[OT] Ubuntu Should Be Forked!

Adoris921011 adoriswang9210 at aol.com
Tue Jan 31 14:48:19 UTC 2012

On Jan 31, 2012, at 9:31 PM, Liam Proven wrote:

> I am not sure who invented the /in-window/ menu bar fixed across the
> top of the window - that /might/ have been MICROS~1 but I suspect
> there was prior art. What I think /was/ original to MS was the idea of
> keyboard control using Alt+a letter, with the active letter undelined
> to show you which it was; so, for instance, I open files using Alt-F,
> O, which is standard across Windows, KDE & GNOME in pretty much all
> apps. I do a wordcount in Word/Writer with Alt-T, W - which is one of
> the thousands of such keystrokes that are broken in MS Office
> 2007/2010.

Apple pioneered lots of things in the early stage of GUI-using including the in-window menu-bar. Lots of experiments had been done at that time including the in-window menubar and tabbed windows as shown in the pic below:


And later M$ used (copied?) the idea of in-window menu bar to differentiate itself from Mac OS.

> If Ubuntu wanted to get away from MS-style in-window menus, me, I'd
> have preferred they shift to just context menus, as used in RISC OS
> and some early Unix window managers. That was, there is /no/ menu bar,
> ever, anyway; you just click one particular mouse button - the middle
> button on RISC OS, the right button by convention now on modern PCs -
> and the menu tree appears right where you're already pointing.
> This also has the added bonus of removing the need to select the right
> window and make it active by clicking on it before you can get at that
> app's menu tree, which now affects both Unity and Mac OS X.
> But it's not very discoverable. People need to know to click. Mind
> you, they need to know what to type to use a HUD, so it's poorly
> discoverable too. The auto-hiding menu bar isn't great in that respect
> but I can see that people would stumble across it quickly.

When 99.9% of the users are used to the menu-bar, it is still OK to relocate or slightly modify it (as done in Unity) but it is surely unwise to completely remove it and replace it with a new concept. Besides, a context menu-only UI could cause pain in the development of third-party apps since menu bars are so widely used on other major platforms and in other distros. 

More information about the ubuntu-users mailing list