help wanted, trying out a few ideas for post 0.94

since Dia compiled so nicely I've been trying out a few ideas
some of which are simple and others that I haven't got working yet but I
would appreciate help with (help, advice towards figuring it out myself
as much as possible)
I'll provide proper patches later when I've got the ideas sorted out

the gist of it is, more keybindings [1], some renaming [2] and more menu
items to take advantage of the features of Dia I have only recently begun
to appreciate [3].

[1] I wanted to add keybindings using some of the Function keys (F8, F9)
but the keybindings for the toolbox seem to be in a differnt context to
the bindings in the document window, so if the toolbox is out of focus
they are not much use.
This fits in with an idea I have that I would like to make the File and
Help menus in the Toolbox and the Document Window more consistant with
each other.  I mentioned yesterday that I was hoping to have the recent
files in both File menus, and although it could be be made optional I'd
prefer to always put them in a submenu 'Open Recent' (like the Gimp
does) and keep the file menu uncluttered.  I haven't tried doing this yet
but I hope it will be easy enough (dont laugh if it is trivial, these
things are always easy in hindsight when you know how).
Going against consistancy but following the Gnome Guidelines I added
Preferences to the bottom of the edit menu and it feels comfortable (and
i used the letter E as the mnemonic so that you can go Alt,E,E to quickly
access the preferences even though the Gnome HIG has been misleading
people to do it differently).

I added a keybinding for Select, Connected  Ctrl+Shift+T because it is
similar to Transitive ctrl+T.

Added Ctrl+R to Show Rulers but I need to lookup how to also allow
Ctrl+Shift+R to try and placate Gimp users.

Redraw F5
Select Invert Ctrl+I

... probably a few others I'm forgetting but I'll worry about that when
I'm making proper patches.

[2] I renamed Objects to just Object because that seems to be the
convention when naming menus (File not Files, Image not Images, Layer not
When I added the keybinding Ctrl+I for Invert it also appeared in the menu
for the other 'Invert' so I figured I could get away with it by renaming
the other Invert to Inverse.

[3] Layers, I have turned around completely from not understanding how
useful they can be to wanting to use them everywhere.  I have been using
Layers a lot with the Gimp, I wrote scripts to provide New Layer from
Cut/Copy that I'm rather proud of which make it very quick and easy to
create a new layer.  Also Inkscape is working towards
adding Layers like functionality and I took a closer look at Adobe
I think more people would appreciate the Layers features if they had
menu items, making them more discoverable and allow them to have
convenient keybindings.  "money for old rope".
however I'm pretty clueless about how to get started on implenting the
hooks and callbacks to the existing functionality.

There is plenty of exisiting functionality, New Layer, Delete; Arrange
Forwards, Backwards; Show All/None, Current Only, Invert; Layer properties
(ie rename the layer).
I should be able to figure out eventually how to add easier features like
Duplicate Layer, New Layer from Cut/Copy, and Merge (hopefully very
similar to grouping and ungrouping)

(Alt+L is being used as shortcut for Tools/Line which would need to be
changed but I'm sure Dia will have single letter bindings again whenever
the text entry is overhauled).

Hope these ideas are of interest and you can nudge me in the right
direction with relevant examples and documentation on how to implement
them.  Please do let me know what you all think of the ideas good or bad.


Alan Horkan

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