Finder rant!

135

Comments

  • Reply 41 of 99
    gongon Posts: 2,437member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Placebo

    Cutting and pasting in the Windows Explorer is perfect. Actually, I'd go as far to say that it's the way cutting and pasting should work in all environments, from word processors to Photoshop: until you paste, the cut object should remain there greyed out, so you don't lose track of items and accidently write over a paragraph you have in your clipboard, etc.



    I think this is a novel idea but does not cut it. In some jobs like Photoshop editing you generally don't want gray ghosts hanging where you cut something. Besides, the metaphor gets muddled, since cutting means severing something from its original context.



    I suggest the real problem is that the clipboard is destructive. When there is something on the clipboard already and the user does a cut, there is no reason to destroy the old items. They should be accessible through a static UI element a bit like items on Apple Menu or items accessible with Expose are.



    Before reading this thread I never realized Windows Explorer "cut" is not a real "cut". Whatever it should be called, it works damn well. I do not remember ever losing a single file with it in ten years of Windows use, while I have lost important text due to the real "cut" plenty of times.
  • Reply 42 of 99
    gongon Posts: 2,437member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Michael_Moriarty

    No problem. It actually comes in pretty useful.



    There is no wrong way to moving files. Everybody works differently. Some prefer the drag & drop method while others prefer the cut & paste method. It basically boils down to user preference.




    I'd say on Windows it boils down to user preference. In OS X, you don't have the option of cut and paste. In fact, I'm not aware of any way of moving a file using only the keyboard.



    Drag and drop sucks both in Finder and Explorer, just in different ways. Column view is not easy to scroll sideways while dragging and dropping. You have to point to a small invisible area (!) on the left or right to start the scroll, then you have to watch out for scrolling past your target. The time this takes is negligible. What really sucks about it is how much (unnecessary) attention the process takes. If we had springloaded breadcrumbs, that would not only eliminate the need to scroll sideways, it would enable people to live in icon or list views if they want to. Currently the column view is the only decent option for normal navigation.
  • Reply 43 of 99
    gene cleangene clean Posts: 3,481member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chucker

    We're saying this based on millions of dollars invested into Usability research.





    Not a single penny of which was spent by you. So technically, you are only repeating what other people have researched. And when they did that research, they made some decisions based on their research, their findings and their conclusion. And as with any research, the end result will depend on the subject, the info collected, time, and other objective conditions; hence, not perfect, and definitely not the only possible conclusion.



    As such, you should understand that no usability research is the end all be all, and to that effect, it's only as good as the consumers, of which dacloo is one, find it suitable and correct for their needs. When they don't, the usability research should reflect that one dissenting opinion (or more) and take measures accordingly.



    You, on the other hand, are totally rejecting that opinion by saying: "other people have done some research about 6 years ago, and I don't really know the conditions and the subject of their research, and I definitely don't know who they tested this on, for how long, and how much criticism or suggestions they accepted, but I'll go with it anyway, because I like it, and I have this bold million dollar claim to make everytime somebody disagrees with said research."
  • Reply 44 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Gene Clean

    You, on the other hand, are totally rejecting that opinion by saying: "other people have done some research about 6 years ago, and I don't really know the conditions and the subject of their research, and I definitely don't know who they tested this on, for how long, and how much criticism or suggestions they accepted, but I'll go with it anyway, because I like it, and I have this bold million dollar claim to make everytime somebody disagrees with said research."



    That's right, because it just so happens that this type of research gets repeated every now and then, by completely different organizations, be it Apple, Microsoft Research or even Novell. And they always, consistently, come to the same conclusions. Do you not smell a pattern? Because I do.



    You should also know that what a user thinks they want often diverges starkly from what is advisable to them, and, specifically, what they think is efficient is, in fact, not, specifically when it comes to matters such as keyboard shortcuts.
  • Reply 45 of 99
    thttht Posts: 5,358member
    Mac OS X is a fusion of NEXTSTEP and System 7 (Mac OS 9 and less) GUIs. The fusion is worse than the either. Apple seems to want the OS X GUI as simple and limited as possible. Too bad.



    They can fix lot of these issues if they added a Shelf and Bread Crumb bar from the NEXTSTEP file manager:







    This is pretty much the original that all like-minded file viewers today try to follow.
  • Reply 46 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by THT

    They can fix lot of these issues if they added a Shelf and Bread Crumb bar from the NEXTSTEP file manager:







    You could start out by stating what, in particular, is done better in that screenshot than it is in the Finder. What can that shelf do that the Dock, the sidebar and the ability to add files and folders to the toolbar can't do? Why is that breadcrumb bar so humongous? What's with showing the extension ".app" for applications? Or with the idiotic placement of the free space indicator (we have here, ladies and gentlement, NSStatusBarItemInTheSameLineAsASplitter).
  • Reply 47 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Gon

    In fact, I'm not aware of any way of moving a file using only the keyboard.



