[Usability] Mac-Finder-like keyboard-navigation: Ctrl="and close the current one"

I am tantilisyingly close to getting agreement that this is a good thing,
and that it's worth removing one of the many Window Manager shortcuts to get
it. I'd like some of the distinguished usability folks to agree with me so
that Havoc feels OK about it.

*** The feature:

The Mac's Finder (Mac classic, anyway) has a tried, tested, and loved
feature. You can do this: 

1. Use the arrow keys to move to a folder in a list and select it, then
1.1 Press Alt-Down to open the folder. [1]
     This is already implemented in Nautilus)
1.2 Press Ctrl-Alt-Down to open the folder and close the current folder at
the same time. [2]
     This is not yet implemented)

2. Use Ctrl -Double-click to open the folder and close the current one at
the same time.
   (This is not yet implemented in Nautilus. Windows does this too, though
it doesn't have spatial folder windows)

So Ctrl is a modifier that means "and close the current one". Having such a
modifier solves the most common complaint about spatial nautilus, which is
"Now I have a gazillion windows open". The "Close all parents" menu item is
also useful, but only when you have reached the destination folder - it
still clutters your screen while you are navigating towards that destination

** The downside:
Metacity currently uses a bunch of keybindings, because window manager stole
them all in the terrible past when UNIX applications were unusable. To
implement this feature, we need it to stop using the Ctrl-Alt-Arrow
keybinding, which is currently used to switch workspaces. 

*** Why the downside is not important:

I don't think many people even know about the metacity keybinding, though
those users might be very vocal. I think that the Nautilus feature will be
far more useful, and used, by future GNOME users, just as it is on the Mac.

It's not such a great hardship to use the panel workspace switcher to switch
to another workspace.

Please see below before jumping in with "this other keybinding would be
better". We've considered the alternatives.

*** Boring details:

See the "shift=and-close-the-current-folder?" thread here (my mailer breaks
threading so I have to show you the whole by-thread index):

Here's where we decide that ctrl-alt-arrow would be better than
shift-alt-arrow for this feature

Here are some repetitions of the same logic if you find that helps:

[1] I am mentioning the wrong names for the Mac keys. That's not important

[2] Having these all as *-Arrow keybindings is important. It makes
navigation easy precisly because you do not need to take one hand away from
the arrow keys as you navigate. If you used a mac you would Believe.

Murray Cumming
murrayc usa net

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