Re: Message Boxes / 5:3 Ratio

On Mon, 29 Jan 2001, Calum Benson wrote:


 I'm sorry with so late response..

> Vlad Harchev wrote:
> >  In general, user should be able to configure answers to these questions from
> > control center (we are not MS to decide something for the user, right?) and
> > there should be API for quierying answers to these questions programmatically.
> > I think "when uncertain what to choose as default, implement all options and
> > let the user to choose default".
> This doesn't get around the fact that you still need to provide a
> default the first time your user runs the software.  The user shouldn't
> feel the need to configure anything like that until they've at least run
> your software a few times, because you should have chosen defaults that
> allow them to do the basic tasks in a straightforward and obvious way.
 Agreed. But once things are configurable, there is no risk of making the
wrong decision that wil byte in the future.

> > > * when should a gnome app have toolbars and when should it have menus,
> > >   and when both?
> > 
> >  The best answer to this - allow user to select which icons to show on toolbar
> > on per-application basis (as KDE Office apps allow).
> Again-- you still need to start with something the first time you run
> the software, and that 'something' ought to be a well-chosen subset of
> the program's functionality.  While your average GNOME user is likely to
> be more willing than your average Windows or MacOS user to start
> customising toolbars, if a significant number of your users feel they
> *have* to do this, you've designed it badly.

  Same point as above.

> > > * should an editor come up with
> > >   . a blank screen
> > >   . an empty document
> > >   . a message saying what to do next?
> > 
> >  Controlled via gnome control center IMO.
> And would there also be a control center option for what every other
> type of application should do when it starts up?  Web browsers, mail
> clients, MP3 players, even the control center itself?  This would soon
> get out of hand, I think...

  Yes, that's my idea of configurable software. User just doesn't have to
configure every software package - only mostly used ones if s/he is
uncomforatble with something.

> > > * when editing a document, where should the document name be put? What
> > >   about the directory containing the name? What about the modified/unchanged
> > >   status indicator?
> > 
> >  That could be configurable via gnomecc.
> This is going to be one hell of a control center... I've only got 128Mb
> on my laptop :)  What genuine benefit is there in letting the user
> configure this?  Giving the user a choice is fine, but it should never
> be seen as an excuse not to bother designing something properly in the
> first place.

  The most important thing is default directory to open files from or to save
files to for a given application. Properly designed file selector widget could
hide everything from programmer.
  As for other options (where to put file name, etc) - that's not very
important right now. But provided it's better to provide functions for
creating widgets like editor window or whatever in gnome-libs, there will be a
single place to change logic - so we don't have to spend a lot of time right
now discussing where to put file name - we should be coding something more
important IMO or working at other more important things. Once we have the code
for that logic only in one place, we can do whatever we want with it - decide
what the default should be, write (or not write) means for configuring things,

> Cheeri,
> Calum.
> -- 
> CALUM BENSON, Usability Engineer       Sun Microsystems Ireland
> mailto:calum benson ireland sun com    Desktop Engineering Group
>                      +353 1 819 9771
> Any opinions are personal and not necessarily those of Sun Microsystems
> _______________________________________________
> gnome-devel-list mailing list
> gnome-devel-list gnome org

 Best regards,

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