    And I'm not aware why anyone would want to do that in a GUI app.
  • Reply 48 of 99
    thttht Posts: 5,358member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Mike Eggleston

    a) It needs to be multi-threading aware. The fact that I am getting a spinning beach ball when copying files from one part of my disk to another is almost inexcusable. Mind you, if anyone has any good ideas about an immediate fix, I would be most happy about that.



    Not much could be done. The Finder is a Carbon app with a lot of cruft. Apple's strategy was to ensure the Carbon API matures by using it to develop one of the most vital apps in OS X. Then again, it could also be a strategy. Perhaps they know that apps are more important than the Finder. So, they've concentrated on the GUIs for iLife, iWork, and *Pro apps instead of the Finder because that brings more users than a super duper Finder.



    Quote:

    Also, has anyone heard anything about the Finder in Leopard? Does anyone have anything to say about it?? I remember that months before Tiger came out, there were lots of different rumors about it. However, there have been pitifully few about Leopard. Anyone have anything even remotely close to a rumor about it?



    Yup, no one has a clue. The only thing speculated or rumored is a Finder with more spotlight integration and file collaboration. These rumors aren't all that impressive as rumors go since virtually anybody could have predicted that.



    Apple has either kept it within Apple or the NDA has gotten so powerful that no one is willing to leak.
  • Reply 49 of 99
    thttht Posts: 5,358member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chucker

    You could start out by stating what, in particular, is done better in that screenshot than it is in the Finder. What can that shelf do that the Dock, the sidebar and the ability to add files and folders to the toolbar can't do?



    Umm, it can do everything that the current OS X UI could do, but in a more elegant fashion? That's what we all want, no?



    dacloo asked about moving files to the parent folder. With the NEXTSTEP Workspace Manager, said files can be drag-n-dropped into the parent folder in the bread crumb bar. I'm fairly indifferent on keyboard cut-n-paste, except for the notion of why is cut-n-paste needed. Is it making up for a GUI deficiency or is it really better functionality? Chicken and the egg problem really; but, with the NEXTSTEP file manager, move, copy and link/alias GUI ops were fairly easy through a combination of the Shelf, bread crumb bar and file viewer, and a keyboard cut-n-paste option wouldn't have been really needed. I can see it as nice for the keyboard jocks, but not a huge plus that it is for Windows or OS X.



    The NeXT Shelf is also expandable. The Finder tool bar and side bar really aren't. One could put virtually anything on the shelf. The key word is virtual. It is not a desktop-like folder entity. It didn't actually contain files, folders, hard drives, optical disks. I suppose you could say the Shelf is analogous to a Web Browser favorites bar, but pre-WWW, people said the Shelf contained references to virtually any file system object. The same sort of thing that the OS X Dock, sidebar and tool bar is, but integrated in a better fashion than the OS X GUI. But I digress.



    The Shelf is expandable. If more space is needed, you can grow the Shelf area by moving the dimple. All file system objects can be placed on it: files, folders, multiple files as one object, hard disks, network files and folders, opticals, removable storage. It would have eventually included color swatches, maybe fonts, and other systems objects. Move-copy-link GUI ops were keyboard key (cmd, alt, shift) + mouse-down operations.



    Quote:

    Why is that breadcrumb bar so humongous? What's with showing the extension ".app" for applications? Or with the idiotic placement of the free space indicator (we have here, ladies and gentlement, NSStatusBarItemInTheSameLineAsASplitter).



    The bread crumb bar uses 48x48 icons, the NEXTSTEP standard. It is the visually correct thing to do. The icons in it represented the real filesystem object and other filesystem objects can be drag-n-dropped onto them or vice versa.



    NEXTSTEP as GUI policy showed extensions. The extensions were used to tell the GUI whether a folder was an application or file bundle, similar to the way it is used today in OS X.



    Don't recall why the hard disk free space indicator was placed there. It was fine for its purposes, but I can agree with you that there is probably a better way.
  • Reply 50 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by THT

    Umm, it can do everything that the current OS X UI could do, but in a more elegant fashion? That's what we all want, no?



    "More elegant"? I've already pointed out various ways about how this isn't elegant.



