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Re: scrollbars [was: Re: really attracting developers]

From: Andrew Sveikauskas
Subject: Re: scrollbars [was: Re: really attracting developers]
Date: Mon, 04 Sep 2006 13:01:33 -0400


After reading this something occured to me. NeXTstep is very nice, and via GNUstep I am well used to the way they do things. But a large quantity of people (most?) who are newly exposed to GNUstep are not looking to replace NeXTstep. This is probably what leads people to periodically complain on the mailing list.

So, it seems the situation is like this:
  * Faction A loves GNUstep for its NeXT goodness
* Faction B thinks GNUstep is out of place and should play nice with other desktops.
  * Probably some people believe both are true.

So, my thinking was, why not offer a few NSUserDefaults to appease B above? This would include:

1. An option to have NSMenus appear within a window. It would mix better with an existing X or Win32 desktop and would also help solve the "GNUstep doesn't work with focus follows mouse" problem.

2. An option that makes all NSPanels visible regardless of what application has focus. This would solve the other half of the "GNUstep doesn't work with focus follows mouse" problem.

3. An option to not show the app icon.

These three options alone would probably make some people complain less. But then I realized that, options to tweak the UI already exist, yet people still complain about the "lack" of Mac-like menus, etc. Maybe said people do not read documentation, or maybe they are not well documented, but, it does raise an important point: there needs to be a very clear, intuitive, idiot-proof way for new users to change UI styles.

So my thought was very simple. It might be nice if gnustep-gui, upon running an application for the first time, popped up a panel that asked the user what kind of interface style they would want. There they could click away (select NeXT Mac or Win style menus, don't display the app icon, etc.) instead of being completely turned off by a program that doesn't fit their WM or desktop.

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