Linked by Eugenia Loli on Thu 8th Sep 2005 16:53 UTC
Gnome The Gnome Project released version 2.12 yesterday. We had a quick look at it by using the latest Gnome Live CD (1.12-pre) and Foresight 0.9.0 (2.12 final) and here are our thoughts over 2.12 and Gnome's status in general.
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RE[8]: Menu editor...
by on Fri 9th Sep 2005 13:11 UTC in reply to "RE[7]: Menu editor..."

Member since:

Not really a need to do a formal study in this case, I have already seen it by interacting with real users. You should try it too sometime

Strangely enough, that's exactly what I have done. And some users I see every day (wife). And their behaviour is nothing like what you describe.

Ok, it's clearly broken but the distros fix it so Gnome don't have to. Fair enough. Mandriva and Ubuntu have their own tool In Suse you always have Yast, and I'd guess the rest have a way too.

Did you try to change subject on purpose ? The APPS are broken, so it is NOT the task of Gnome to be a workaround to broken app. Duty of Gnome is to enforce the standard. Distros fix the broken apps. What disturbs you in that ?

The application menu are a centralized place to launch applications from, clearly it's more user friendly to not let the user install application launchers there. And rather force them to install them in other places, since it gives a more consistent desktop and better usability

The application menu is a centralized place for *automatically make a link to your installed applications*. Gnome has several ways to launch applications, not only the menu. In case you did not notice, most applications in the menu are installed automatically !! Whereas most applications on your task bar are added by the user. So YES it is more user friendly to not let the user install application launchers there, so he can easily make a difference between original launcher and custom ones. So yes, it is more consistent and has better usability.

In that case the GUI is severely broken, as it's should be even simpler than the gedit GUI. Otherwise this statement is simply ridiculous.

What you say is ridiculous ! So you assume that in EVERY CASE, a good GUI is more efficient than editing a config file ? And you have the guts to say sth as stupid as that ? In my world, someone knowledgeable enough will always be faster editing config files by hand than with a GUI, except if these files are complex XML things. Specially in this case, creating the .desktop file or adding entries for your language is clearly faster with gedit (or faster with vi) than with the GUI, and no, it's not broken, lots of thing are faster to do in command line than with a GUI.

There are Gnome ways to create your own menu or icons to do that, but you refuse the Gnome way
Same as above, wohoo great usability. Why don't you remove the menu altogether since the user should not bother with it

Because, like I said before, this is where apps can be automatically added or removed by your installation method.

Besides hiding behind the O'Holy HIG does not make it any more usable, and nowhere in the HIG does it state "thou shall not be able to add or edit entries in thy menu, with a easy to use GUI"

I agree with you. I actually don't know if it's more usable. But I know one can't please everyone. On one side, you hear people complaining that KDE offers too many options which are too complicated, and on the other side, people like you asks for more. I tell you, be it on Windows or Linux (Gnome or KDE), I NEVER saw ANY ordinary user edit its menu. Asking them to do that will give you a blank stare. They are barely able to put their most used apps on the taskbar (and I have ALWAYS saw them do that no matter what OS) to not have to access the menu. And when I say ordinary users, it's actually pretty current with "power users", which have their Windows desktops *littered* with icons, it's completely unusable, but they seem to be fine with it. Given these behaviours I witnessed through years (and still witness now, more sanely in Gnome or KDE), I tell you I think the Gnome approach to menu edit is sufficient for the Gnome desktop. You still have alternatives, you could even use the KDE one if Smeg does not suits you, and I think this situation is perfect. You have simplicity and choice. It won't bother me or any of my user if you add more in Gnome though, as they will never use this anyway (and I won't either).

