Linked by thesunnyk on Sun 23rd Sep 2012 22:14 UTC
Gnome "Gnome 3 has received a lot of disapproval of late, from the Gnome foundation being charged with not taking care of its users, or losing mindshare, to Gnome 3 itself being an unusable mess. I've been using Gnome 3 myself for a few months to sort the truth from the fiction, and to try and understand just how the Gnome foundation expects their newest shell to be used. I will end with some thoughts on how Gnome 3 can be improved. The review will require a fairly lengthy preface, however."
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RE[2]: Everything hidden
by loic on Mon 24th Sep 2012 09:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Everything hidden"
loic
Member since:
2012-09-23

It was about implicit behavior which is definitely not a desired pattern.
The hotspots are by nature invisible: that is fundamental bad design. An application, even a desktop, should expose its behavior, make it explicit and consistent. A desktop interface is widget driven, you input text in text areas, click on buttons, drag icons around: it's visible, it's clickable, it's interactive. I expect something to happen when I interact with a visible widget. Even if my hands are not incredibly agile I can move the cursor around and then stop and click. First, choose the target interactive widget, then willfully click or type to achieve interaction. I choose, then validate and trigger something. An invisible hotspot is absolutely not consistent with these concepts: I move the cursor to a zone, then an unvalidated intrusive event happens. It's not a flyover tooltip, it's my entire screen content that gets replaced with another, unrelated context.

They could have at least used a workaround, like the "show desktop zone" of Windows 7 (bottom right) which is explicit.

Consistency is why Macs have only one button. The right button is the "mystery contextual menu"; you can hardly guess what the menu contains in an application. Of course, two or three or even more buttons (and keyboard shortcuts) are better for advanced users, but the point is that it leads to confusing, inconsistent and unexpected behaviors.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Everything hidden
by thesunnyk on Mon 24th Sep 2012 13:43 in reply to "RE[2]: Everything hidden"
thesunnyk Member since:
2010-05-21

"that is fundamental bad design"

Design is a matter of opinion. Unfortunately when you have designers and programmers talking to one another, the programmers internalise what the designers say as hard law. In reality it's more of a guide.

IMHO having these two modes -- one for "using" the desktop, and the other for "controlling" it, seem fairly natural, but then I'm a vi guy. I've never understood Macs, they've always been strange and mysterious and I couldn't ever get my work done on one, so your proclamations of "the right way" don't really sit well with me.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Everything hidden
by zima on Fri 28th Sep 2012 13:25 in reply to "RE[2]: Everything hidden"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

The hotspots are by nature invisible: that is fundamental bad design. An application, even a desktop, should expose its behavior, make it explicit and consistent. A desktop interface is widget driven, you input text in text areas, click on buttons, drag icons around: it's visible, it's clickable, it's interactive. I expect something to happen when I interact with a visible widget. [...] An invisible hotspot is absolutely not consistent with these concepts: I move the cursor to a zone, then an unvalidated intrusive event happens.
[...]
Consistency is why Macs have only one button. The right button is the "mystery contextual menu"; you can hardly guess what the menu contains in an application. Of course, two or three or even more buttons (and keyboard shortcuts) are better for advanced users, but the point is that it leads to confusing, inconsistent and unexpected behaviors.

Except, you're so wrong about Macs mouses... they have exactly the kind of "invisible", "fundamental bad design", not exposing its behavior, not explicit and consistent behavior you criticize just a few lines earlier...

Apple Might Mouse does have more than one button, four of them actually. Or at least four-button behavior - thing is, they are made invisible (and so on). A mouse, a device made for clicking at things, hiding its buttons from view...
Worse, it forces to lift the left finger before right-clicking.

Magic Mouse and touchpad gestures are similarly bad - they are inherently invisible and non-discoverable.

And with the earlier Apple mouses which did have only one button, the OS was adopted to utilize it in combination with some keyboard keys, to recreate the behavior desired from the original multi-button Xerox mouse ...not very discoverable (plus, it was likely largely a cost-cutting measure - back then, one vs two+ mouse buttons could make a noticeable difference in this regard)

Edited 2012-09-28 13:42 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2