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Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 15, 2012 13:23 UTC (Thu) by james (subscriber, #1325)
In reply to: Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users by wagerrard
Parent article: Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

The thing that passes for a dock in Gnome 3 is merely an over-large stack of unalterable icons
They can be altered using the icons' context menus. You can also drag an application window over the dock (if it has an icon to use), or drag an icon out of the dock.

(Fedora 17, Gnome 3.4)


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Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 16, 2012 12:23 UTC (Fri) by wagerrard (guest, #87558) [Link]

>>"They can be altered using the icons' context menus. You can also drag an application window over the dock (if it has an icon to use), or drag an icon out of the dock."

Can I change the size of the icons? Can I rearrange them? Can I relocate the dock to the bottom or the right? Can I add an icon for an arbitrary folder and expose its contents with a right click? Does the dock tell me if an applications is currently open? Can I add an icon to trigger the App Overview so I only see it when I choose to see it?

Re: Corner mouse slamming -- I want to see the dock by moving my mouse cursor to *any* spot along the length the dock occupies. When I do that, I do not want the rest of my desktop to be hidden by a useless display of the App Overview and the Workspace sidebar. I.e., I want to see the Dock only when I want to see it, the App Overview only when I want to see it, and the Workspaces only when I want to see them, and I want separate actions to trigger the display of each. In addition, i want them to be mouse actions. (If I wanted to be a keyboard type, I'd just run something like Awesome.)

I'd also really like a way to locate and launch an app that bypasses the App Overview. That display is a blatant ripoff of Launchpad in OS X, but, at least there a user can get along quite happily without ever using it.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 16, 2012 18:29 UTC (Fri) by luya (subscriber, #50741) [Link]

Can I change the size of the icons?

Depending the number of icons, they will dynamically reduce their size.|

Can I rearrange them?

Yes throught Drag-n-drop

Can I relocate the dock to the bottom or the right?

Yes, via dock extension provided by your distribution, you can even modify through /usr/share/gnome-shell/extensions

Can I add an icon for an arbitrary folder and expose its contents with a right click?

Yes you can.

Does the dock tell me if an applications is currently open?

Yes, with highlighted icon for that application. Overview mode also display that current open application depending the workspace. Can I add an icon to trigger the App Overview so I only see it when I choose to see it?

Yes. You can also disable the left corner if you desire via noripple extension denpending of your distribution.

The rest of tools available via https://extensions.gnome.org, explore and custom your working environment as you please.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 16, 2012 19:18 UTC (Fri) by wagerrard (guest, #87558) [Link]

Dynamic resizing is out of my control. I only put a few icons in the dock. I want to decide how big the icons are, not go along with an anonymous developer's opinion. I know this can be done by editing CSS and/or javascript. (I've done it.) But, as far as I can determine, no user documentation for this exists (the edits are hit and miss, because there's no way to determine, for example, what CSS selectors control which portions of the interface other than via hit or miss.). Nor is there any guarantee that the edits will be preserved through upgrades. What I really want is a preferences panel that allows me to manipulate the dock. I'm a user. It's bogus to expect me to accomplish my objectives by editing Gnome source files.

I'm running Gnome 3.6.2 on a updated Fedora 18 nightly. I don't see any extensions at extensions.gnome.org to relocate the launcher.

I'm also wary of relying on the availability of extensions from one upgrade to the next, and do not know if Gnome stands behind them or if users are at the mercy of the extension writers.

How does one get a folder into the launcher? I can get an icon for Nautilus in there, but not a folder.I can't drag a folder from Nautilus into the dock. The dock is visible only during overview mode, while an app like Nautilus is active only away from Overview mode.

I had not noticed the little glow in the dock signaling an active application. It is subtle.

I don't want to kill the single hot-corner. I just want to have the dock behave as a normal dock. I.e., either autohide and be made visible by pushing the mouse cursor against that edge of the screen. Or, remain displayed permanently. In other words, I want to be able to access the dock without overlaying my desktop with the App Overview and the Workspace sidebar. The reason a user accesses the dock is to launch something, so forcing a display of the App Overview at the same time is unnecessary. I only need the overview if the app is not already in the dock.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 16, 2012 22:01 UTC (Fri) by luya (subscriber, #50741) [Link]

> What I really want is a preferences panel that allows me to manipulate the dock. I'm a user. It's bogus to expect me to accomplish my objectives by editing Gnome source files.

