Re: [Usability] window manager configuration

David Moles <david moles vykor com> writes: 
>   1) Can't tell what the point is of having both "workspaces"
>      and "viewports" except that they have random behavioral
>      differences.

I agree with that. When I say "workspaces" I mean "the one thing that
we have that works correctly" - traditionally, the workspace/viewport
distinction refers to how they are implemented in the window manager,
which is just insanity.
>   2) Can't constrain movement between workspaces to only be
>      horizontal (which from a Fitts' law perspective makes
>      top and bottom panels a pain to use).

Yeah, clearly if we have edge-flipping at all (grumble) it should only
be horizontal and only when moving windows. Hopefully not a config

Edge flipping seems like one of those sense-of-instability-creating
features to me. I really like the new "solid" feel of no-flicker GTK 2
and would like to have more such feel - like things are all in their
place and only move when you intend to move them.

>   3) "Windows deiconify to current workspace" works for 
>      deiconifying from the panel, but not for deiconifying
>      from the Ximian task menu (not really a window manager
>      issue, probably, but it drives me up the wall, and what
>      the heck, this is the usability list :>).

With the new way things work, all deiconification should be going
through the same codepath (I hope).

I don't think a "windows deiconify to current workspace" config option
is needed though, just a default. I haven't thought about it but
deiconify to current workspace seems like the sane default to me;
clicking an app in tasklist only to have it not appear seems bad.
>   4) I kind of liked old-fashioned Motif-style iconification
>      where "iconify" really mean "iconify" and not "hide unless
>      you happen to have some other app, e.g., the tasklist, that
>      shows hidden applications for you". Whatever happened to it?

It's too complex/weird to have _both_ minimization and iconification,

> I do think that for non-Unix-experienced users, "iconify" is
> misleading.

My opinion is that the word "iconify" should never appear in the user

> One thing I've wondered for a while is, how easy would it be for
> someone putting together a distribution to change a lot of these
> strings -- e.g., if you were putting together a distribution
> targeted at ex-Windows users, could you change "iconify" to
> "minimize" in some way other than patching all the sources?

You'd have to patch sources. But we should just fix this upstream. ;-)

> Breaking some of these things out would make it easier to please
> more of the people more of the time -- geeks who'd hold their
> breath and turn blue if they didn't get the "traditional" names,
> crack-smoking behaviors, and whatnot could put together a geek
> distribution, and someone like Ximian could put together a Joe
> User distribution.

My opinion is that if you love wacky old window managers, you should
use a wacky old window manager. That's why we support plugging in your
choice of window managers via the ICCCM and EWMH specs. ;-)


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