Re: Reprise of the panel layout proposal

--- Jonas De Vuyst <jonas devuyst advalvas be> wrote:
> I'm not sure why you didn't cc your mail to
> gnome-gui-list...

Because I didn't check the "To:" field before sending
my e-mail. Oops. :(

> On 20 Jun 2001 20:01:48 -0700, James Ramsey wrote:
> <snip>
> > The advantage I see to having "Programs" and
> > "Settings" as separate entries on the root menu is
> > that it is easier to scan the main menu. If you
> are
> > looking for an application to run, go to the
> > "Programs" menu; if you are looking for a setting
> to
> > configure, go to the "Settings" menu. It's only
> one
> > extra menu level.
> I've always considered the seperation betweeen
> programs and settings to
> be awkward, users will probably consider the
> settings dialogs to be
> normal programs.

I'm not so sure that's true, because that more or less
presumes that users will know or assume that
configuration dialogs are separate programs, which is
not a given (either that the dialogs really are
separate programs or that the user would perceive them
as such).

> Also, one extra menu level shouldn't be taken
> lightly. Beginners have a
> lot of problems with navigating through menus. That
> will certainly go
> for GNOME where the menu disappears if you don't
> either move very
> quickly to the sub menu or move your mouse pointer
> first horizontally
> and then vertically.

Good point, although I think that is more an issue of
*how* submenus in GTK+ are implemented, that is, if
the submenus were implemented correctly, beginners
would not have a problem navigating an extra submenu.
IIRC, the question of where and how submenus stick
around is being addressed by the GTK+ developers, at
least in GTK+ 2.0.

> Then there's also the fact that programs will be the
> main reason people
> will open that menu. 

Very true.

> I feel this is more important
> than a bit of
> convinience they'd have on the first time they start

Fair point, although if submenus are implemented the
Right Way (TM), then the extra submenu isn't a

In my opinion, a "Programs" menu on the panel would be
good if one could think of a good set of other menus
that would be both descriptive and include all the
things besides application programs that would be
launched from the main menu, i.e. where is a good
place for things like "Lock screen" or "Log out"?
"Settings" and "Help" would be good menus for the menu
panel; "Tools" would be a so-so menu. IMHO, "System"
is a lousy menu heading because it's too vague--what
system is one talking about, the hardware, the
software, underlying OS functions, sysadmin stuff?

Having a sole "Main Menu" seems to be the least worst
solution that I can think of, although it seems like
there somehow ought to be something better.

If the main menu is supposed to be sufficient rather
than efficient, then the objection that it has deep
levels of submenus is pretty much moot. In such a
case, the user would be expected to make a panel
button or a desktop shortcut for a commonly used app.
Of course, that also weakens the argument for putting
the menu at a corner of the screen for quick access,
since it would be used as a last resort, rather than
something that the user would always go to.

Maybe a "Favorites" menu should be in the upper-left
corner, and "Main Menu" next to it?

> <snip>
> > Hide the "Running Tasks" entry menu in the menu
> bar
> > altogether?
> Only if there are no running tasks.

Somehow that seems like an overcomplication to me. If
buttons and applets can be added to the panel (and I
see no reason why they can't be), then a user might
think the space where the (hidden) "Running Tasks"
menu is is free space and try to add buttons or
applets there, which would become confusing or
annoying when the menu became unhidden. There is also
the matter in general of making functionality unseen
when it really is there.

> > 
> A left-handed user may
> want
> > to change the settings so the functions of the
> left
> > and right buttons are swapped. Alternatively, the
> user
> > may very well want to change font, theme, or
> > background.
> This should be handled by GNOME doorman IMHO.

It is very possible that GNOME could be on a
workstation used by several different people. In such
a case, it is unlikely that the Doorman will be run
for each person.Also, even if the desktop is only used
by one person, aesthetic settings may change over
time. For example, a Digital Blasphemy fan may want to
change his/her desktop every so often. Relying on the
Doorman is a bad idea. 

> > > > Aligned Panel with Pager
> > > > ========================
> > > > Aligned Panel with Buttons and/or applets
> > > > =========================================
> > 
> > > It would be much better to merge these two
> panels
> > and
> > > making this a bottom-alligned panel I think.
> > 
> > My main objections to that is that means the panel
> > with the pager can't be made larger than the panel
> > with the buttons, and that the panel with the
> buttons
> > might also end up nonremovable. Neither of these
> > objections are particularly strong, though.
> With larger you mean higher? I personally use one
> big panel despite that
> downside.

By "larger" I mean "larger". My pager is both higher
and wider than it would be in a starndard-size aligned
panel. Like I said, my objection is not that strong.


----I am a fool for Christ. Mostly I am a fool.----

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