny mat's X-Y axes for it to go exactly where you intended. So it's never all quite as straightforward as Fitts would have us believe :)


CALUM BENSON, Usability Engineer       Sun Microsystems Ireland
mailto:calum benson sun com            Java Desktop System Team             +353 1 819 9771

Any opinions are personal and not necessarily those of Sun Microsystems

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