Gnome style guide

 I was idling away a few years at work browsing the web when I came 
across the following tips in the Gnome application style guide:

"All operations that do not have a deterministic time to completion 
should indicate progress using a dialog that contains either an 
animated icon or changing number to indicate progress."

 I remember that when I first saw the unnecessary animations in 
Windows 95 they annoyed the hell out of me. All these animations do 
is inform the user that the computer hasn't crashed yet. Instead, why 
not have the application inform the user if everything is *not* going 
according to plan, and otherwise keep working unobtrusively and with 
the minimum of fluff.

"The default highlighted button for a dialog should be the safest for 
the user."

 In most cases the safest option will be "Cancel". How about making 
the default button the one which is most convenient for the user - in 
most cases "OK". This avoids having to switch from keyboard to mouse 
to select the OK button, or alternatively having to Tab/Alt-Tab 
around the dialog until you stumble across the "OK" button.

 The Escape key will be bound to "Cancel" anyway, so why have the 
Enter key effectively bound to it as well? I understand that you 
don't want people who are in a hurry to make dangerous mistakes, but 
forcing them to work more slowly is just going to piss them off. I 
think this point has already been raised with regard to gmc's dialogs.

 My last complaint is that some of the stock icons that ship with 
Gnome aren't really suitable for use as menu mini-icons. For example, 
the icon which is supposed to represent a menu tree is unrecognisable 
in miniature format. Ditto the control panel icon. The daisy icon is 
nice at full size but looks like a fried egg when it's miniaturised. 
I'm sure this is partly down to my 15" display, but I also feel more 
effort has gone into making the icons pretty than making them useful.

 Love that tiger though.

 - Michael Rogers

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