Too many icons in the Ubuntu menus?‏ (repost)

Michael T raselmsh at
Mon Feb 11 11:53:11 UTC 2008

I'm sorry, I am short of sleep at the moment and sent this without a subject.

=== Reposted message===================================================
I originally posted this as a wishlist item on Launchpad, but was advised to send it to the appropriate
mailing list (so I hope that this is it :) ).  Something which slightly annoys me in Ubuntu (and more
generally in KDE and Gnome) is the overuse of icons in menus.  Most (if not all) GUI style guidelines
recommend only using icons in menus where they are instantly recognisable to the user, so that they can
identify the menu entry from the icon faster than they would be able to read the menu text.  See for
In other situations, the icon slows the user down, as they will automatically look at the icon before they
read the text.  If you look at for example the "K" menu in Kubuntu, you will see that every menu entry,
including every application listed, has an icon next to it, which to my mind makes it look somewhat
Does anyone else have thoughts on this?  I realise of course that in many cases this is something that can
only be fixed upstream, but I wanted to start a discussion somewhere :)
BTW, please excuse the messy hotmail formatting - this is my "disposable" address for posting to mailing
lists and things where it will be publically visible.
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