Re: Modifying properties of several objects at the same time

On 26 Oct 2003, Daniele Pighin wrote:
Alle 17:47, venerdà 24 ottobre 2003, Lars Clausen ha scritto:
I also assert that the imaginable possibility of being able to set
multiple values for the same field at the same time (when multiple
objects are selected), is not really a feature that is
needed. Because, if one really wants different values for some
specific property, then one can simply bring up the properties dialog
individually for each object in turn.

Indeed.  That'd be way too confusing a feature...  <daydream>Would be
nice though to be able to, say, add 1 to all linewidths...</daydream>
but it's so rarely useful that the interface would be clutter.

I'm sorry I don't agree here.

If you edit a diagram with, say, 20 arrows, and then you decide that the
arrows must bu thinner or thicker (if I have to put the diagram in my
thesis I want it to be informative AND _nicelooking_, so this make-up is
part of diagram editing), you have to click something as 100 buttons, and
move across menu entries too.

Not if you select all the arrows (Select->Same Type) and can use properties
setting to change them (you can do that with a group right now, but it
would coerce all properties values to the same).

Further more, I guess that most users do first draw the diagram using
standard values (the informative part of the action of drawing) and then
rearrange items and edit properties to their taste and needs (the make-up

I agree here.

IMHO this is the mising-feature that introduces more overhead.

Furthermore, I'd love to resecond the proposal of using the program
window to edit properties of multiple objects, that is:

- say that I have selected 2 text objects (T1 and T2), a box (B1) and a line
(L1). If I:
- double click on the text button in the app window and change some text
properties, this changes are reflected by T1 and T2.
- If I change the foreground color, all of the four objects get their fgcolor
- If I select a thicker and dashed line, B1 and L1 get such an outline.

Are you saying that what's currently used for defaults (object buttons,
color area, line width area, line style areas) should also be used for
changing properties of existing objects?  Then what happens if you've
selected an object and want to change to a different style for making a new
object?  Also, a number of objects share a property (e.g. font) that's part
of the defaults dialog (what you get when you click the object button),
would they all get changed if you change it for one?

This approach has 2 advantages:

- NO work at all needed at the interface level (as the interface is already
there). If you want to make things harder, you could provide some visual  
hint about the fact that selected object don't share one of their
properties' values, for example "shading" the corresponding widget in the
application window).

- This is far more intuitive than the others.

It's an interesting alternative, but so different from the existing system
that we make sure to should think it through first.


Lars Clausen (| HÃrdgrim of Numenor
"I do not agree with a word that you say, but I   |----------------------------
will defend to the death your right to say it."   | Where are we going, and
    --Evelyn Beatrice Hall paraphrasing Voltaire  | what's with the handbasket?

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