RFC: Put notifications in sidepanel like widget explorer

Thomas Pfeiffer thomas.pfeiffer at kde.org
Fri Feb 19 12:06:28 UTC 2016

On Donnerstag, 18. Februar 2016 11:28:27 CET Marco Martin wrote:
> On Thursday 18 February 2016 02:03:08 Thomas Pfeiffer wrote:
> > The thing is: When you open the popup, your attention is focused on it,
> > anyway, regardless of its size. It would feel clunky if we opened it with
> > a
> > long animation like we still do far too often in Plasma, but if it opened
> > and closed quickly enough, I'm convinced that the benefit of not having to
> > scroll so much would outweigh the "cost" of it covering more of the screen
> > which you don't have your attention on anyway.
> I don't think the cost is much the increased screen usage.
> I think the major cost is having the overwhelm of all the information at
> once fitted in that sidebar.
> We can have 2 scenarios:
> a) all the information  at once (ie all plasmoids open in the side panel: it
> would be cluttered beyond imaginable (and no, you can't control too much
> what's inside the single modules so if one goes this way it *will* be an
> information orgy, no mattter how hard you try to impose design on the
> single modules)
> b) all possible thing still by itself, tabbed interface or whatever, so
> notifications alone, networkmanager alone etc. in most cases the sidebar
> will be a desolation of emptyness (with possible increased mouse travel
> distance even)

I would really encourage you (and everyone else who is skeptical about our 
suggestion) to give deepin or Budgie a quick try (they each have their own 
distros, but are available on other distros like Arch as well, and Manjaro has 
community spins for both).
(Don't worry, I wouldn't dare asking you to try out Windows 10, though ;) )

They both have a quite powerful sidebar (they both actually do their whole 
system configuration in there, which I find a bit extreme, but it seems to be 
working out pretty well for them).

Just for a quick glance, feel free to look at this screenshot from the Budgie 

The first columns shows applets, the second shows notifications. Both of those 
look neither "cluttered beyond imaginable" nor like "a desolation of 
emptyness" to me.

I can fully understand the fear that it may look too full or too empty, but to 
me, Budge and deepin are living proof that a sidebar can be designed in a way 
that it doesn't.

Also, our task/Activity switcher sidebar doesn't look desolate to me if there 
are only two tasks/Activities to switch between, either.

> Note that since I'm rewriting the systray from scratch, I'm quite affected
> by wether the decision is, I need to take the "proper" architecture, I
> don't want to rewrite it a 3rd time that's for sure!

Yes, you're absolutely right. If there is a time to decide this, it's 
definitely now!

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