Dash to dock extension which I tried allow to resize the icons. Make sure to install SettingCenter where you can select Extensions preference under your usename on top-right.

> I'm running Gnome 3.6.2 on a updated Fedora 18 nightly. I don't see any extensions at extensions.gnome.org to relocate the launcher.

Excellent, I am also running updated Fedora 18 on my laptop. Some extensions like dock or weather are not available to extensions.gnome.org but are present in Fedora repository.

> I'm also wary of relying on the availability of extensions from one upgrade to the next, and do not know if Gnome stands behind them or if users are at the mercy of the extension writers.
Gnome do. Lessons could be taken from Mozilla, extensions developers track the changes and make sure theirs are compatible as soon as possible. Given the pace of development, it is much easier to let extensions do the job so they can be selected to be part of the core.

> How does one get a folder into the launcher? I can get an icon for Nautilus in there, but not a folder.I can't drag a folder from Nautilus into the dock. The dock is visible only during overview mode, while an app like Nautilus is active only away from Overview mode.

As mentioned above, "Dash to Dock" allows your dock to be visible regardless the mode. You are right that Folder drag doesn't work for the dock. The reason of its non-available is probably due to broken API. However, you can enable the file manager behaviour background through Gnome-teak-tool -> Files which will display all files and folders. Prob

> I don't want to kill the single hot-corner. I just want to have the dock behave as a normal dock. I.e., either autohide and be made visible by pushing the mouse cursor against that edge of the screen. Or, remain displayed permanently. In other words, I want to be able to access the dock without overlaying my desktop with the App Overview and the Workspace sidebar.

See above.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 17, 2012 2:25 UTC (Sat) by wagerrard (guest, #87558) [Link]

After doing all that, and assuming it works, what advantage have I gained over Gnome 2? For that matter, what does stock Gnome 3 give me that Gnome 2 does not? GTK3 apps? Yes, but they aren't a Gnome 3 exclusive.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:11 UTC (Fri) by TRauMa (guest, #16483) [Link]

If you want nothing the new Gnome offers you, why do you keep talking about it? Apart from being the official successor of Gnome 2 and not being installable in parallel (a problem now solved with MATE), what exactly drives you to go to a comment thread and complain? I'm honestly asking because I don't get it.

Usually people complain about stuff they actually want or have to use. How you could end up in the position of having to use Gnome 3 is beyond me.

Mena-Quintero: A Friday rant on Gnome 3, journalists, and power users

Posted Nov 23, 2012 12:31 UTC (Fri) by wagerrard (guest, #87558) [Link]

1. It's an interesting topic. Interface design is an unsolved problem. No one does it very well. Gnome 3 is actually the only really innovative approach out there at present. Everyone else remains with some version of the panel/dock and desktop icons approach. Those approaches -- MATE, Cinnamon, etc., -- are dead ends.

2. I actually like Gnome 3 and I'm not particularly infatuated with Gnome 2. My frustration with Gnome 3 comes from the rigidity of some of the underlying design decisions. It could be so much better if it allowed itself just a bit more flexibility. For example, I don't agree that preventing resizing of the dock is a positive feature. The App Overview is an attempt to solve the problem of providing access to potentially hundreds of apps. I think its faulty in concept because it is used to locate and launch apps users use infrequently. That infrequent use means they won't find the app by recognizing the icon, but will simply look for the name. So, the icons really serve little purpose there. (The hierarchical menu approaches of Gnome 2 and KDE break down when they contain a large number of entries.)

3. It's "official successor" status is irrelevant.

4. The Gnome team exaggerates the notion that hostility to Gnome 3 is all down to simple Gnome 2 fanboyism. Likewise, users who insist that Gnome "listen" to detractors and let them guide their designs are naive and very wrong. They would have us simply stay with Gnome 2 forever, and that's untenable.


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