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 Forum index » Taking the Puppy out for a walk » Suggestions
Usabaility: Make UI less busy
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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flavour

Joined: 08 Sep 2005
Posts: 124
Location: Bicester, UK

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 16:36    Post_subject:  Usabaility: Make UI less busy  

Hi,

Have just started with Puppy & see much promise Smile

My 1st suggestion would be to make it less 'busy' - there shouldn't be as many apps shown in the Start menu & I'd maybe look at re-ordering what's there. The excellent Unleashed can be used when people really want the many alternatives available.

Take a look at BeatrIX for simplicity as a design goal:
http://www.watsky.net/


2nd suggestion would be to replace the ugly/heavy Mozilla suite with Firefox & Thunderbird - leaner, meaner & prettier Smile


Beyond that we're probably getting personal: XMMS as media player, XChat for IRC

Otherwise, keep it up - great work Smile

Best Wishes,
Fran.
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Walt H


Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Posts: 216
Location: citizen of the world

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 17:19    Post_subject: Re: Usabaility: Make UI less busy  

flavour wrote:
My 1st suggestion would be to make it less 'busy' - there shouldn't be as many apps shown in the Start menu & I'd maybe look at re-ordering what's there. The excellent Unleashed can be used when people really want the many alternatives available.
<snip>

2nd suggestion would be to replace the ugly/heavy Mozilla suite with Firefox & Thunderbird - leaner, meaner & prettier Smile

Beyond that we're probably getting personal: XMMS as media player, XChat for IRC


Actually, I think we're already getting personal. Smile For now at least, I like having the many choices listed in the Start menu. There could, perhaps, be an easier way to edit the menu to remove unwanted listings.

Also, I'd prefer Opera myself to either Mozilla or Firefox/Thunderbird. It, too, is leaner, meaner, and prettier than either Mozilla or Firefox, at least from this user's standpoint. Smile On the other hand, it was no trouble to get the Opera dotpup and install it.

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Walt

Now that you point it out to me, the answer seems painfully obvious.
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ICQ 
Pizzasgood


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 6270
Location: Knoxville, TN, USA

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 18:05    Post_subject:  

Welcome!

The way I see it is to have icons for the most-used stuff on the desktop, then everything in the menu. In short how Barry already has it set up (as of 1.0.5a2) It is a pain in the butt to try to run a program without the menu. I agree that there is a lot in there, but nobody wants to have to download a bigger menu. Maybe it could be simplified, but I really think it is fine the way it is. When I first tried Puppy (with no previous Linux experience) I opened the menu and thought, "Look at all the goodies!" It is already categorized fairly well. The only problem I ever have is that I can't remember if something is in ControlPanel, Utilities, or Setup.

I too am a fan of Firefox, but I'm sure Barry has his reasons for sticking with Mozilla. I think part of it is the HTML editor and calender, neither of which I use. I also don't use email clients. I don't get much mail, and I find it more convenient to open a bookmark for Gmail while I'm checking on Puppy rather than run a separate program.

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puppian


Joined: 18 Jul 2005
Posts: 538
Location: PuppyLand

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 18:42    Post_subject:  

"The only problem I ever have is that I can't remember if something is in ControlPanel, Utilities, or Setup."

The menu can be re-organized easily, for example:
http://tinypic.com/9uymc9.jpg
All the items are still there.
Some of them are put in the sub-menu.
In IceWM this can be done by editing /root/.icewm/menu
Wink

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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 19:34    Post_subject:  

Quote:
The only problem I ever have is that I can't remember if something is in ControlPanel, Utilities, or Setup.


It was my personal preference organising the menus that way -- I do not like multi-level menus. Two levels is enough.
My reasoning is that for most-popular applications, create a desktop shortcut. As mentioned, 1.0.5alpha2 develops this a bit more, placing a nice selection of shortcuts on the desktop.

Quote:
2nd suggestion would be to replace the ugly/heavy Mozilla suite with Firefox & Thunderbird - leaner, meaner & prettier


This question gets asked many times, and I have to keep justifying.
So, a reply has been appended to the FAQ page.
http://www.goosee.com/puppy/faq.htm
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puppian


Joined: 18 Jul 2005
Posts: 538
Location: PuppyLand

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 19:54    Post_subject:  

BarryK wrote:
I do not like multi-level menus. Two levels is enough.

Me too
So eventhough I re-organized it there're only two levels Smile

Have read the FAQ, things well explained. It's no good to have a 85M puppy. Mozilla is fine with me Smile

I believe whatever Barry decide there must be a reason.

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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Thu 08 Sep 2005, 21:01    Post_subject:  

As I use IceWM, I actually organized my most used applications as toolbar menus.

I usually work with many windows open and find anoying to close them all just so I can see the desktop. I keep my desktop empty. That's just a personal preference.

Here is my /root/.icewm/toolbar file:

Code:

#Quick Launch Menu
menu "Quick Launch Menu" folder {
    prog "Internet Browser" opera opera
    prog "My RoxApps" run1616 rox /root/my-roxapps
    prog "Text editor" mini-edit leafpad
    prog Rox home rox
}
#System Tools
menu "System Tools" xterm_16x16 {
    prog "Mrxvt terminal emulator" mini-sh mrxvt
    prog "Rxvt black" xterm_16x16 rxvt -rv -sl 999
    prog "Kill Process" mini-run kp
}
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Lobster
Official Crustacean


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
Location: Paradox Realm

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 00:18    Post_subject:  

BarryK wrote:

My reasoning is that for most-popular applications, create a desktop shortcut. As mentioned, 1.0.5alpha2 develops this a bit more, placing a nice selection of shortcuts on the desktop.


