Re: [Usability]Galeon 2 usability

On Sun, 2002-10-13 at 18:42, Ricardo Fernández Pascual wrote:

>         Specifically, there is no "Settings" menu in galeon 2 (the
>         "Preferences" menu item is in the "Edit" menu). In galeon 1
>         there was a "Settings" menu with that menu item and some often
>         toggled options (like javascript, java...). It made those
>         options more easily reachable. The question is if they should be
>         so easily available or it is better to keep the UI simpler.

I haven't seen the new menu layout so it's hard to offer concrete
suggestions, but as part of the HIG team I really would prefer that
there is no menu called 'Settings'.  Part of the rationale behind the
suggested menu layout in the HIG was to decide on a single term for
'Preferences', and make sure it always appeared in the same place in the
interface.  Too many GUIs used terms like Options, Settings and
Preferences in different places all at the same time, so you were never
sure where to find the actual preference that you wanted to change.

Perhaps the solution for Galeon is just to rename the Settings menu, but
it's more likely that at least some of its items could be
redistributed.  For example, things like 'use own fonts' and 'use own
colours' would be good candidates for moving to the View menu instead,
since they affect the current view of the document. (This depends on how
long the View menu already is, of course).

I agree there will certainly be a transition period for users where they
may have to re-learn where to find things, and you might consider
writing a section in the documentation devoted to that topic.  But
personally I feel the consistency they will end up having with the rest
of the GNOME 2.0 desktop will prove to be worth it.  

As for keyboard shortcuts etc., we were careful to consider those
already present in Galeon and Nautilus (and Mozilla) before making
recommendations in the HIG that would result in the minimum disruption
to each of them when they switched over to the 2.0 look and feel.  So
hopefully there shouldn't be any major issues there.

>         Galeon already has configurable toolbars. I has been proposed to
>         allow several different menu layouts.

That sounds scary.  Documentation nightmares aside, it just doesn't seem
necessary.  At the end of the day, a browser isn't really *that*
complicated (from the user's point of view), and there are far more
complex apps out there that don't resort to this sort of trick whilst
remaining usable.

>         - preferences: there are many missing preferences in galeon 1
>         when compared with galeon 2. This annoys many users. It has been
>         suggested to provide two different "Preferences" dialog, one
>         simple default and another for "Advanced" users.

Again, without having seen the dialogs, it sounds unnecessary to provide
two separate ones.  But it might well be reasonable to hide some of the
options behind an 'Advanced' button or 'disclosure triangle' in the same

>         - gestures: galeon 1 supported gestures. This added some
>         preferences to the already crowded dialog. Gestures were not
>         enabled by default because they conflicted with the standard
>         context menu. Should gestures be kept in galeon 2? Should they
>         be enabled  by default?

I have to confess I've never played with them, but if they conflict with
standard toolkit features like popup menus, then I would vote for
disabling them by default.


CALUM BENSON, Usability Engineer       Sun Microsystems Ireland
mailto:calum benson sun com            GNOME Desktop Group                      +353 1 819 9771

Any opinions are personal and not necessarily those of Sun Microsystems

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