[PATCH] "Show only important text" mode for toolbars
Adriaan de Groot
groot at kde.org
Wed Sep 22 09:29:09 BST 2004
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On Wednesday 22 September 2004 05:58, Michael Pyne wrote:
> I think the canonical example would be buttons like Send in KMail and
> Back/Forward in Konqueror. I would like to see this added if only so we
> can simplify the toolbars a little in some KDE programs, and then use the
> extra space for the "major" actions.
One conceptual problem with this patch - and I agree with Frans here - is the
introduction (and immediate decentralization) of the notion of an "important"
text. Without strict guidelines, the notion is way too fuzzy, and I see
confusion sneaking into this thread already.
The toolbar is for important, often-used actions that the user wants quick
access to (and doesn't access in another way -- in that sense, I _personally_
could lose the cut, copy and paste icons on every toolbar, since I either use
X11 or ^C/^V for that). So let us presume that every action on the toolbar is
important to the user.
Some actions might be deemed important in the context of the specific
application because they constitute the core of the app's functionality.
"Send Message", for instance, but that one's also not on my personal toolbar
because I have ctrl-enter for that (um, let's not restart _that_ discussion).
Now, the patch doesn't address either of these two notions of "important".
It's an important _text_. Er.
Why would the text be extra important? Because the action is important to the
application's function? Because the icon for the action is lousy and hard to
recognize? Because the action is poorly thought-out and needs extra
explanation over and above its tooltip?
For the first case, where the action is central to the app's functioning, you
can argue two ways: the text is _less_ important because its explanatory
function is quickly lost as the user gets used to the icon ("dag-nabbit, I
can turn off all the texts _except_ the ones where I don't need 'em"). The
text is _more_ important because it enlarges the size of the toolbar button,
making it easier to hit. Neither of these two cases particularly suggests to
me that the classification of texts is going to help much (er, unless we have
"hide important texts" "hide unimportant texts" "hide both" "hide neither",
and apps authors use "important" with this exact semantics).
The remaining two cases don't really match the vernacular meaning of
Perhaps the OP can give some examples where this would make sense?
Don't worry, 't ain't no shame to be stupid - ol' mouse.
GPG: FEA2 A3FE Adriaan de Groot
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