GUI ideas for Mac OS X.3? X.5?



  • Reply 121 of 134
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    [quote]Originally posted by pyr3:


    I'm talking on a basic level.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    So am I.

    I mean, it's *obvious* that maximize to fullscreen, always, is a fundamental, basic operation, right? And yet it seems to create a lot of debate...
  • Reply 122 of 134
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    [quote]Originally posted by RolandG:


    My screen is 12" "small" and runs an XGA resolution. Thanks!

    And I don't want to resize every window everytime by hand. Why not just click the green zoom button one more time for fullscreen? That way, you don't have to if you refuse to use it.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    Zoom is a toggle between two modes, not a single action, which may be part of the problem.

    Clicking the zoom button twice flips you back to the current state your window was in originally.

    [quote]<strong>I, for my part, like my desktop tidy. Part of this tidyness is usig some apps fullscreen. IDEs for example etc.

    Well, I have to admit that I am a "switcher" and I still need to get used to the Mac. But I think that a lot of Windows users will be missing the fullscreen-option.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    I think this is a pretty simple thing, really, and I don't see why it causes so much consternation, but here goes again:

    If your screen is small, then zoom is almost certainly going to go full-screen on you. Why? Because it calculates that the minimal size needed to show all the content of a web browser, for instance, is larger than the actual screen size, so it goes for the maximum it can... fullscreen. This is almost undoubtedly *exactly* what you want.

    If your screen is large, then zoom is going to create a window size that shows you all the content, without wasting space. Again, this is almost without a doubt *exactly* what you want.

    Zoom controls how big the window is, not a modal behaviour of I'm-using-just-this-window/app. That's a separate UI issue, and is controlled by hiding windows and apps... which can be easily accomplished by holding down Cmd-Opt while clicking on an app in the Dock.

    In many apps, such as IDEs, the app correctly deduces that you *DO* need as much space as possible, and goes to fullscreen. In this case it is intelligent, appropriate behaviour.

    If, however, you are looking at a small ReadMe file of a few lines long, then zoom will create a window just big enough to show you the entire file. This is efficient use of space, and fullscreen would be silly.

    Zoom controls window size, not modal interaction with your applications. It is unfortunate that MS chose to merge these two completely separate issues into one confused UI item, but there it is.

    The OS X way allows you to use optimally sized windows (small for small content, large for large content) for efficient screen use, *and* modal operation with apps.

    I've yet to see someone ask for fullscreen maximization of windows who really wanted it to use all the space, all the time. What they wanted was either 'show me as much as possible' (which zoom does) or 'let me work with just this app' (which app hiding does - the Cmd-Opt-click on the Dock is by far the fastest way to accomplish this).

    Once it sinks in that both are provided for in MacOS X, it becomes much easier.

    [ 08-14-2002: Message edited by: Kickaha ]</p>
  • Reply 123 of 134
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    [quote]Originally posted by RolandG:

    <strong>An other question:

    Is it possible to easily manage file access rights?</strong><hr></blockquote>

    Select the file in the Finder.

    Select menu item File-&gt;Show Info. (Or ctrl-click (right-click for those with multi button mice) on the object, and select Show Info there.)

    Within the windoid that comes up, click on the pop-up menu that currently says 'General Information' and select 'Privileges'.

    You can't change owner or group of the file from here, but you can set up how much control other people have with the file.
  • Reply 124 of 134
    Some simple things I like to use are "Apple Tab" which switches applications without the need to actually click on the icon in the dock. I like to use "Apple H" to hide stuff that I don't need up to keep the desktop clean.

    Some stuff I try to do that helps keep things fast, easy, and simple are just trying to stay organized. Having a dedicated download folder, keeping all my music in iTunes music folder, keeping any new applications that I install in my "Add-on Apps" that is righ tnext to my Applications folder. Just keeping all my favorite bookmarks in my browser organized is a huge time saver. All these things together mean that I can use the dock for my popular applications in the application side and my favorite directories in my files and directory side.

