Re: Conditional formatting - UI spec volunteer

On Thu, Nov 04, 2004 at 11:04:35AM -0800, Hal Eisen wrote:
I had read an article on Footnotes about the Gnumeric 1.3.92 release.  I
posted a comment asking about "Conditional Formatting" and someone named
'jody' replied that the implementation was easy but that the UI was
still to be determined.  I'd like to volunteer for that job.

Can someone point me to a developer who I can coordinate with on this

Discussion on the list is the best way to proceed here.  The core of
the problem is that the cell format dialog is a large complex beast.
Conditional formats add two wrinkles to it
    - the possibility of specifying only _part_ of a format
        if val >3 make background red but change nothing else
      which means that we suddenly need 'undefined' states for
      everything and a means of selecting that state.

    - Specifying the conditions.  MS Excel uses a fixed limit of 3
      conditions with previews of the associated format.  Then put
      the entire mess into another dialog.  That is just too ugly
      for me to accept.

Additionally after talking to people I've decided that the main
usecase for conditional formats would be better served by what I
call 'calculated formats'.  People want to colour code their
schedules (steve == red, bill = pink).  It seems more useful to be
able to say 'background == lookup from table A1:A20) but that will
require some interface changes.

As I mentioned in the gnomedesktop response.  Implementing the
internals will not be horrificly difficult, we've had the ability
for a while now.  The key will be coming up with a coherent user
interface and implementing that.

As a starting point have a look at the MS Excel and OOo approaches
(they're pretty similar) to get familar with the problem space.


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