RE: [Nautilus-list] Nautilus Goals

I'm worried that this email isn't going to be the most productive in the
world.  You are essentially saying that we should scrap the code associated
with nautilus, and make a new nautilus that is fairly antithetical to the
current design.  I'd rather see small ways that things can be improved.  One
of the cool and promising ideas behind a component architecture is that you
can make new components that can do cool things, and just drop them in

> -----Original Message-----
> From: nautilus-list-admin lists eazel com
> [mailto:nautilus-list-admin lists eazel com]On Behalf Of
> mitch nuclear physics gatech edu
> Sent: Monday, June 25, 2001 1:37 PM
> To: nautilus-list lists eazel com
> Cc: hp redhat com
> Subject: [Nautilus-list] Nautilus Goals
> 	I write with the concern of Nautilus' future.  As of now, Nautilus
> is completely unuseful. I'm aware that it isn't finished yet but it is
> unfortunately already labeled a  > 1.0 version. I'll just list the issues
> below in order to make things cleaner.
> A.)Mozilla:
> 	Why does Nautilus need to use mozilla? Doesn't this produce a lot
> of overhead? Nautilus should browse files, perhaps be used for
> configurations, and simple html use. Wouldn't gtkhtml get the job done and
> done quicker?
If you are not trying to view web pages, there is no overhead.  gtkhtml is
not a real web rendering engine by a long shot, when compared to mozilla.
gtkhtml2 may change some of that, but mozilla is rapidly getting better.  so
why no reuse that code?

I think your basic problem is that you disagree with one of the main design
goals of Nautilus: that Nautilus is designed to be a graphical desktop
shell, and not just a file manager.

> B.)Xrender
> 	What's the status on Xrender support? I realized that AA
> fonts,etc.. should be done via gtk 2.0 in the future but what about the
> mouse drag alpha? Wouldn't the use of Xrender on this speed things up for
> us that have the hardware support?
Xrender is meant to be used by libraries, not applications.  We'll get it in
gtk2.  Also, not everyone has Xfree86 4, and a video card that supports the
extension.  Requiring Xrender explicitly is not possible.

> C.)GTK
> 	Being realistic, how much is gtk 1.2.x slowing Nautilus down? In
> my experience, QT has proved to be faster. The worse case I can think of
> is for users in 16 bit and even worse in 15 bit. Gtk has to dither
> down. If the user is in 15 bit, gtk has to dither down to 16 and then
> dither down to 15. This makes things god awful slow. Gtk 2.0 should be
> faster and better but it's of course not mainstream yet and the extent at
> which gtk 1.2.x slows things down is not really known. Or is it?
Umm......toolkit speed is fairly irrelevant here.  GTK is not much of a
bottleneck.  And this is a GNOME project, not a QT or KDE project.  Also, in
a couple months, Nautilus will be ported to GTK2.

> D.)UI
> 	No offense, but the current UI design of Nautilus itself and the
> desktop is horrible. More thought needs to be put into this. I'd love to
> help and play with ideas if anyone is interested. People keep blowing the
> UI off as if it's already fine or as if anything else will cause too much
> hand holding. The truth is that a good UI design is hard to accomplish and
> takes a lot of effort. Mac OS X is of course a note worthy example of a
> intuitive, simple, but powerful UI. As of now, gnome, kde, nautilus,
> etc... is too careless with packing options upon options in menus and
> even submenus.  The organization shows the lack of real effort towards the
> UI.
I strongly disagree here....I find Nautilus' UI very well designed,
considering it has to pander both to beginners and advanced users.  It is
extremely consistent.  Of course, there is room for improvement, but that
goes for pretty much every project in existence.

> E.)Useful Features
> 	The features that go into Nautilus should be simple but
> powerful. Applications today pack way too many features in out of the fact
> that they can rather than the fact that they should. What you end up with
> is a bloated piece of software with menus full of options that are
> unproductive and useless. If Nautilus is for file browsing, we all need to
> think of more creative ways to manage files via a UI. As of now, file
> management via a UI can't even compare to a bash prompt. Some say it can't
> be done but I think it can. More effort is needed.  The pros of a UI need
> to be mixed with the pros of a bash promt and then merged together. There
> is no reason a popup window can't take input for specific styles of
> management. Ex. have two delete options. A.) Delete/move to
> trash. B.)Delete Advanced->delete files containing ..,, delete files
> starting with, delte files ending with, delete files of date, etc.....
> So one could click on "Delete Advance", a window pops up with a checkbox
> for the style of delete and a insertion field on the bottom. Anyway, you
> guys get the point
You start by saying "simple but powerful", but then outline a fairly
complicated delete feature, that is really combining multiple features into
a questionable UI.  The rest is rhetoric, which doesn't really help anyone
make things better.
> F.)Clearer Navigation
> THe nautilus window should at all times show a clear way of moving between
> any disk and the network. Icons of each disk(cdrom, floppy, zip,
> individual partition icons making up the image of a whole hard disk,
> etc..) should be showed on the nautilus window. Then there should be a
> icon for the local netwowrk for browsing the shares of other
> computers. However, even these suggestions should be thought over much
> more carefully than I have done in order not to confuse the user of
> duplicate things.
The icons for each disk thing could be a cool idea - it might make a nice
sidebar.  A cool idea might be to make a virtual treeview type deal, that
hides most everything except for devices, the home directory, and special
URI schemes (like apps:, config:, etc)

> The real solution is for the Nautilus and gnome teams to get together,
> discuss UI possibilities, compromise on a solution, and everyone stick to
> it. The full UI should not be redundant or confusing. If I want to browse
> the local network, I shouldn't have to decide between 5 different ways.It
> should be clear that I must do it via Nautilus. The way in which the
> system should be configured is a bit tough too. Will the setup options
> stay in the gnome menu or will they move into nautilus? Perhaps they will
> be in the gnome menu but open up within a nautilus window. Ex. Gnome
> menu->
> 1.)System Setup
> 2.)User preferences
> 3.)Services Setup
> when clicked, they open up within the nautilus window. The question then
> is if these options should be accessable via a vanilla nautilus window
> that is browsing the users home directoy? Would this lead to confusion.
A lot of this has been discussed, and I think the general consensus has been
that Nautilus is much more focal to gnome 2, and more integration will
happen, etc.  A lot of this is just gnome transitioning between platforms,
and that nautilus has been a testbed for some pretty complicated things,
like bonobo, gnome-vfs, and gconf.  It takes time, and people helping out
when and where they can.


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