    Another thing I really appreciate about IE, which also is keeping my tied to this browser is the ability to switch between actual browser pages with "Apple-`"

    This is KEY to my window management. Instead of going to window and then to my spefic window but rather just switch windows with this key command until I get to the right window. Big time saver.

    So just three keyboard commands really save me.




    But to contribute to this thread, I want OS10.3 to actually offer better suggestions when saving files. I took a look at my sister's compute and it was getting messy. If there is a certain type of file that is being saved then suggest the most appropriate place to save it. Most apps just suggest the home directory.

    I thought I would have more but a ton of stuff I want has been covered already.


    Now make it Jagwire instead of that weird box thingy with the all-powerful, nearly transparent, separator, size adjustor line that it has. Give it an icon and stick it by the Trash or Finder or something.

    [ 08-14-2002: Message edited by: chales ]</p>
  • Reply 125 of 134
    chromoschromos Posts: 190member
    [quote]Originally posted by chales:

    <strong>But to contribute to this thread, I want OS10.3 to actually offer better suggestions when saving files. I took a look at my sister's compute and it was getting messy. If there is a certain type of file that is being saved then suggest the most appropriate place to save it. Most apps just suggest the home directory.


    Actually, the Home directory is the perfect place to default to. When using Windoze at work, I am constantly aggravated by Windoze "suggesting" where to place my files. Weird places too, like a Temp/ directory. Like that's useful. And apps tend not to even remember my last-saved-to directory (like Mac OS does), so I have to constantly back out of their suggested directory, then navigate to where I really want to save it. Arrrgh!!!!! Sometimes if you're not carefully watching where it's suggesting you place it, you can totally 'lose' a file.

    [ 08-14-2002: Message edited by: chromos ]</p>
  • Reply 126 of 134
    With Quartz Extreme...I'd like to see more animation. When you empty the trash...flames blowing out of it.

    I'd like the traffic lights system of red and green to indicate which apps are running and not. Amber for documents in progress but not saved. Red for documents saved in dock but app not open. Green for docs open when the app is open ie ready to start work...

    The said 'lights' could use the soft ibook sleep pulse glow to let you know their status. Perhaps just for amber. (In the just have red and green traffic lights? No 'amber' for 'wait?)

    I'd like to see some 'Dock Fun' style multiple docks. So you can have docks for apps, for internet, for graphics, for get idea...

    I'd like the doc background strip to be turn offable. Skinable...colour changeable.

    Maybe even a hot key to change the dock from apps, to docks to custom set multiple docks occupying the same place...but changeable via a hot key. Like tabs but without the 'tab' menu clutter.

    I would like a Mac II classic sprite. One that tells me things via speech bubbles. 'You have 6 megs in the trash...wanna torch it?' 'Windoze sucks...' 'CD is burning...' 'CD is burned...' 'Wanna save this..?' 'You spilled coffee on my keyboard...' 'Alarm...wake up you lazy mhz whinger...' It may be annoying. I'd like one. Y'know...make the classic smiley mac picasso face into something useful...

    Instead of 'poof of smoke' about a document that walks or flies to where it lives? ie into hard house... Help newbies see 'where' that document is in the hierarchy...

    With QE...I want more gimmicks. What else do we waste QE on?

    Lemon Bon Bon

    3D, I want to see 3D introduced to the desktop.

    [ 08-14-2002: Message edited by: Lemon Bon Bon ]

    [ 08-14-2002: Message edited by: Lemon Bon Bon ]</p>
  • Reply 127 of 134
    cliveclive Posts: 720member
    [quote]Originally posted by Kickaha:


    So am I.

    I mean, it's *obvious* that maximize to fullscreen, always, is a fundamental, basic operation, right? And yet it seems to create a lot of debate...</strong><hr></blockquote>

    No, it's not fundamental unless you've been brainwashed by an MS fundamentalist.

    Apple's zoom method is correct - optimise the window to best show the content. Then return to the previous state.

    Obviously "optimise" is open to debate, and may mean close to full screen in some applications/circumstances.
  • Reply 128 of 134
    sc_marktsc_markt Posts: 1,395member
    [quote]Originally posted by Lemon Bon Bon:

    <strong>With Quartz Extreme...I'd like to see more animation. When you empty the trash...flames blowing out of it.


