Menus revisited

Robin Sonefors ozamosi at
Wed Jan 11 19:17:52 GMT 2006

(maybe slightly off topic, but still not entirely)

I keep hearing the explanation "they can start it from a terminal, so it
doesn't need to be in the menu", but at the same time I see you hiding
the terminal "so that new users don't get frightened". There is a
problem here: how is the new user going to access functionality he/she
wants (I don't mean _everything_, but things like window behaviour) if
he/she can't find a terminal, and can't find what he/she wants in the

ons 2006-01-11 klockan 10:59 -0800 skrev George Farris:
> GNOME has been criticized for removing too many options so please ensure
> if you do remove options from the menu that there is a way for new users
> to get to these options and no, gconftool doesn't qualify.  Users
> require dialogs that explain whats being modified.
> Thanks.
> On Wed, 2006-11-01 at 18:05 +0000, Matthew Garrett wrote:
> > Note: This is not a thread about sensible defaults, or what the defaults 
> > should be. It's not about what settings you prefer. It's not a "Ubuntu 
> > is killing children by removing features" discussion. If you want to 
> > discuss any of these things, please do so elsewhere. If you do so here 
> > /anyway/, I'll be very upset at you.
> > 
> > Anyway.
> > 
> > 1) The "Window behaviour" preference application has vanished from the 
> > menus by default. Most users probably don't care, but the users that 
> > /do/ care are the ones that write nice things about us online and write 
> > nice applications for us to use. Yes, they can run it from "run 
> > applications" or whatever, but it's an important group of people for us. 
> > We can't afford to be obviously worse than Fedora or Novell in that 
> > market, or we lose.
> > 
> > 2) The "Session" preference application is in the menu, despite the fact 
> > that the only things it's good for are (a) saving a session, (b) 
> > removing broken things from a session or (c) starting non-session aware 
> > applications at login time.
> > 
> > (a) is an issue because we removed the tickbox from the logout dialog. 
> > It's also the strongest argument in favour of keeping the preferences. 
> > I'd argue that this suggests we should put the tickbox back and get rid 
> > of the preferences.
> > 
> > (b) can be done from the commandline, and it's a corner case. "We need 
> > this menu item to deal with other people's bugs" isn't a good argument.
> > 
> > (c) is a reasonable argument, except the session preferences make it 
> > awkward and nasty to do anyway. The Windows startup folder thing is much 
> > easier here, and I'd suggest that we implement something like that 
> > instead.
> > 
> > 3) Preferred applications should only be there if the user has actually 
> > got more than one choice. By default, I don't think they have.
> > 
> > 4) "Menus and toolbars? Come on.
> > 
> > 5) Why is "Desktop background" not part of "Themes"?
> > 
> > 6) Why is most of "Removable drives and media" not part of "Preferred 
> > applications"?
> > 
> > ("Automatically run a program when a USB mouse is connected"? Come on. 
> > This isn't stuff that should be user configurable, it should just work. 
> > It certainly shouldn't be under "Removable drives and media". Almost all 
> > of this preferences dialog contains impenetrable jargon for most users, 
> > and I think there's a much stronger argument for making this go away)
> > 
> > 7) "Fonts" should arguably be part of "Theme" as well (which should 
> > really be a global "Appearance" thing)
> > 
> > These may not all be achievable for Dapper, but can we at least have the 
> > window preferences back? Please?
> > 
> > (If you're going to reply to this and say "Yes, please give the window 
> > preferences back", then please take it as read)
> > 
> > -- 
> > Matthew Garrett | mjg59 at
> > 

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