In Puppy 1.0.5Alpha2 a lot more icons appeared on the desktop. This worked well. It is far easier to delete icons (using right click) or better still the bin (assuming that can be made to delete desktop items completely and safely)

Ideally selecting a menu item and then clicking and dragging it onto the screen would create its shortcut icon - but I am not aware of any of our desktops having that sort of facility.

Perhaps a project for someone to write a script that showed all programs in Puppy as icons in a folder. These could be opened from one desktop icon and dragged onto the desktop as required. Who is up for it?

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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 06:35    Post_subject:  

GuestToo and others know more about Rox than me.
As I recall, it is easy to make a folder of shortcuts, i think CRTL-SHIFT-drag creates a shortcut (a symlink).
Then, if you had a folder of shortcuts, you could choose which ones you want to drag onto desktop? ...i dunno, it would then appear on the desktop as a shortcut, thus look different from the other icons.

Note, I have edited the FAQ page again, as it was slightly misleading. The comments I made are for Moz source 1.8. Moz 1.7 and earlier source is divergent from Firefox source.

Quote:
In Puppy 1.0.5Alpha2 a lot more icons appeared on the desktop. This worked well. It is far easier to delete icons (using right click) or better still the bin (assuming that can be made to delete desktop items completely and safely)


...so what happens when you drag a desktop icon to the trash?
does it delete the desktop icon/shortcut only? or nothing?
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Lobster
Official Crustacean


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
Location: Paradox Realm

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 07:16    Post_subject:  

BarryK wrote:


...so what happens when you drag a desktop icon to the trash?
does it delete the desktop icon/shortcut only? or nothing?


Here is torsmo after I have

1. dragged it into the trashcan (nothing happens)
2. right clicked on the trashcan and clicked on empty trash
3. waited about a bit (some sort of refresh after 20 secs) the enclosed pic occurs - so then I have to right click on the icon and delete it - which I could have done in the first place . . .

I think G2 explained why desktop icons can not be deleteted because they are linked but files in folders can be deleted (precisely what happens) - however I want a bin for all files . . . including the desktop . . . Embarassed
trash_error.jpg
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 Viewed   1013 Time(s)

trash_error.jpg


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GuestToo
Puppy Master

Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 4078

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 13:00    Post_subject:  

you can write a script:

#!/bin/sh
xmessage -center "$@"

and drag the script to the desktop to make a shortcut

now you can drag files, folders, shortcuts to that shortcut, and see exactly what the trash program sees when you drag something to the trash shortcut

basically what gets passed is the location of the item
so if you have a desktop shortcut to readme.txt, then when you drag the readme.txt shortcut to the trash shortcut, it's telling the trash program where readme.txt is ... so what should happen, is it will delete the readme.txt file, and not delete the readme.txt shortcut

i don't think there is any way for the trash program to know whether you dragged a file or a shortcut to a file (unless you do something convoluted like making all desktop shortcuts, shortcuts to symlinks in a particular folder)

you could have a seperate trash shortcut just for deleting shortcuts ... or you could just use rox the way it was intended, and right click the shortcut and click Remove Item

or the trash program could check if the item dragged to it is in the pinboard file, and pop up a window asking if you want to delete the file or the shortcut or both ... or you could just use rox the way it was intended ...
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GuestToo
Puppy Master

Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 4078

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 13:06    Post_subject:  

of course, another problem is there's no way the trash program can know if rox is using the standard Puppy pinboard file or another pinboard file

for example, you can start a different desktop just by typing something like rox -op my-desktop or whatever name you like

i have a few scripts that switch desktops, which shortcuts on the desktop so i can switch from one wallpaper/set-of-shortcuts to another wallpaper/set-of-shortcuts with a single click ... something like:

#!/bin/sh
xli ... wallpaper1.jpg
rox -op 1
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Guest
Guest


PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 16:29    Post_subject:  

Thanks for the FAQ addition re: Firefox/Thunderbird...I'd read the FAQ, but not trawled extensively through the forums.
If the apps really can't share their 'shared' libraries, then I agree with your approach - the new skin in 1.0.5alpha2 is a lot nicer too (although I gather that's being backed out?)

I have to say that 1.0.5alpha2 goes some way to my initial regard for simplicity/cleanliness - more apps on the desktop, with simple, non-geeky names.
A few less apps in the menus (although they're in Unleashed for the enthusiasts)
I still think this should go further, though...but if the main distro doesn't want to take that route then fine, I'll just strip them from my variant...

Keep up the great work - am looking forward to 1.0.5_final Smile

F
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flavour

Joined: 08 Sep 2005
Posts: 124
Location: Bicester, UK

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 19:34    Post_subject:  

oops, forgot to login (not used to forums)

ok, if the alternative apps need to stay in the core build, would it be possible for them to be 'Removed' using PupGet package manager?
- this seems to be what has happened in 1.0.4->1.0.5alpha2 for TkZip, XPaint, GTKGraph (& perhaps more)

Currently, if I want to take it down to a more minimal base (& then adding some of my personal faves, such as XChat), then it's a very manual job.

From the sound of the build process before the Live CD is cut there's just a huge pool of Unleashed packages & some make it & others don't...
This /should/ make my request easier, right?

F
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep 2005, 20:29    Post_subject:  

Quote:
ok, if the alternative apps need to stay in the core build, would it be possible for them to be 'Removed' using PupGet package manager?


The intention is that the new cd remaster script PCCC will be able to take out packages that are in the current live-cd, so you can pare it down to what you want.
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