    How about a little "Rambo" running towards the trashcan holding a massive machine gun that he uses to blow the files away? Or, an ICMB that flys across your screen and nukes the trashcan? Or a lighting bolt that zaps the trash while your screen flickers?
  • Reply 129 of 134
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    [quote]Originally posted by Clive:


    No, it's not fundamental unless you've been brainwashed by an MS fundamentalist.

    Apple's zoom method is correct - optimise the window to best show the content. Then return to the previous state.

    Obviously "optimise" is open to debate, and may mean close to full screen in some applications/circumstances.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    Thank you for repeating the point I was making... what one person considers basic, fundamental UI practice, another may not.
  • Reply 130 of 134
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    damn. four pages?!? my first truly successful thread.

    though, for god's sake, can we bury the whole "zoom widget debate"?

    something i would like quartz extreme to do would be to be able to play itunes visuals IN THE DOCK when itunes is minmized there. sure, silly. but how many people actually watch the quicktime movies playing in the dock, yet the functionality is there. let's put it there for itunes too.
  • Reply 131 of 134
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    [quote]Originally posted by Hobbes:

    <strong>Cool, look forward to seeing these.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    Have to say that I'm not happy with what I've come up with. I probably won't bother finishing and posting anything unless I get one of those "eureka!" moments in the middle of the night.

    I've been struggling with the idea of arbitrary grouping (or piles) of windows as a way to make things as hierarchical and segregated or as flat and upfront as the user wants.

    I'm assuming that this is a document-centric system, but apps have quirks in this system. Alerts are difficult, and since an application's windows may be scattered about several piles (I'm thinking of users creating workgroups/spaces of documents not just apps), I was considering just using an app badge to access app options in a context menu, sort of like current Dock pop-ups. Also, the obvious need to launch apps the first time and access them without any open windows necessitates their own icons. The natural tendency in this system is like the current Dock or the older Mac and NeXT systems: keep documents and apps separate. I figured folders could go with either kind of pile. But how would you make that clear to the user? I was hoping that you could drag any pile to any edge of the screen, but like the current and past incarnations of app and document switching, position relationships of application space and document space seems necessary (e.g., apps are on the left and docs are on the right, or apps are on the bottom and docs are on the side).

    Piling windows/objects and collapsing them (the idea is like shifting piles around or opening file drawers) creates a problem trying to identify each group if they're made arbitrarily/on-the-fly. You wouldn't be able to see each window clearly at a glance, rather they would be overlapping or hidden behind a "pile" icon until you click the icon (probably not a rollover). What kind of text or icon label would you use to represent an arbitrary pile? The old NeXT shelf thing was to use a hand with cards to represent a group of items, but what about a tool tip? And what if you have several of these things that all look alike?

    Anyway, bottom line is that my original ideas aren't working out.
  • Reply 132 of 134
    hobbeshobbes Posts: 1,252member
    BuonRotto -- as always, your thought process is fascinating and thought-provoking. Sorry to hear you hit a conceptual loop-de-loop. There are definitely a lot of those on the map.

    I kind of see where you're coming from with a document-centric model, though what motivates these ideas, and what problems that are attempting to be solved are still not completely clear. It may be that I'm just coming from a different place on this.

    (Note: the following is a bit more in response to your post in the "New direction" <a href=" rection" target="_blank">MacNN thread</a>, in which you ended w/ "But where do apps belong?" They seemed part of a similar process, so I think it's legit to reply here.)

    Personally, to take a over-discussed example, I have few problems with the structure of the Dock -- I like it very much, and it's actually been something I've waiting for from Apple for many years now. I've had two DragThing docks in OS 9 for the past four years: a process dock and a launcher dock, the first along the bottom of the screen, right-aligned, and the second in the lower-left-hand corner, collapsable. Works well enough, though the repetition always did haunt me. I was surprised -- and ultimately delighted -- by the Dock's thriftiness in the notion of combining the two. The one unacceptable trade-off in this aspect of the Dock's design is command-tab switching in Dock order: almost unusable, imo. LiteSwitch X is a beloved necessity.

