Re: `New' sub-menu in desktop's rightclick-menu

On Wed, 22 May 2002, Christian Rose wrote:

> On Wed, 22 May 2002, Alex Larsson wrote:
> > Remove new window??? Are you trying to make Nautilus completely unusable?
> >
> > New terminal is a very often requested and used piece of functionallity.
> > The goal of Nautilus is to make it usable, not easy-to-learn because it
> > doesn't let you do anything. We must accept that Unix is Unix, and there
> > will always be things that are better of done in a terminal.
> While I agree with you that "New terminal" is probably a useful feature
> for many users and most likely should be kept, I don't understand your
> other comments at all.
> * Isn't easy-to-learn often a big part in being usable?

Easy-to-learn is one important part of being usable. Being usable is also 
about having the features you need to be effective. Sometimes these are 
conflicting, and you have to make decisions on what to favor. A common 
optinion is "foo may be confusing to new users, lets delete it". I don't 
think always doing this is very good, it leads to a system that may not 
let you do stuff that are important. 

In this case, a terminal is an important part of Unix. And being able to 
easily get a terminal is therefore important for people working in a Unix 

> * Why must a *desktop* user care about and accept, or even know about,
>   that his underlying operating system is Unix?

They must not. But let me phrase it the opposite way. Why *must* users 
have no way to get at some powerful tools that Unix traditionally has.

> * Why do you assume that users would do things better in a terminal?

A terminal is a very useful tool, and something a lot of unix users use. 
To believe that you can completely replace the terminal is silly. There 
are lots of stuff I do in a terminal that can never be replaced by 
nautilus (e.g. running an interactive python session).

I don't want this separation of what is "the desktop" and what is the 
"classic unix environment", where you have to pick one and only use that. 
I want to create the best possible combination, that lets you get your 
work done in the best way, while still being as easy to learn as we can.

This does not mean that I want to ignore ease of use, or not try to make 
as much as possible of what you can do in a shell availible in the UI. But 
it also means that I'm not willing to instantly remove anything that Unix 
traditionally is, on the grounds that its not "desktopy".
> I'm curious, because your comments seem at contrary with previous Nautilus
> development and also the general tend of GNOME in exactly these areas.

I hope not. I didn't choose to use Unix for no reason at all. I chose it 
because it has some important properties and functionallity that I like. 
If we loose those I don't see a reason to continue using it.

Usability is important, and so is ease-of-learning. But they are not 
exactly the same, although they are quite related. I think the Gnome 
project recently have concentrated mostly on the ease-of-learning part. 
I've seen people call usability testing  "learnability testing", and I 
think they have a point. We need to also make sure that our apps lets you 
work efficiently after having gone past the initial learning curve.

 Alexander Larsson                                            Red Hat, Inc 
                   alexl redhat com    alla lysator liu se 
He's a maverick white trash vagrant from the 'hood. She's a scantily clad 
nymphomaniac angel living on borrowed time. They fight crime! 

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