Re: [Usability] Re: [Desktop_architects] Printing dialog and GNOME (Summit mockups)

Owen Williams wrote:
On Thu, 2005-12-15 at 16:01 +0000, Iain * wrote:

This feels, to me, a very developer centric way of looking at it.
Is it Joel who talks about abstracting away to nothing? I think so,
but I can't find it on his site. Basically developers think things
like "Well, printing to a file is done the same way as printing to a
printer, so we can have a file option in the printer list", but thats
not how users think.

I'm not so confused about "print to file," but I can't stand "print to
PDF".  Every time I have to explain it to someone at work I feel
ashamed.  "Yeah, to 'save as' a file of type 'pdf' you go to the print
menu, and it's one of the printers.  Please don't kill me."

Maybe the solution is to make "print to file" both a printer and a
save-as option.  That way people can find it either way :).


Something SGI did with their Showcase program (which, IMHO, is still
the best page layout/drawing app ever done - it could do things in
1990 that you still can't do in today's apps...) was to provide both
"print to file" in the print dialog and "export PostScript" in the
File menu.  The "export PostScript" functionality differed in that
it could just export selected objects/pages and Showcase would ask
which you wanted to do when you chose it...

I've used this same methodology in flPhoto, which has its own print
dialog ( with "print to file" in
the printer list.  FWIW, I'm still not 100% happy with the flPhoto
print dialog, but I've not had much time to work on a better one.
Maybe once CUPS 1.2 is finished up... :)

So, assuming that the underlying toolkit supports it, I am 100% in
favor of providing both print to file (which should be using PDF if
the toolkit supports it) and export in applications that are targeted
at this sort of thing.

Michael Sweet, Easy Software Products           mike at easysw dot com
Internet Printing and Publishing Software

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