Re: guessing, speculation, and opinion

Russell Nelson <> writes:

> There's a simple answer to whether one or more menus in the panel is
> good: test it.

Indeed.  The way Emacs has done this in the past seems OK: provide
ways for people to test both options, broadcast widely, and take a
vote as to which people prefer.  That's not ideal, given that you may
miss potential users (so you want the experiment to be as easy as
possible for people to do), but it ought to work reasonably well.

It also doesn't answer the question of which is objectively better (as
the pie vs linear menu research does), but it's better than pure
speculation, and would surely be welcomed by users.  

It would also be nice to have some documentation on the panel, given
that it seems so central to Gnome.  I can't see what the point of
drawers is, for example; I assume that I'm supposed to be able to put
applets and things on them, but that doesn't work.  

I just read that it's possible to have two panels on the same side of
the screen at the same time, so long as at least one is hidden, and
that it just starts out with only one.  If there's some way of
enabling this, it's not obvious.

Both of these are probably just limitations in the version I've got
(0.20); a manual for the intended program (indicating which bits
aren't yet implemented) might help to suggest future problems in the
GUI.  If it's hard to explain, it may be hard to use.

> But that would be work, and it's much easier for the lazy man to
> guess, speculate, and opine.

Sometimes speculation is enough, though.  icewm has something
superficially similar to a start menu, but it's entirely set up by the
user, so it's easy to limit it to one level of cascade, which feels

Win95's menu is user-alterable (I think), but it quickly seems to fill
the whole screen, and is horrible.

Gnome's could easily go the same way; currently the really annoying
bit is adding something to the panel, which is 4 levels of menu.  I
can live with that, since modifying the panel is relatively unusual,
but it's annoying and appears to be unnecessary: the first menu is
small enough that the menu that Panel produces (which is also small)
could just be moved---I think I'd prefer that, but of course, it would
be better to be able to try it for a while, to see.

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