Fwd: Breadcrumbs in the panel

On Fri, Apr 17, 2009 at 12:10 AM, Sander Dijkhuis
<sander dijkhuis gmail com> wrote:
> Some days ago I posted a few design ideas to the wiki:
> http://live.gnome.org/GnomeShell/DesignerPlayground/BreadcrumbsEtc
> They contain some concepts recently mentioned on this list, like
> having the workspace name in the panel, window switching using the
> panel and shading windows instead of minimizing them.
> On IRC, Marina suggested using the breadcrumbs on top for switching
> windows, and for requesting attention at another workspace or when
> another window is maximized. Owen mentioned that the designs might be
> too text-heavy, and for example 'Workspace 1' isn't recognizable if
> you don't see the name elsewhere.
> Further comments are appreciated! (Below the wiki page, in private
> mail or on this list.) If I still think it's a good idea by next week,
> I'll try to implement it in a separate branch.

That looks really good!
I have one comment about it...

Imagine that I have the window maximized the way it is in the mockup
(excellent idea for space) and I know I have several windows
minimized/shaded but I don't know what ones. Then, I want to have a
fast look at the desktop to look at some information on it, see the
minimized windows I have, or press some button icon.

For me, my natural reaction would be to press the show-desktop
shortcut, but then, what would happen to the current windows? would
they be minimized and make it no longer sure what ones were the
windows that were minimized before? Also.. what alternative would
there be for the people who instead of shortcuts prefer mouse?

Perhaps the solution could be to have a show-desktop mode that was a
bit different (using the fancy effects) and activate it when the user
press the name of the workspace. And how would this mode be?

- One alternative would be to just make the unminimized windows fade
out, showing the desktop, and after doing an action, fade them in
minimized. However, this will make them unaccessible in the show
desktop mode (imagine that I entered show desktop mode to select one
of the unminimized windows and minimize the others, I do that in
metacity frequently)

- Other alternative would be to just minimize all, but make the ones that
were previously unminimized have some visual difference to tell them apart
from the already minimized ones. However, a problem about this is that if
there are many windows in the workspace then the nautilus icons in the
desktop could be hard to reach.

- Another alternative that comes to my mind a bit more fancy is to have
the windows fly to some corner of the screen, out of the desktop.
Then that corner would become a "hot corner" area that on mouse hover
could make the windows return in an expose view (or maybe display a
thumbnails panel a bit like
http://www.flickr.com/photos/26671354 N05/3442783751/sizes/o/in/photostream/).
The main problems of this method are the ones derived of "hot corners"
(although being a specific mode it might not be as intrusive).

Variations of this last alternative could be to make the show desktop
mode have different states at different keypress. For example, when
the show desktop button is pressed once the expose view of the
unminimized windows is shown, with the minimized ones in a grid at the
bottom, then if you press the button again all the windows fade away
letting you see the desktop background and icons, and finally when
pressing the button a third time the show desktop mode exits.


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