Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 14th Sep 2002 22:44 UTC
SuSE, openSUSE From SuSE Linux 8.1 on, YaST2 comes with a new, powerful package manager. It supersedes the classic YaST2 single package selection and integrates the YaST Online Update (YOU) and post-installation add-on selection at the same time. It lays the foundation for supporting multiple installation sources like a traditional set of SuSE CDs, add-on product CDs, patch CDs, FTP servers or even local directories - all of which may contain software packages to install. Specially optimized versions were implemented for both graphical user interface (the YaST2 Qt UI) or text interface (the YaST2 NCurses UI), providing each type of user with the tool that best fits his needs. Read more for the commentary.
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GUI Design
by Scorched Earth on Sun 15th Sep 2002 15:47 UTC

An interface that is done properly will allow a a common user and an expert to finish their work with great efficiency. As long as the information on the screen is clear and concise, the common user should be able to understand what the program is doing. Adding more buttons or different modes for different levels of users only complicates the design as well as the programming. GUI design is usually the second thing on the to-do list. How many professional GUI designers are working on open source projects? Several Linux programs have basically copied the design layouts from Microsoft. How many people think Microsoft is the expert on GUI design? There are several books that discuss GUI design that open source programmers ought to read. One author in particular is Jef Raskin.

YAST is another copy of Microsoft design. If you have used OutLook Express you will find the layout are the same. On the left side, YAST has categories of packages while Outlook has email boxes. The right side contains the packages on top and description on the bottom. Outlook has the email headers on top and the content of the email on the bottom. Without using YAST one could assume that it should be just as easy to use as OutLook Express. In fact, OutLook Express has the same amount of information content as YAST. If a common user didn't know how email worked, OutLook Express would look just as busy with information as YAST.

Comparing YAST with Windows Update is wrong. Windows Update is an install program. How many people have used Windows Update to uninstall a program? Windows Update does waste a lot of a users time. The logging online, download files, and reboot scenario gets old fast. A better version would be if you logged online, downloaded files on to your hard drive, logged off then have the Update program install all the files without the need to reboot. Another design flaw of Windows Update is that you have to download all the updates again after your hard drive dies. I have a dial-up connection and downloading 30 Megabytes is very slow for me. In this respect I am the common user since the majority of people connect to the Internet through dial-up.

How is Eugenia a common user? I am advanced user in some programs but not others. What are Eugenia's credentials for GUI Design? GUI design is more than just fonts, colors, and how ugly something looks. It is about how a user can get their work done with little interruptions from the software.

Does Eugenia's opinion represent that of OSNews?

Clarity and efficiency are great qualities in user interfaces.