KDevelop4 UI

Andreas Pakulat apaku at gmx.de
Mon Dec 21 11:09:04 UTC 2009

On 21.12.09 11:00:41, David Nolden wrote:
> So I think we have the required features in place for a 4.0 release. But apart 
> from stability and bugs, there is still a bigger problem that should be 
> addressed first: The messy UI.
> Our main-menu has for too many entries without any structure. I think the 
> merging of the editor UI with the kdevelop UI is wrong, because the editor 
> main-menu entries look like they belong to the IDE directly, and create a 
> wrong perception of what they contain. For example the "Tools". For an IDE, 
> you expect it to contain things like "run massif", "run doxygen", etc., while 
> it in truth contains only editor-actions like "change encoding", and from the 
> UI it is not even clear that this applies only to the current editor window. 
> The same is true for the "Bookmarks" entry: From an IDE I would expect it to 
> contain global bookmarks that are stored in the session, while in truth it 
> only contains editor-bookmarks of the current file.
> Generally apart from the wrong expectations, there is simply too many top-
> level menu entries, and the have no clear structure.
> So, now lets see how these problems could be improved without too much hassle.
> I propose this changed main-menu structure:
> Sessions  Project  Navigation  |  File  Editor  Code  | Window  Settings  Help
> The main-menu entries left from the first separator are 'global', and ordered 
> in a way that makes sense. I think it does not make sense at all to have the 
> "File" entry at left, because the 'primary' object we work with are not 
> 'Files', but 'Sessions' and/or 'Projects'.
> In the middle between the separators, there is the actions that primarily 
> apply to the currently active file.
> At the right, there is the gobal settings that are not related to the 
> 'objects' you work with.
> "Window" should contain all kdevelop-specific UI actions that are right now 
> distributed between "View" and "Window", like "add tool view", "split view", 
> etc., and maybe the entry should be renamed to "User Interface". 
> "Editor" should contain all main-menu entries added by the editor, like 
> "Edit", "View", "Bookmarks", "Tools", etc.
> "Find in files" should go into "Navigation"

I'll leave that part as is for now and comment solely on technical issues.
I'd like to hear others opinions first (IMHO its too drastically different
from all other apps on the desktop).
> Also:
> The "switch area" tool-buttons finally have to go, I'm tired of seeing them in 
> screenshots..

Easy fix.

> The "debugger" tool-bar has to be restricted to the "debug" area

Wontfix afaik due to xmlgui/kmainwindow limitations.

> What do you think?

Did you test wether you can actually do that? I might be wrong, but I think
xmlgui doesn't allow you to reorder where File is showing up and moving
actions from the editor into a separate menu is definetly not possible with


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