Re: To answer your question about the upcoming Style-Guide...

>> So lets organize the gnomeprint in the same fashion as Nextstep--by app
>> category, not by app creator.  Start Menu(1), Games(2), Quake II(3).
>> mouse motions.  Lets see how many for next step:   Dock-Games(1), Quake
>> II(2).  You've saved a mouse click, but lost a significant amount of desk
>> real estate.  Guess which resource is rarer.

>i know what you're hoping the obvious answer everyone will think of will
>be, but let's not forget the guy who _only_ plays quake and thinks it's
>annoying to dig through three layers of menus to get there. the current
>panel allows that program to reside in the third menu layer, or right on
>the panel, or both... just as it should be.

Hang on!

I am NOT, nor have I ever claimed that users should NEVER be able to add
actual apps to the toolbar.

Nor have I claimed that categories should NEVER be added to the toolbar.

What I'm talking about is *default behavior*.  I *rail* on Windows because
default behavior requests that apps install into author subheadings instead
of app category subheadings.  That, and the Programs section has no purpose.

BY DEFAULT, apps should not install directly onto the toolbar, nor should
they install into categories enclosed on the toolbar.  The default standard
should be the one the designers believe is the most efficient.  If the user
has a specific case, the *user* should choose to move the app to the

Actually, I think the Gnomeprint and the app loaders right now are *far* too
large.  The only reason right now I see for objects of this size is the
Stealth Project that I just got the screen shots to complete...

>> >> I think the present "Unix Way" of listing *categories* of apps on the
>> >> instead of a single app button is tremendously wasteful.  Screen desk
>> space
>> >> needs to deliver as much relevant information is as little space as
>> >> possible, mindful of the organizational factors of whitespace but not
>> >> excessive like 90% of the non-windows menu bars out there.  If there's
>> one
>> >> thing we learned from Windows 95 its that windows should have VERY
>> >
>> >the windoze bar as well as the gnome panel take a fixed amount of screen
>> >real estate anyway, so why not put that to good use?
>> >the afterstep wharf I use here uses the exact same amount of screen
>> as
>> >the gnome panel, but it puts it to a much better use.
>this i don't understand. if the windows bar and the gnome panel both
>take a fixed amount of screen real estate, and the gnome panel and
>afterstep wharf both use the same amount of screen space, what needs to
>be fixed where? the way i see it you have the option to run the same
>types of stuff in all 3 "bars". how is one more/less useful than

The big question is, since *any* object along a side is going to make it
more difficult to utilize the rest of that side, assuming you use a single
side for all information that should constantly be on screen...what
information gets through?

What indeed...

>> I'm working on that :-)   shhhh that's my Stealth Proposal that I was
>> slamming everyone for screenshots for *ehehehhehe*
>i give up: wanda the gnome fish for the afterstep/windowmaker dock? a
>gnome panel that collapses to a user-definable percentage of screen
>width/height? the latter would be useful but not vastly different from
>what we have now; the former would be no different from what we have

You'll see.  I got my screenshot drop from Soren, so :-D

>> start->apps>pagemaker is the best choice of all.
>this isn't, however, your call to make for any user except yourself.

We're talking about default case.  Most UI people who bitch and moan about
the Start Menu forget that it's totally reconfigurable, but to be fair it IS
a pain to reconfigure.  We want our default organization system to get it
right the first time.

NOW, if a user wants to move a specific item onto the Gnomebar, it should be
as simple as it is in 98...drag and drop from the gnomeprint submenu to the

(Actually, I'm not a huge fan of the BIG HUGE BOX saying "load me"...I like
the dimunitive little boxes that IE4 gives you *alot*.  Minimal space for
static information.  Boy, I wonder if people secretly hate me for giving
credit to a Microsoft division where credit is due.)

>all is, therefore, exactly as it should be. configure your panel the way
>you like it and thank george you can, because if i tried to mandate the
>way the panel should be, you wouldn't be happy. :)

Defaults are always mandated :-)

>> Well, we're talking about defaults here, and we have to remember the poor
>> schmuck who accidentally screws up and defaults to having no way to
>> anything.  It must be pretty clear in the GNOME interface that if you
>> muck up your interface, something like Control-Alt-F12 will let you load
>> an old set or the original set.
>imo this default should be whatever the system administrator has set up
>in /usr/share, but as far as out-of-the-box, the way root sees it when
>he first installs it, should pretty much be a blank canvas. again, the
>way things are right now is fine: each package you download (games,
>network, admin, etc) has a separate entry in the gnome menu, and if you
>didn't download any of those apps, that submenu doesn't appear. the only
>_really_ necessary apps in the default are the menu config utility and
>the panel config submenu, so the panel and gnome menu can be built up to
>whatever the user wants.