    But anyway. My point is that the Dock works well, for a number of reasons, but definitely an important one is your own Out of Sight, Out of Mind rule. Having apps in the Dock is important -- besides providing a very useful control center for applications, the effect is psychological -- it gives the user (this user, anyway!) a rewarding feeling of location and presence: Your trusty toolbox lies patiently along the side of the screen. And no matter how the "ultra" power-users grumble that they can't fit 120 of their favorite apps in there w/o it shrinking to tiny smudge size, I have never -- never -- actually seen anyone working with more than twenty or twenty-five apps open at the same time. Keep your toolbox clean, and it's a pleasure. Keep it cluttered, and deal with the consequences.

    Where the Dock falls short sometimes, I think, is in execution. OS X?s window management is much weaker than it should be (we all know why, no need to go over that again), icons are just a little too eager to slide out of the way, and it should all just be smarter and more customizable -- be able to be locked, know when to hide itself in certain choosable apps (a la the also indispensible Yapasu), etc. I?m not entirely happy with the auto-hide feature either -- this combined with the option of the Dock being on any side of the screen can create a real UI embarassment if you?ve forgotten where your Dock is. Ugh. There?s no easy answer to this last one -- you start having to balance some visual reminder that the dock is there (e.g. a thin opaque line along the screen edge) versus cleanness and lack of visual clutter.

    * * *

    Anyway. There are two kinds of brainstorming about future revisions: immediate improvements (of the 10.3 kind) and large-picture, long-term revisions (of the next-generation OS kind).

    I tend to think in the former, but the latter is intruging, and I can definitely see the slow move away from a desktop metaphor toward a kind of instantly searchable data soup, with a network of intelligent links made between pieces of data by both system and user. It?ll be interesting watching the race between Apple and MS toward this end, and see who gets there first.

    And how.

    [ 08-23-2002: Message edited by: Hobbes ]</p>
  • Reply 133 of 134
    thttht Posts: 3,313member
    On window management and the dock, one way to organize app documents/windows and applications is start using another axis. If the dock is on the bottom, only application icons would exist at the bottom. I would consider the trash can an application. Folder windows, application documents, alerts, etc. would all appear as miniwindows in a stack on top of the app icon. They always show even when the window is not minimized. When the window is minimized or hidden, the miniwindow would become transperent or a different color.

    I would always have windows ignore the presence of the dock as well. When the maximize, they should grow to the full screen size. The dock should exist as the top layer in the UI, with hidden as default.
  • Reply 134 of 134
    Good thread, hopefully you are all sending your suggestions to Apple. I just have a few items:

    1. As someone mentioned, PLEASE FIX THE @%^@%$^ OPEN/SAVE dialog. Sheese, how hard can this be. The current implementation sucks. Default Folder X helps some, but, well...So you don't think I am flaming, my suggestion is for Apple to buy PowerOn or at least help port ActionFiles to OS X. Or just copy them (cough cough WATSON cough cough)

    2. Not sure how to describe this, but when a background app needs your attention, it should not be automatically made the focus. I hate it when I am working on one program, and Mail (or some other app) pops up in front of the current app. The bouncing icon is enough, no need to do more than that to get attention. Sorry, I am not explaining it well, maybe someone can help me out here... <img src="graemlins/embarrassed.gif" border="0" alt="[Embarrassed]" />

    3. I like the dock as an app switcher. Multiple docks would be cool, though. Maybe let the user put one on the bottom left (for example), bottom center, and bottom right. Mouse down to these zones, and a different dock pops up. No idea how to make this work for always visible docks, though.

    4. Minimizing to the dock doesn't really cut it, window shade is a better solution for this - zip it up to see beneath it, then zip is down when done. Sending the window to the dock isn't a good solution. I haven't used MIP, so I wont comment, but it may be a good solution.

    5. More menu items, those are very cool. Take up a small amount of space, easy to use.

    6. Apple MUST bring back the location manager. This is totally required for notebooks users. The "Location" command under the Apple menu is a start, but not enough.

    Otherwise, I am a happy camper!
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