[PATCH] Permanent clear button for KLineEdit

Aaron J. Seigo aseigo at kde.org
Wed Mar 25 17:09:05 GMT 2009

On Wednesday 25 March 2009, Alexander Dymo wrote:
> On Wednesday 25 March 2009 18:26:32 Aaron J. Seigo wrote:
> > > when this came up a few weeks ago, several people agreed that the
> > > disappearing clear button in bad ui design.
> >
> > can you explain more, please?
> >
> > here's the rational for the appearing/disappearing button:
> >
> > * it signals when there is something it can actually do; no text? it
> > doesn't do anything. why be there
> >
> > * it cuts down on visual noise. when they are always on and you have a
> > dialog with a bunch of blank text fields is looks a lot worse and the
> > user is confronted with a lot more visual noise for no reason at all
> This question reminds me about similar problem with non-relevant menu
> items. You can either hide the item or disable it. AFAIK the current answer
> is "disable".
> What if we try the same approach here?

well, this isn't a menu. it's kind of like trying to apply the ergonomics of a 
bicycle to a tractor. some things will definitely be similar, a lot of them 
won't. :)

in the case of a menu (or dialog with options in it), we have a bunch of 
options to choose from. disabling allows one to get an overview of options, 
even that aren't currently available (which can be a very useful cue), and 
allows one to build muscle or spatial memory around the arrangement.

> We could grey out this "clear" button when there's no text and disable
> onclick for it. This would solve the first problem Aaron listed.
> We could also make it as light grey as possible to cut down visual noise to
> solve the second problem.

i fail to see how this is any better or worse than just making it go away 
completely? well, other than having faint gray smudges there :)

there's also the issue of disabled line edits, for which having no button 
there is really quite clear compared to it always being there or even 

(btw, i actually did try the "grey it out" thing back before 4.0 was released; 
disappearing to nothingness accomplished the same thing while feeling and 
looking a lot better)

Aaron J. Seigo
humru othro a kohnu se
GPG Fingerprint: 8B8B 2209 0C6F 7C47 B1EA  EE75 D6B7 2EB1 A7F1 DB43

KDE core developer sponsored by Qt Software

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