    Quote:

    dacloo asked about moving files to the parent folder. With the NEXTSTEP Workspace Manager, said files can be drag-n-dropped into the parent folder in the bread crumb bar.



    I agree that a breadcrumb bar would be nice. However, Path Finder and Windows Vista are good implementations of that. The above screenshot is not.



    Quote:

    The NeXT Shelf is also expandable. The Finder tool bar and side bar really aren't.



    Howso?



    Quote:

    One could put virtually anything on the shelf. The key word is virtual. It is not a desktop-like folder entity. It didn't actually contain files, folders, hard drives, optical disks. I suppose you could say the Shelf is analogous to a Web Browser favorites bar, but pre-WWW, people said the Shelf contained references to virtually any file system object. The same sort of thing that the OS X Dock, sidebar and tool bar is, but integrated in a better fashion than the OS X GUI. But I digress.



    You're not giving concrete examples of what the shelf does better than the Dock, or how it is more extensible. I can put a URL in the Dock. I can put a file in the Dock. I can reference an address in the Dock (admittedly, Address Book behaves kinda stupidly when I do that).



    Quote:

    The bread crumb bar uses 48x48 icons, the NEXTSTEP standard. It is the visually correct thing to do.



    If by "visually correct" you mean "wasteful and likely to be in the way 90% of the time", agreed.



    Quote:

    NEXTSTEP as GUI policy showed extensions. The extensions were used to tell the GUI whether a folder was an application or file bundle, similar to the way it is used today in OS X.



    Which is bad policy. Mac OS Classic users were fortunate enough in not having to deal with this shit. Extensions are one of the bad things NeXT brought to us.
  • Reply 51 of 99
    placeboplacebo Posts: 5,767member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Gon

    I think this is a novel idea but does not cut it. In some jobs like Photoshop editing you generally don't want gray ghosts hanging where you cut something. Besides, the metaphor gets muddled, since cutting means severing something from its original context.



    I suggest the real problem is that the clipboard is destructive. When there is something on the clipboard already and the user does a cut, there is no reason to destroy the old items. They should be accessible through a static UI element a bit like items on Apple Menu or items accessible with Expose are.



    Before reading this thread I never realized Windows Explorer "cut" is not a real "cut". Whatever it should be called, it works damn well. I do not remember ever losing a single file with it in ten years of Windows use, while I have lost important text due to the real "cut" plenty of times.




    To me it means picking something up, holding it in my off hand, doing stuff to the document beneath it, and dropping it there.
  • Reply 52 of 99
    thttht Posts: 5,358member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chucker

    "More elegant"? I've already pointed out various ways about how this isn't elegant.



    Really? I must not have noticed.



    Quote:

    I agree that a breadcrumb bar would be nice. However, Path Finder and Windows Vista are good implementations of that. The above screenshot is not.



    Just because it has big icons? I would agree that the NEXTSTEP file manager is 10 years old and could stand to use some evolution, but for visual elegance and icon animation consistency, the NEXTSTEP implementation is pretty damn good. It provides all the same features as the current OS X Finder with consistent actions and icon sizes everywhere, which is what I'm calling good visual elegance.



    Kind of odd that I don't like the OS X Finder since many of its features are NEXTSTEP based, including the Sidebar.



    Quote:

    Howso?







    Probably a nit since the Sidebar can expand infinitely with a scroll bar. But the Sidebar is fairly static in terms of actions. There just seems to be one action for files (open) and folders (go to location) and two for drives.



    The Shelf did that, and it did more. Like I said before, one could move, copy or link with Shelf items or the bread crumb bar. It also preserved the spatial location of the icons to find things in easier if you always want to place certain things in a certain place.



    Quote:

    You're not giving concrete examples of what the shelf does better than the Dock, or how it is more extensible. I can put a URL in the Dock. I can put a file in the Dock. I can reference an address in the Dock (admittedly, Address Book behaves kinda stupidly when I do that).



    Do I really need to? I could just have used the NEXTSTEP Dock and Fiend.app. If given 10 years to evolve, it would have evolved to do the functions seen in OS X.



    Here is an example of evolution that turned out to be a dead-end:



    OpenStep 4.0 for Mach





    Guess where Apple got the idea for the OS X Dock? They made it as simple to use as they could, but I really didn't like the direction they went. Really didn't like that they were already thinking about getting rid of the Shelf too either.



    Quote:

    If by "visually correct" you mean "wasteful and likely to be in the way 90% of the time", agreed.



    Unfortunately for you, I am not. The 48x48 icons in the breadcrumb bar provided consistent icon animations, a visual consistency of icon sizes and relatively big targets for mousing. That's visual and UI elegance.