Yes, you have a nice and easy GUI and the application does all the mucking for you, so you as a users don't have to. Thanks for making my point clearer

What you don't understand is that in this case, you actually do more work than if you had edited the file directly. You still have to enter your language, and all the text for each field. But the GUI is useful for ordinary users, because understanding what to put in the icon field requires more knowledge than an ordinary user should have.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[9]: Menu editor...
by on Fri 9th Sep 2005 14:02 in reply to "RE[8]: Menu editor..."
Member since:

If all GNOME dev think like you (which I hope is not the case), I understand why GNOME is so full of flaws everywhere : you just believe users think like you, and if they don't, it's because they're wrong.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[10]: Menu editor...
by on Fri 9th Sep 2005 14:24 in reply to "RE[9]: Menu editor..."
Member since:

you just believe users think like you, and if they don't, it's because they're wrong

I wonder how you came to this conclusion, when all I say was that looking at users, what has been decided is enough, and there are ways to add more functionalities for those who wants, and finally, I don't mind if more functionality is added.

I tend to see these discussions as trolls because I think most users are in one of these two categories :
- those who use a distro to obtain Gnome. These people never get the stock Gnome, so have no point in whining here, especially since the distros will most likely include a more complete menu editor, and you should complain to them.
- those who build the stock Gnome themselves. These people, like me, have the power and knowledge to at least add Smeg to their desktop, so I don't understand their complaint.

The newbie is always in the first case, so what is the point of all this whining really ?
Smeg developers could complain to Gnome devs, but why other people complain too ?

Reply Parent Score: 0

Food for Thought
by Mystilleef on Fri 9th Sep 2005 15:24 in reply to "RE[9]: Menu editor..."
Mystilleef Member since:

Most users think developers are evil and arrogant when a
feature they want is not included in their favorite
applications. On this thread alone I have seen more
condescending slurs pitched at GNOME developers than
sentiments of appreciation.

The reality is that most users only see things from one
perspective -- theirs. Most users believe they understand
their problem domain better than anyone in world, including
developers. So their argument goes that developers are
retarded for not providing option "A" and feature "B."

The reality is that most users probably spend a total of
5 minutes, I'm being generous, thinking through the problem
domain, if at all they do that. Their argument goes, "option
"A" is in windows so why can't GNOME have it." "Feature "X"
has been in OS X for years, why can't GNOME copy it." "I
work with application "Y" this way in KDE, why can't GNOME
let me do it that same way."

Let me break it down. Those complaints are not solutions to
the problem domain. No, they are not! They are defined as
categorical whining. And if I see a bug report like that,
I'd be the first to close it and call the reporter's father
a hamster for wasting my bloody time.

Developers follow and grok logic more than they appreciate
sentiments. "But OS X does it that way..." So? Who told you
the developer drank the OS X koolaid? Who told you the
developer has ever used OS X? And who told you the developer
agrees with the OS X way of doing things?

The truth is developers spend a lot more time -- days,
weeks, even months -- thinking about the problem domain and
analyzing every possible use case than most users have the
forbearance to withstand. In fact, the only time when a user
has the right to open their mouth is when testing the
application's behavior.

Developers know no software is perfect. A concept
which is alien to most users. Users need to understand
every time feature "A" gets added into application "B", it
means more testing, more paths to bugs, a longer maintenance
cycle and possibly more complexity. Again these are all
oblivious to most users.

Apple and Microsoft have access to UI designers,
professional testers, support call centers, software
consultants etc. Heck, they even have resources to outsource
boring tasks.

Free software developers must develop, test, design, support,
maintain websites, design logos, squash bugs, maintain
bugzilla and keep quiet when ungrateful beasts call them
unspeakable names. And most of them don't even get paid for

Let me summarize. 99% of the time, most users have not
explored their problem space as deeply as developers have.
So think twice before you open your lousy mouth to call
developers retards for not including option "X" which you
can't leave without. There are probably very cogent reasons
for not including it. How many of you go to the doctor ill
telling her you know your body better than she does? That's
what some of you seem to be alluding to.

Congratulations once again to the GNOME community, I look
forward to using 2.12 with all its flaws.

There's no perfect software, just perfect compromises.

Reply Parent Score: 3