Unity, design coherency and Alt-F2
Posted Feb 15, 2011 13:51 UTC (Tue) by Frej
In reply to: Unity, design coherency and Alt-F2
Parent article: First look at Ubuntu "Natty" and the state of Unity
Hmm either you misread my name or you mistake me from jeffrey stedfast (fejj). :)
Important: I'm not saying the rationale for unity isn't sound. I can't judge soundness with subjective opionions in any way :). Also i'm heavily biased. Sorry :(, at least i'm honest :P. Consider it a trust to be earned issue with gnome being a successful design through many and years and iterations, andin my opinion less fortunate ubuntu additions. (Seperate topic).
So to be anoyingly pedantic. Unity was announced in 2010 although with the netbook precurser. I'm pretty sure the shell sidebar idea was floated in mid/late 2009, actually from user who used the same configuration in gnome2 (sidebar). He might have been inspired from the ubuntu netbook stuff. It doesn't seem so. But lets not get in to a 'i was first' fight, i'm just saying that the picture shows the authosr perceived timeline, and there are no dates on that diagram. It's quite an aggressive diagram to float around suggesting you influenced others.
In any case, i agree no (great) work happens in isolation. Don't quote me otherwise ;)
I agree that the focus on touch is something that needs a completely different UI, but it's still not about user behavior or mental models. Clearly mark is missing something when he writes:
Relationship to Gnome Shell
Unity and Gnome Shell are complementary for the Gnome Project. While Gnome Shell presents an expansive view of how people work in complex environments with multiple simultaneous activities, Unity is designed to address the other end of the spectrum, where people are focused on doing one thing at any given time.
The purpose of shell is exactly to separate activities and tasks, allowing you to focus on one task, and not being disturbed. It's concerning if Marks decision is based on such a misunderstanding on workflow purpose. Note i'm not saying that canonical should not focus on unity, they are more than welcome to do so.
I completely agree with the pixel usage waste, it should always be a design goal. Using a global menubar is one way to accomplish this, and i agree this is a good thing and also a really hard thing to do considering the scope of handling existing applications, props! :)
For potentially higher pixel saving... consider changing gtktreeview.
Look at the height of each row, and how much whitespace a single row is used by banshee/rythmbox. It's excessive!
- Remove some of the whitespace between each row, it might clash with the multiplum of 6 rule in the HIG, but the potiental savings are huge. (2pixels*rows).
- Use a smaller font size, or otherwise a font with a lower x-height than the current dejavu font has. (it's somewhat large). Again the potiental space to be saved is huge.
Ah well, pet peeve. Should be an easy change.
Clearly the biggest workflow change is focusing on touch. I guess it's up to you to prove that it's possible to create a unified touch/pointer interface without too many tradeoffs, as you want unity to be default i assume it's not just for netbooks, but regular desktops.
PS: I think alt-F2 is a superuser feature, that is extremely hard to use unless you know whatever resides in /usr/bin (and thus that calculator is named gnome-calculator). But that isn't ubuntu's fault. :). If you already proper application/desktop/documents search with zenity, that should certainly cover it. Argument purely based on my own usage patterns. I guess it is important because to please a loud,childish and stubborn but important minority.
Sorry i didn't add to the bug, but it's partly flamebait... ;).
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