    Quote:

    Which is bad policy. Mac OS Classic users were fortunate enough in not having to deal with this shit. Extensions are one of the bad things NeXT brought to us.



    Sometimes, things that are different are indeed better for the user than the user appreciates. Apparently, one of the themes in this thread.



    [edit: grammar...]
  • Reply 53 of 99
    placeboplacebo Posts: 5,767member
    I think you're all forgetting that the user is neither a child nor disabled in any sort of way. If something works differently in application than another, for example, cutting and pasting, people can keep track of that pretty easily. I think you're greatly underestimating the abilities of the average user in this day and age of computing. We're not stupid. 48x48 icons are for people with some sort of disability that hinders hand-eye coordination, I'd personally find that they're obtrusive and get in the way.
  • Reply 54 of 99
    placeboplacebo Posts: 5,767member
    So basically, we're removing functionality from the Finder just because it doesn't perfectly blend in with this "metaphor" that you're talking about. THE FUNCTIONALITY IS NOT THERE. IT IS GOOD FUNCTIONALITY THAT SHOULD BE THERE. There's no solid excuse that it isn't there.
  • Reply 55 of 99
    thttht Posts: 5,358member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Placebo

    I think you're all forgetting that the user is neither a child nor disabled in any sort of way. If something works differently in application than another, for example, cutting and pasting, people can keep track of that pretty easily. I think you're greatly underestimating the abilities of the average user in this day and age of computing. We're not stupid. 48x48 icons are for people with some sort of disability that hinders hand-eye coordination, I'd personally find that they're obtrusive and get in the way.



    UI design isn't really about helping "stupid" people. That's not even close to what this argument is about. It's about enhancing readability and usability and that applies to everyone. Usability means different things to different people, but I think everyone agrees that Apple should be endeavoring to continually making the UI better.



    The 48x48 icons were for NEXTSTEP where a screen resolution of 1120x832 on a 17" CRT screen was typical. They were designed for those resolutions and higher, and appeared about right. They were comparatively a little bit larger than Mac OS and Windows icons at the time, but it was also part of the charm of NEXTSTEP. They really weren't obtrusive for the design it was used in. The larger mouse/pointer hit area with 48x48 icons is just your standard Fitts Law stuff that Mac users of the time loved to crow about. It's still good today.



    Would I advocate using 48x48 standard for OS X? Well, I'd advocate the appropriate icon size for the screen DPI used today. And as before, using things consistently.



    As for the keyboard cut-paste of files, I've got no problem with it.
  • Reply 56 of 99
    placeboplacebo Posts: 5,767member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chucker

    And I'm not aware why anyone would want to do that in a GUI app.



    Yeah, screw the speed and efficiency that a keyboard offers.



    For example: I'm dragging a file from the desktop. I want to put it in my Music folder. In the existing Finder arrangement, I would have to open my Home folder and drag the file into the music folder. If I could cut files, I could Command-X, Command-Shift-H, M, Command-O, and Command-V in a matter of seconds.
  • Reply 57 of 99
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by dacloo

    Ch[s]ucker: bye.



    Quote:

    Ad-hominem attacks of forum members will not be tolerated. We understand that things get heated, but it helps to maintain a modicum of respect for the membership. Attack ideas, not people. Be open-minded and try to help foster meaningful discussion. Yes, meaningful discussion is possible if everyone respects each other.



    (edit) For the good of everyone, I would appreciate if we could simple get back to the topic itself rather than keep derailing this thread further and further. Thank you.
  • Reply 58 of 99
    lundylundy Posts: 4,466member
    Right. Dacloo's post is deleted.



    Next ad hominem attack, Dacloo is deleted.
  • Reply 59 of 99
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Placebo

    Yeah, screw the speed and efficiency that a keyboard offers.



    For example: I'm dragging a file from the desktop. I want to put it in my Music folder. In the existing Finder arrangement, I would have to open my Home folder and drag the file into the music folder. If I could cut files, I could Command-X, Command-Shift-H, M, Command-O, and Command-V in a matter of seconds.




    Right, because opening a new Window and dragging and dropping is so complicated. Or 5 times quicker than that.



    (Not that I actually would mind Copying/Pasting files. Just in your example, it's actually slower.)
  • Reply 60 of 99
    Personally, I think Apple should build a cut/paste method of some kind into the Finder. Either do it like on Windows with Cut and Paste commands or via shelf like Path Finder uses. Either method works fine although I do like Path Finder's shelf as you can continue to add items even if there are items already in it.
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