Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 17th May 2007 18:54 UTC
Gnome In the GNOME bugzilla, there is an ongoing discussion about whether or not to include a patch into the default GNOME installation which would enable GNOME to (optionally) have a global application menubar, similar to that of the Mac OS and KDE (in the latter it is optional and off by default). Installation instructions and .deb packages, as well as a 60-page (and counting) discussion of the patch, are available on the UbuntuForums. Read on for a poll on this issue.
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RE[4]: non sense
by vinterbleg on Fri 18th May 2007 05:36 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: non sense"
vinterbleg
Member since:
2005-07-11

Why? If the patch is extended for multi-screen purposes, GNOME has a chance to do something better than Mac OS X: One menu bar per screen, that changes depending on the last selected app on that screen.

But the reason the single menu bar approach works so well on the Mac, is that you almost never need to access the menu. Which is how applications should work. Menus should provide the full palette of functions that a program performs, but frequently-used functions should have both buttons and shortcut keys, so the user only needs to go to the menu in case she wants to do something out of the ordinary.

Menus are extremely bad usability-wise. They are, in fact, the worst invention since software patents. They require immense mouse precision, are hard to find your way through, are very unintuitive, and worst of all they treat all actions as if they were equal. They're not; some are performed more often, others almost never.

Mac OS (X) has relied on shortcut keys for many years, and has achieved great consistency in this regard, thanks to the Apple HIG (and similar projects). I am unsure whether GNOME applications have reached a similar level of consistency, as to enable this kind of UI-enhancement. It is only a good idea to get the menus out of the way if you only need them rarely.

- Simon

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