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

Dan Kaminsky <> wrote:
> What I'm talking about is *default behavior*.
yepp, that exactly is the matter at hand.

> 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
> Gnomeprint.
why not give the user this freedom in the first place? why not START the
whole install procedure by having the user drag&drop the app icon on the
menu folder he wants it installed into? kind of like the "install icon" in
cde, only that it additionally installs the whole app on the system.

just a weird idea.

> 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.
also, it doesn't care a ditch about your reconfiguration. the next darn
program will again install itself in start->programs->bluebyte->incubation
or whatever, no matter that I created a start->games folder long ago.

gnome should NOT be permitted to duplicate that mistake. that's why I came
up with the idea above. it surely isn't finished, but maybe a starting point
for discussion?

> We want our default organization system to get it
> right the first time.
and that means NOT following ANYTHING too closely. if gnome looks too much
like windoze or apple or whatever, people will assume it works like it. if
you copy, you've got to copy it all. I don't remember the source, but a
while ago I read that people unfamiliar with a new functionality (this was
tested with home stereos, I believe) are most confused if the new or changed
thing looks like something they know. they are not as confused if it looks
as new as it is. it's probably a matter of category thinking, the same way
you don't notice the details anymore once you recognized an unfamiliar image
as a known item, say a tree.

> 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.
and no matter what rhlabs comes up with, gnome needs to support every wm
that wants to be supported. even kwm if the need is there. the ability to
choose my windowmanager is one of the prime reasons I love X - despite all
it's shortcomings.

> 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.

xterm is the only thing I agree. for everything else you will find large
minorities of people who don't use that thing in their lifetime.

if you want to put some apps directly on the toolbar, why not instead put
more than one menu folder there? create a sane default setting and make it
clear that it's customizable.

> 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.
sorry, but I STRONGLY disagree here. the average user WILL customize his or
her interface, I'll take absolutely ANY bet on that.

I work in a company where one of the problems of maintaining a standard
windoze setup throughout 100+ machines is a major source of trouble. one of
the problems is that users want to customize their machines. they want
custom applications, but they also want those nice running-dog-mouse-cursors
and cute screen savers and cool desktop backgrounds.
(damn am I happy that I work on the solaris and Linux machines. :) )

The universe does not have laws -- it has habits, and habits can be broken.

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