You misunderstand.  GNOME is quite powerful, and lets say suddenly you go
ahead and do something that leaves you with no ability to do anything unless
you understand the CLI and .rc files.  You need something like, say
Control-Alt-F12 to return to default.  Something like that(I don't really
like some random key config, cuz it's documentation-dependant).

>> One other thing--I've decided being able to launch apps from any location
>> where the mouse happens to be is quite nice, and should be highly
>> to WM's by the GNOME standard.
>agreed, but this is kind of a darwinian thing... wm's that don't allow
>for this are invariably forgotten, having lacked a fundamental feature
>of a window manager in the first place.

I see Redhat and GNOME becoming like Netscape with Mozilla.  Support,
direct, contribute, and take the finished product and spread it throughout
the marketplace.  If you don't think GNOME is going to have a standard WM,
you're kidding yourself.  Whatever comes in Redhat 5.2 or 6.0 is going to be
the standard GNOME WM.  The E guy *is* working for Redhat.  What's different
is UNLIKE KDE, Gnome apps will run under any WM.  That's pretty critical.

>well, i still don't see the problem. i happily use drawers and
>launcher-buttons alongside my "dynamic" applets in my panel and find it
>very convenient to have some apps (like rxvt) so easily accessible.

Yes, it's convenient, but it's awful default behavior except for the most
critical of applications.

Perhaps, and this is a maybe, we should have a specific set of apps that
are, by default, on the toolbar.  (Smaller, by the way.  Please.)  Netscape,
xterm, Midnight Commander make good options.

>> >> That's why the Start menu concept(maybe not the name, but who cares
>> >> the name, really?) is actually a great one.  It's the minimum
>> >> space needed to convey the fact that this is where one goes for their
>> >> applications.  That's the thing about statics.  You want to suck up as
>> >> little real estate as possible for them, so that the stuff you're
>> >> looking for, the dynamic stuff, actually has room to operate.
>unless you don't. then you stick the cute little square buttons wherever
>the hell you want them, and again, you thank george that the capability
>is already there to do so. :) i am, by the way, not the only person who
>likes having launch-buttons on the desktop.

There's a really big problem with apps on the desktop...stuff covers the
damn desktop up!  ;-)

>btw, have you tried enlightenment? you'd probably freak: it has a huge
>desktop-dragbar, tons of launch-buttons, additional buttons for raising
>and lowering desktops, and not a single dynamic applet or status
>indicator anywhere in sight, by default.

I've seen lots of pictures of enlightenment, and it's damn nice looking.  I
said dynamic information carries more value than static, not that all static
information should be eliminated.

>you might be surprised to learn that i've "converted" several friends to
>linux on the basis of this one windowmanager alone, and that there are
>many people who find it very useable in spite of (because of?) what you
>surely would call clutter.

What resolution were your friends running at?  Just a curiousity question
before I respond.

>> However, we've gotta prove that it works better.  If somebody else chokes
>> a burger because they're not smart enough to chew before they swallow,
>> doesn't mean we should avoid burgers.
>> We should just eat smarter.
>keep selling those burgers whole, though. don't chop them up just to
>make them safe for those who haven't learned how to chew; let those
>morons make their own decision. if they choke, let darwin take care of
>them. if they don't choke, hmm. maybe they're on to something. let them
>and for the record: i rather agree with you (or at least understand your
>viewpoint) on the single point of entry thing. my main reason for
>replying to this letter is to demonstrate that you have your freedom to
>enjoy your interface the way you like it, right now. let's not try to
>bind anyone else to that one philosophy of interface when it's already
>so customizable as to please nearly everyone. there's plenty of room for
>those who think multiple points of entry are better; if you disagree i'd
>invite you to question why the nextstep interface (now manifested in
>windowmaker, afterstep, and enlightenment) and mac os 8's tabbed windows
>are heralded as such great improvements on the gui.

"Tabbed windows"?  I haven't seen em.  Describe?

Interfaces should be customizable, but the average user must be expected NOT
to customize their interface and should thus be given the best possible
initial experience.

I see most of your points too.

>"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
>deserve neither liberty nor safety." --Benjamin Franklin

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