Re: compact view removed from Nautilus

Hey Cosimo,

thanks for the quick reply. More cents inline.

> me and Jon talked extensively about these changes before he started
> writing those patches, and other people have been involved too [1];

I have been following both the design wiki and the github repo for quite
some time, but wasn't aware of this particular change. The thing is that the
designs are almost never complete: missing mockups for functionality X can't
be taken to mean that X is to be removed / won't be implemented.

> Nautilus needs to evolve to keep up with the rest of GNOME, and having
> both an elegant and simple design and someone writing the code to
> implement it (in this case, the same person!) is great. I understand it

I couldn't agree more.

> might be upsetting to lose a pet feature, but other different features
> will come back: it's still under development.

I understand that. However: what are the new features? Any chance they will be
discussed publicly before being landed? You get the point. :-)

Personally, I don't see how the renewed icon and list views will be able to
cover the same not-so-niche use cases that currently compact view is better
for; nobody cared to explain so far.

> Polling for user opinions through mailing lists or similar very rarely
> has been the way GNOME designers worked to push important changes, in my
> experience so far - and I see this as a very effective way to actually
> make such important changes happen.

...because the average user will bitch for every little change without putting
much thought (or code) into it, sure. There are a couple of considerations
perhaps worth making.

First, your argument is not in favor of _dropping_ the compact view. Hide it
well enough and people who don't need it won't be bothered by it. It's less
work to do, too.

Second, users *may* have useful suggestions; it's just a matter of filtering
what's good from the rest. The mail starting the thread is a good example of
rational, objective criticism.

Finally, mailing list discussions for large-ish changes would be healthy from a
community/marketing point of view --- people feel more involved when they are
actually involved. It's a matter of being more open and social. You may even
attract contributors that way (see also [1].) And more/better explanations
may lead to less whining.


So to recap: a mail now and then wouldn't be that much effort, really. Any
time saved by avoiding public discussions is wasted later dealing with the
fallout. See, e.g., this mail. ;-)

I like what you GNOME devs and designers are doing, and I know you all mean
well. It should be clear at this point though that there's a problem with the
process... I'm personally ambivalent about the whole thing: I feel indebted
with GNOME as you're giving me a great product for free, AND I'm frankly
baffled by the fact that some decisions are taken almost behind closed doors.

(One last thing that surprises me: you and Allan have been replying to the
thread so far; no sign of Jon though. I wonder why. No offense intended.)




> Cosimo

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